make this now: roasted chicken thighs with miso and ginger

I always have miso in the fridge. While it’s not something not usually considered a kitchen staple in North American households, I love having it close by. Not only does it last forever – hello, fermented rice paste! – but there’s something both pungent and mellow about it that makes it pretty versatile. It’s fantastic in vegan gravy, delicious in stirfries and soups, and perfect with cod or salmon. Yeah, I’m a fan.

I’ve never tried miso with chicken and I’m so glad that I did. This dish was unbelievable! The garlic, ginger, chili paste and miso all worked its way into the chicken thighs to make some seriously delicious magic. The flavour was deep and despite how it looks, it’s surprisingly not very spicy. If you like a lot of heat, add some sriracha to the mix, but I think this is pretty perfect as is. I wouldn’t change a thing.

Miso comes in light and dark versions – I prefer the light version (shiso is my fave) and you can find it in health food stores and Asian markets. And please don’t leave out the chili garlic sauce – it has a special kind of magic all its own. One sniff from the jar and I get all goo-goo faced. You can find it at Asian markets everywhere.

elsewhere: Visit Poppytalk to check out my current favorite salad dressing recipe. It’s creamy and delicious over summer greens.

39 comments to “make this now: roasted chicken thighs with miso and ginger”

  1. 1
    Joanne   August 11, 2011 at 3:26 am

    Miso is one of those ingredients I always keep MEANING to pick up, but never do. You’ve just convinced me. It’s time.

  2. 2
    Tracy   August 11, 2011 at 5:02 am

    Wish you had a photo of what goo-goo faced looks like 🙂

  3. 3
    Sophie Delphis   August 11, 2011 at 6:29 am

    I am a great fan of miso. This looks delicious.

  4. 4
    Gretchen @   August 11, 2011 at 6:59 am

    This marinade is very intriguing– do you think it would work if you grilled the chicken?

  5. 5
    kristel   August 11, 2011 at 7:42 am

    Does miso really last forever in the fridge? The last time I bought it, I wound up throwing away half the jar because I got scared it’d been sitting too long (three or four months). I was wishing it came with a “Use within x-amount of time after opening” on the label. (My attempts to tease an answer out of google didn’t really go anywhere either, though it’s been a couple years, so I guess I could/should try again.)

  6. 6
    vanillasugarblog   August 11, 2011 at 7:47 am

    oh my gosh just reading the ingredient list my tastebuds are watering.
    love that marinade. yes please!

  7. 7
    Bijoux   August 11, 2011 at 8:40 am

    I’ve had a tub of miso paste in my fridge for 5 years! I wonder if it’s still any good? LOL! I haven’t used it in 2 years however. I do like the versatility of miso and that miso gravy rocks my socks so I can only imagine what this miso marinade can do.

  8. 8
    kickpleat   August 11, 2011 at 9:46 am

    Joanne, I’m glad I have you convinced. It’s so good and goes with so many different foods! You’ll love it.

    Haha, Tracy!!! I don’t know if that should be made public 🙂

    Thank you, Sophie, it is.

    Gretchen, yes, I think it would be perfect grilled! But do make sure that you leave the marinade on overnight.

    Kristel, it does. My jar has been going on for over a year – it’s fermented already. As long as there is no mould on top, you are fine. But if you are worried, I do have a lot of miso recipes on my site to keep that container going!

    Thanks vanillasugar! It is totally mouthwatering. My husband loved this meal soooo much.

    Bijoux, 5 years? Wow. I’m sure it’s probably safe still!

  9. 9
    Robert   August 11, 2011 at 5:17 pm

    Given the marinade time, rather than “make this now” maybe the title should be “eat this tomorrow”. Went to the store and got all the stuff, then realized that I couldn’t eat this till tomorrow…

  10. 10
    kickpleat   August 11, 2011 at 8:08 pm

    Ha! So sorry Robert, but making it now and eating it tomorrow sounds about right. Just think, dinner will be awesome. And you probably could get away with less-marinating time too. If so, I’d be curious about the results!

  11. 11
    Sascha at Toddlers tastes   August 12, 2011 at 3:26 am

    Guess what we just had for dinner? That’s right, I saw this yesterday and just had to make it today. I didn’t marinate this over night, in fact it only got 5mins. My hubby and I don’t think it’s necessary. What did we think? The chicken was amazing, i wouldn’t change a thing. I’m about to share this with everyone i know. Thank you. This will be a regular for us now.

  12. 12
    Kate   August 12, 2011 at 8:15 am

    Making this tomorrow night!

  13. 13
    kickpleat   August 13, 2011 at 3:35 pm

    Sascha, so good to hear that this doesn’t need to be marinated overnight! Hurrah!! Glad you enjoyed this.

    Kate, can’t wait to hear how it goes! Enjoy 🙂

  14. 14
    newlywed   August 14, 2011 at 4:54 pm

    This looks great! I keep wanting to pick up some miso, but have to convince my husband that it is worth the price. How long does yours last you?

  15. 15
    kickpleat   August 14, 2011 at 8:46 pm

    Newlywed, is it that expensive? I think it’s around $4 a tub here and that lasts literally forever. We’ve had our tub of miso for well over a year and it’s highly versatile.

  16. 16
    Elsie   August 15, 2011 at 6:29 am

    I made this on the weekend. It did not get an overnight marinade, more like about 5 or 6 hours. It is gob-smackingly good. Thank you for the recipe.

  17. 17
    kickpleat   August 15, 2011 at 9:19 am

    Elsie, so glad that you loved it and great to hear about the shorter marinating time!

  18. 18
    Jen   August 17, 2011 at 11:22 pm

    This recipe sounds amazing! I will definitely have to make this soon. What brand of chili garlic sauce did you use?

  19. 19
    kickpleat   August 18, 2011 at 9:27 am

    Hi Jen, Lee Kum Kee is the brand I used for this dish. I found it in my local Asian market. Good luck!

  20. 20
    LS   August 20, 2011 at 4:28 am


    was just wondering if the 1TB vegetable has to be added to the marinade and then a separate amount added to the baking dish. OR, is the 1TB simply for the baking dish?

  21. 21
    kickpleat   August 21, 2011 at 12:28 pm

    Hi LS, the vegetable oil is just for the bottom of the dish so nothing sticks. There is no oil other than the sesame oil in the marinade. Hope that helps!

  22. 22
    Nicky   August 24, 2011 at 10:27 pm

    Hello! We had this for dinner the other night and it we really loved it! Thank you!

  23. 23
    kickpleat   August 25, 2011 at 12:37 pm

    Hooray, so glad you loved it Nicky!

  24. 24
    Lisa Cherkasky   September 1, 2011 at 10:09 am

    What a beautiful blog. Love it!!

  25. 25
    kickpleat   September 4, 2011 at 9:56 am

    Thank you Lisa for stopping by!

  26. 26
    Beti   September 10, 2011 at 8:24 pm

    I put up several jars of ginger peach jam recently and had a bit leftover that I didn’t BWB and just refrigerated. I mixed it with miso and a bit of rice vinegar and soy sauce. I used it for a dip for some chicken-flavored seitan cutlets. It turned out remarkably good for a spur of the moment experiment!

    Miso adds such a nice richness to a dish!

  27. 27
    M   September 10, 2011 at 11:55 pm

    LOL, I totally feel you, Robert.

  28. 28
    Samantha   November 16, 2011 at 10:43 pm

    Oh looks awesome! I’m thinking of making this for a dinner party. Any ideas for sides or appies?

  29. 29
    kickpleat   November 17, 2011 at 9:24 am

    Samantha, you could definitely serve this easily with rice (white or brown) and some lightly steamed vegetables. I think keeping things simple is best since the dish itself has quite a punch. Good luck!

  30. 30
    Michelle   January 3, 2012 at 1:44 pm

    Looks great! Can’t wait to try. Thanks for the 2011 recap!

  31. 31
    Jamie   January 7, 2012 at 5:40 pm

    Looks awesome! Any down side to use breasts instead of thighs?

  32. 32
    kickpleat   January 8, 2012 at 11:37 am

    Thanks Michelle!

    Jamie, I use thighs and legs since they’re cheaper when buying organic. I think with breast meat you might need to check the baking time since white meat tends to dry out. So check the dish 10-15 minutes early to see if the meat is done. That should be it! Otherwise, I think it would still be delicious 🙂

  33. 33
    Caterina   February 24, 2014 at 1:29 pm

    This has become one of my favourite chicken recipes – so easy and so flavourful. Served this weekend with your broccoli and millet salad. I love everything I have made from your blog. Thank you 🙂

  34. 34
    Elissa   April 16, 2017 at 8:01 pm

    This is still one of my favorite recipes. I have made this at least once or twice a year for years now. THANK YOU!

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