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Simple 7 Spice Chicken

Simple 7 Spice chicken yields deep golden color with mouthwatering flavor. Purchase excellent 7 Spice in my shop here.

Roasted Chicken platter with 7 Spice

This Simple 7 Spice Chicken recipe came to life out of my correction of a chicken-rut. For years, for a lifetime, I have exclusively made my mom’s oven fried chicken any time I’m roasting bone-in, skin-on chicken pieces. Call it a lack of creativity, call it ‘we just love oven-fried.’

Then one Sunday this past fall I was making a big tunjura (pan) of meatballs. To go with, oven-fried chicken. Nothing says I love you quite like the double entrée.

Simple 7 Spice marinade ingredients

But me being me, I had taken on more than the hours in the day allowed for. When I realized there would not even time to dust the chicken with flour, I grabbed a couple of bottles of Club Lucky Italian salad dressing and tossed that with the chicken in a big zip top bag. Come dinner time, the I simply gave the chicken over to the sheet pan with no other prep necessary.

Would you believe that chicken stole the show? Meatballs were wonderful, but the chicken took on a golden lacquer that I had not seen from my oven before, with the oven-fried look being the only one in my repertoire.

No offense to the Club Lucky, but now I was on a mission to give my bone-in chicken pieces all of the love they deserved with Lebanese flavors. Simple marinades with spice+lemon+garlic and oil? Luscious, lacquered chicken. There is no more deeply Middle Eastern food flavor than in 7 Spice, which blends such an array of spices to fragrant, ultra-flavorful effect.

Zip lock bag of marinated chicken

Make in the moment, or make-ahead

The marinade can be shaken up in a jar and kept in your fridge until chicken dinner is on the menu. I’ve marinated for as little as one hour to great effect, and maximized flavor at about 12 hours marinating time.

7 Spice marinated chicken on a sheet pan
Roasted marinated chicken on a sheet pan

Sheet pan simple

I’d love to get away from foil but the non-stick remains a faithful companion in recipes like this one. Easy clean-up, no sticking. I also like to lift the chicken off the pan by using a rack in the sheet pan, but it’s not a must.  If your oven has a convection setting, use it here  toward  the end of roasting to encourage even more caramelization of the chicken.

Even those of us who cook  all of the time can get into a recipe-rut–maybe even more so because sometimes it’s great to just cook what you know. Dan says the Simple 7 Spice Chicken recipe can be a rut forever more as far as he’s concerned. As for me, how about 7 Spice Chicken + kibbeh for my next double-entree?

7 Spice chicken on a platter held in hands
Roasted Chicken platter with 7 Spice

Simple 7 Spice Chicken

Maureen Abood
Simple 7 Spice chicken yields deep golden color with mouthwatering flavor. Increase the recipe easily with more chicken and more marinade (or decrease easily). Purchase excellent Lebanese 7 Spice in my shop here.
Servings 6


  • 2 bone-in, skin on chicken breasts, cut in half cross-wise to make 4 pieces
  • 6 chicken legs
  • 4 chicken thighs
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 clove garlic, miced or grated
  • 2 tablespoons Lebanese 7 Spice
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt


  • Heat the oven to 425°F. Combine all of the chicken pieces in a bowl or gallon zip top bag.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk the olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, 7 spice, and salt. Pour the marinade over the chicken pieces and turn them to coat. Refrigerate for one hour and up to 12 hours.
  • Line a sheet pan with non-stick foil. Transfer the marinated chicken pieces to the pan, leaving behind as much of the marinade as possible to prevent the pan from having too much liquid.
  • Roast the chicken for 45 minutes to an hour, checking the temperature of the pieces, until they reach 165°F. If your oven has a convection setting, turn that on for the last 20 minutes of roasting to encourage even more even browning. Serve the chicken immediately or make ahead, refrigerate, then reheat at 250° for 20 minutes.


  1. Ramona on January 27, 2022 at 1:46 PM

    Wondering if one could use chicken breats as my family does not like thighs nor drumsticks. IF so, would the baking time vary?

  2. Dolores on January 27, 2022 at 7:02 PM

    Chicken sounds like my grandma Tyta made. We! My mom tried to make at home & it never tasted as good as my Tyta’s.

    Question unrelated: I’ve bought Orlando jarred grape leaves for years but lately the leaves are large & very thick veined & tough. have you had that situation? I’ve tried other brands— they are picked “old” I believe.
    I’m in Southern Arizona—-2 Mid East stores in my town of Tucson. Good choices but I love my grape leaves. Would it be a problem to blanch or would that not affect the veins?

    • Annette on August 1, 2022 at 4:40 PM

      Try Ala Afia. No stem, tender and very little waste

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Maureen Abood in the kitchen

I'm so glad you're here! You'll find among these pages the fresh and classic Lebanese recipes we can't get enough of! My mission is to share my tried + true recipes -- and to help our Lebanese food-loving community keep these culinary traditions alive and on the table. What recipes are you looking for? Let me know!

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