Baked Chicken Breast
2-4 bone-in, skin-on split chicken breasts
¼ cup molasses
¼ cup Dijon mustard
¼ cup apple cider vinegar
¾ cup apple cider
2 medium apples, peeled, cored and cut into ½-inch slices (I like Granny Smith, Honey Crisp or a combination of the two)
2 sweet onions, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary (or 1 teaspoon dried rosemary)
1 tablespoon loosely packed fresh thyme leaves (or 1 teaspoon dried thyme)
Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
Optional garnish: additional fresh herbs
Preheat oven to 375° F. Grease a large baking dish or roasting pan.
In a large bowl, whisk together molasses, Dijon mustard, apple cider vinegar, and apple cider. Add chicken and toss to coat. Let chicken sit in the marinade for about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, arrange onions, apples, garlic and herbs in the bottom of the prepared dish. Season with salt and pepper; toss to combine. Place chicken on top; pour remainder of the marinade over chicken. Season chicken liberally with salt and pepper.
Bake for about 55-60 minutes, basting the chicken at the 30-, 40-, and 50-minute marks. Baste once more after removing from the oven. The chicken is done when it reaches an internal temperature of 165° F. This can take as little as 35 minutes for small chicken breasts, or as much 70 minutes for very large chicken breasts. A meat thermometer is the best way to tell when your chicken is cooked through.
Garnish chicken with additional herbs, if desired.
Use bone-in, skin-on chicken for the best flavor and texture. I prefer Granny Smith, Honey Crisp or other firm apples that hold their shape well during baking. Fresh rosemary and thyme yield the greatest flavor.
The total cooking time will vary depending on the size and thickness of your chicken and on the temperature of the meat when it goes into the oven. As a result, a meat thermometer is always the best way to know when your chicken is done. It will be perfectly tender and juicy when it reaches 165° F.
Have leftover roasted chicken? The meat is delicious on sandwiches, on top of salads, in chicken salad, in soups, and in casseroles.