My Debut Cookbook 'Comfy' Is Out Now. ORDER HERE!
Chicken/ Hearty Dinners

Spanish Chicken Tray Bake

August 14, 2018 (Last Updated: March 17, 2023) by Chris Collins

This Spanish Chicken Tray Bake is absolutely bursting with flavour! Stress free dinners don’t come more delicious than this!

Oooooo you guys. Have I got a recipe for you! Literally no effort at all, bung it in a tray, pop it in the oven and allow your kitchen to fill with the most gorgeous scent imaginable. Perfect for weeknight dinner!

tray bake fresh out the oven with metal serving spoon digging in

Spanish Chicken Tray Bake

First things first – let’s talk chicken. For this recipe you’ll need bone in skin on chicken thighs. Thighs are great because they tend to be fattier than breast, meaning they can take much higher heat for a longer period of time before they dry out. Having the bone in ensure the thighs cook more evenly, whilst having the skin on gives you a gorgeous crispy layer to go on top.

Can I use chicken breast?

Due to the above reasons I do not recommend using regular chicken breast for this recipe. You can however use drumsticks as that is dark meat and will be able to take on the heat.

Chicken Marinade

I know I promised a fuss free dinner, and it totally is. I just ask one thing – that you marinate the chicken. Marinate for as long as you can (up to overnight). If you’re in a rush then still use the marinade. 1 minute is better than no minutes!

How to make Spanish Chicken Tray Bake - marinading chicken step by step photos

How to make a Chicken Tray Bake

Alrighty, chicken thighs injected with some gorgeous flavour, it’s time to tray bake! Honourable mentions for the tray bake ingredients are chorizo, potatoes and orange zest. Chicken and chorizo is a match made in heaven, and when this chorizo bakes it releases gorgeous flavour into the base of the pan. The potatoes soak up that gorgeous flavour and bulk out the tray bake. The orange zest is the secret weapon of the whole dish and really adds a gorgeous burst of flavour.

Once you’ve nestled the chicken thighs into the tray, give it all an initial roast, take the tray out throw on some olives and cherry tomatoes, then roast again until cooked through.

Why take the tray out half way through cooking?

  1. I find that by putting the tomatoes in at the beginning, they release too much moisture and everything begins to steam instead of caramelize. Also I like olives a little cooked, not completely wrinkled. So both of these go in half way through.
  2. You want crispy potatoes on BOTH side, so flipping half way is always a good idea!
  3. In the bottom of the tray will be heaps of flavour, chuck that flavour right back onto the chicken for maximum flavour! The skin will still go crispy after the second stint in the oven.

How to make Spanish Chicken Tray Bake 3 step by step photos

Tips for the perfect Spanish Chicken Tray Bake

  • Cook the chicken skin side up and leave it skin side up. The skin is the most delicious part in my opinion and nobody wants soggy chicken skin!
  • Texture-wise, you want to keep the potatoes exposed to give them the best chance of getting crispy. On the other hand you want to hide the chorizo as much as possible, just to keep it from drying out.
  • A little grating of orange zest really brings this dish to life, don’t skip it!
  • By the end of the cooking process your tray is going to have a gorgeous layer of oily/fatty/flavour. Please, for heavens sake do not throw it away. Pour it over the chicken at the end, or turn it into a gravy (recipe for that below)

What can I serve with this?

Serving-wise I always go with a decent loaf of bread and a ton of butter. Because clearly the potatoes just aren’t enough for me 😂 Also goes perfectly with rice or just as it is!

If you like this sound of this tray bake be sure to check out my One Pot Spanish Chicken Orzo!

For more similar recipes be sure to give these a ganders too:

Easy One Pan Dinners

Alrighty, let’s tuck into the full recipe for this Spanish chicken tray bake shall we?

chicken tray bake served on plate with bread and butter with golden fork resting on side

How to make a Spanish Chicken Tray Bake (Full Recipe & Video)

tray bake fresh out the oven with metal serving spoon digging in

Spanish Chicken Tray Bake

This Spanish Chicken Tray Bake is absolutely bursting with flavour! Stress free dinners don't come more delicious than this!
5 from 16 votes
Print Pin Rate Share by Text
Servings (click & slide): 4
Course: Dinner / Main Course
Cuisine: Spanish
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Calories per serving: 838kcal
Cost per serving: £2.50 / $3

Equipment:

  • Large Deep Baking Tray (mine is 30cmx40cm / 12"x16")
  • Large Mixing Bowl, Tongs & Cling Film (for marinating chicken)
  • Sharp Knife & Chopping Board
  • Zester/Fine Grater (for orange zest)
  • Whisk

Ingredients (check list):

Marinade

  • 2lb/1kg bone-in skin-on Chicken Thighs (see notes)
  • 3 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 2 tsp Smoked Paprika (can sub regular paprika)
  • 1.5 tsp Oregano
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Black Pepper
  • 1/2 tsp Cayenne Pepper (reduce if you don't like spice)
  • 1/2 large Lemon juice only

Tray Bake

  • 14oz / 400g Baby Potatoes, halved
  • 7oz / 200g Spanish Chorizo, sliced into around 8 pieces (3cm/1")
  • 7oz / 200g Cherry Tomatoes
  • 2/3 cup / 100g pitted Mixed Spanish Olives, or olives of choice
  • 5-6 cloves of Garlic, lightly crushed (skins left on)
  • 2 small/medium White Onions, quartered & peeled
  • 2 red, yellow or orange Peppers, sliced in large wedges (2cm/ 3/4" wide)
  • 1/2 large Orange, zest only
  • few sprigs of Fresh Rosemary
  • Olive Oil, as needed
  • Salt & Pepper, as needed

Instructions:

  • Whisk together smoked paprika, oregano, salt, cayenne pepper & black pepper with olive oil and lemon juice in a large mixing bowl. Mix in the chicken thighs until completely coated, then tightly cover and marinate in the fridge for as long as you have time for (2 - 24 hours). If you're pushed for time just marinate at room temp whilst you prep the other ingredients.
  • In a large deep baking tray combine potatoes, peppers, onion, chorizo, rosemary and garlic with a light drizzle of oil and a pinch of salt & pepper. Nestle in the chicken thighs (skin side up) and brush with any leftover marinade. Ensure the potatoes are all visible to allow them to crisp, then make sure the chorizo is more hidden to prevent it from burning. Place in the oven at 200C/400F for 30mins.
  • Remove from the oven, flip the potatoes and baste the chicken with the juices in the base of the pan. Evenly scatter over the olives, tomatoes and orange zest, then place back in the oven for another 15mins, or until the chicken is piping hot through the centre and lightly charred/crisp on top. The tomatoes and olives should be slightly wrinkled with the potatoes soft all the way through.
  • Evenly divide everything for serving, then whisk the liquid left in the pan to combine the fats & juices. This is bonus flavour! Plus the garlic will be buttery soft, do with that what you will.

Quick 1 min demo!

Notes:

a) Can I use other parts of chicken? - You could use drumsticks or a mix or drumsticks and thighs, just be vigilant of timing if they are different sizes. You'll also want to flip the chicken drumsticks so both sides get crispy. I don't recommend using breasts, the tray is in the oven too long for them to stay moist. 
b) Serving - I love serving this with some bread to mop up all that gorgeous flavour in the pan. The garlic is so soft you'll be ale to spread it on the bread for bonus flavour!
c) Spice - Due to the cayenne pepper and chorizo, this dish has a gentle twang of spice. Nothing too overbearing though. If you're wary just halve the cayenne pepper.
d) UPDATED RECIPE - I updated the recipe on 17/03/23 and made the following changes:
  • Increased the number of baby potatoes and olives very slightly.
  • Lowered the time and temp slightly from 210C/410F for 55-60mins, to 200C/400F for 45mins. Although just be vigilant of large pieces of chicken incase they do take a little longer. The more I make this recipe the rarer it is I go past 45mins though.
  • Removed the gravy. The more I make this recipe the less I make it, and the juices in the pan are delicious enough. If you still enjoy the gravy it was just 1-2tbsp flour mixed in with the juices over medium heat, then 2cups/500ml whisked in with 1 tsp honey, a squeeze of lemon juices and s&p to taste.

Your Private Notes:

Nutrition:

Nutrition Facts
Spanish Chicken Tray Bake
Amount Per Serving
Calories 838 Calories from Fat 401
% Daily Value*
Fat 44.54g69%
Saturated Fat 12.234g61%
Trans Fat 0.063g
Polyunsaturated Fat 6.038g
Monounsaturated Fat 23.059g
Cholesterol 316mg105%
Sodium 1693mg71%
Potassium 1706mg49%
Carbohydrates 34.54g12%
Fiber 5.7g23%
Sugar 5.52g6%
Protein 73.23g146%
Vitamin A 4750IU95%
Vitamin C 109.7mg133%
Calcium 90mg9%
Iron 5.6mg31%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Nutrition is based on the absence of salt unless stated as a measurement in the ingredients. Cost is worked out based on ingredients bought from UK supermarkets, then divided by the number of servings. In both instances these values are just for guidance. Please check out my FAQ Page for more info.
Tried this recipe?Show me how you got on by tagging @dontgobaconmyheart_ on IG and #dontgobaconmyheart
Looking for more?You'll find plenty more delicious comfort food like this in my Debut Cookbook 'Comfy'

If you loved this Spanish Chicken Tray Bake then be sure to Pin it for later! Already made it or got a burning question? Give me a shout in the comments below and pick up your free ecookbook along the way!

DINNERS

YOU'LL NEVER STOP MAKING

A FREE EMAIL SERIES, FROM ONE FOODIE TO ANOTHER

5 KNOCKOUT

Leave a Reply

Recipe Rating




45 Comments

  • Reply
    Katie M
    April 26, 2023 at 3:01 am

    5 stars
    So, so delicious! Saw on IG. Simple but interesting ingredients. One pan clean up. You can’t beat that! A dinner to please any time. The smell whiles its cooking will have you drooling. Yum, yum, yum! Will make it again and again. Thanks so much for sharing!

    • Reply
      Chris Collins
      April 26, 2023 at 1:05 pm

      Ah this is so lovely to read, Katie! Thanks so much for the review 🙂 C.

  • Reply
    Carol
    March 16, 2023 at 12:34 pm

    This is such a good idea. All the basic meal in a pan.
    Could only find packages of 4 thighs. I was going to buy a second pack, but the prices! So I realize I will use those 4 thighs and just watch so they don’t cook too fast.
    I will add a carrot or two to the pan so there is another vegetable. I think it should be lovely in that juice.And carrot with orange is also a match made in heaven so I will add a bit more zest than called for.
    I am looking forward to this chicken and look forward to your great recipes!

  • Reply
    Gary Kelly
    February 21, 2023 at 1:35 pm

    5 stars
    Can I use wings instead of thighs?

    • Reply
      Chris Collins
      February 23, 2023 at 6:23 pm

      If they’re fairly large you might get away with it, my only concern is they might dry out with the long cooking time. You be vigilant and pull them out once they’re done. You can always carry on baking the rest of the traybake if it needs it 🙂 C.

  • Reply
    Dee
    January 11, 2023 at 5:08 am

    5 stars
    This is gorgeous. Omitted olives as we don’t like them. Easy to make and flavourful. Now we are having to be mindful of utility bills, this tray bakes and one pot recipes are idea. More please Chris

    • Reply
      Chris Collins
      January 11, 2023 at 7:17 am

      So great to hear this was a success, Dee! Thanks so much for the review 🙂 C.

  • Reply
    Desiree
    December 3, 2022 at 3:04 am

    5 stars
    This dish was amazing! Stress free preparation and beautiful presentation. Next time I will double the marinade and no need for gravy. The aroma had my neighbor in awe. It is definitely a go to dish when hosting dinner guests. Thank you!

    • Reply
      Chris Collins
      December 3, 2022 at 10:38 am

      So great to hear this went down well, Desiree! Thanks so much for the review 🙂 C.

  • Reply
    Eloise Lockhart-Brant
    July 21, 2022 at 6:59 pm

    Just cooked this for the family, a truimph and so easy!

    • Reply
      Chris Collins
      July 21, 2022 at 9:09 pm

      Great to hear, Eloise! 🙂

  • Reply
    Patti
    June 4, 2022 at 8:33 pm

    5 stars
    I left out the chorizo as we don’t care for it. It was absolutely delicious! Making it again for company this week.

    • Reply
      Chris Collins
      June 5, 2022 at 2:48 pm

      That’s great to hear, Patti! Thanks so much for the review 🙂

  • Reply
    Ade
    September 18, 2021 at 9:24 am

    Trying this today. Can you use raw chorizo, or is it best with cooked?

    • Reply
      Chris Collins
      September 20, 2021 at 1:40 pm

      I’ve not tried this but I imagine it’ll work just fine!

  • Reply
    Mallorie
    August 9, 2020 at 2:19 am

    5 stars
    Can I please ask when is the best time to add the orange zest? Your recipe states to add when first going in to the oven, yet your video shows it being added half way with the tomatoes and olives? Does it matter ie will the zest burn and become bitter if added at the beginning?

    • Reply
      Chris Collins
      August 13, 2020 at 5:37 pm

      Thanks for spotting that! It won’t make a huge difference either way – you baste half way which helps prevent the zest from burning if you do it at the start, but it’ll still add gorgeous flavour if you add it half way 🙂

  • Reply
    Jessie
    August 7, 2020 at 11:13 pm

    5 stars
    This is SO delicious! I love that it’s easy enough for a weeknight meal, yet special enough for company. It’s become a staple in my house – we love it! Thank you for such a terrific recipe!

    • Reply
      Chris Collins
      August 8, 2020 at 8:53 pm

      That’s awesome to hear, Jessie! So glad it’s a hit in your house! 🙂

  • Reply
    Espi
    May 27, 2019 at 7:49 pm

    5 stars
    This has become my “go to” dish for company! Tastes AMAZING! It looks beautiful in the center of the table (who needs a center piece). I serve it with a basket of crusty bread and a good chardonnay! Every one who’s had it loved it.

    • Reply
      Chris
      May 28, 2019 at 12:48 pm

      That’s so great to hear Espi! You have me craving this with a basket of crusty bread and a bottle of chardonnay now! 🙂

  • Reply
    Meryl Whiteley
    May 9, 2019 at 1:09 pm

    5 stars
    I’ve made this recipe twice now and it’s so easy and oh so yummy.

    • Reply
      Chris
      May 9, 2019 at 6:52 pm

      Yay! So glad you love it Meryl 🙂

  • Reply
    Terence Pearson
    April 16, 2019 at 1:28 pm

    Cook this for lunch today to share with our teenage grandsons. Absolutely scrumptious, I think they now regard me as a top chef.
    Thanks, I’m sure it will become a family favourite.

    • Reply
      Chris
      April 16, 2019 at 1:40 pm

      That’s awesome to hear! So glad everyone enjoyed. Thanks so coming back and letting me know 🙂

  • Reply
    Carolyn
    January 31, 2019 at 3:00 pm

    I made this for dinner last night without olives, and it was fantastic! So easy to make, and so flavourful – will definitely make again. Looking forward to the leftovers! Thanks for sharing 🙂

    • Reply
      Chris
      January 31, 2019 at 3:06 pm

      So glad you enjoyed it Carolyn and happy to hear you’ll be making it again! Thanks for popping back and sharing you feedback 🙂

    • Reply
      Kayla MacMullen
      July 23, 2019 at 10:44 pm

      Love this recipe, it’s a family pleaser! Just baked some fresh bread to have with it.

      • Reply
        Chris Collins
        July 24, 2019 at 12:23 pm

        So glad you love it, Kayla! Thanks for coming back and letting me know how you got on 🙂

  • Reply
    Caroline
    December 15, 2018 at 5:58 pm

    Making these for the third time. Such an easy flavoursome dish. Special enough for a dinner party yet easy enough for everyday supper. A keeper!!

    • Reply
      Chris
      December 15, 2018 at 8:36 pm

      It’s such a handy go-to recipe isn’t it!? So glad you love it and thanks for coming back and sharing your thoughts 🙂

  • Reply
    Emily
    November 4, 2018 at 7:30 pm

    5 stars
    I made this tonight. My hubby absolutely loved it!! The orange zest is sublime! Definitely a regular ! Thank you

    • Reply
      Chris
      November 4, 2018 at 10:11 pm

      Hi Emily! So glad you loved it! The orange zest really adds soul to the dish doesn’t it? Thanks for coming back and sharing your experience 🙂

  • Reply
    Catherine Davis
    November 1, 2018 at 5:26 pm

    5 stars
    This recipe was delicious! My husband is allergic to wheat and then I have a teenage son who eats like a horse and a teenage daughter who doesn’t want to eat anything and everyone loved it- a very rare thing in my house!! Thank you so much!!

    • Reply
      Chris
      November 2, 2018 at 10:57 am

      Hi Catherine! That’s so awesome to hear, so glad you and your family loved the recipe! Thanks for coming back and sharing your feedback 🙂

  • Reply
    Tisha
    August 15, 2018 at 4:20 am

    5 stars
    Fantastic easy dinner to throw together! Easy clean up also!!

    • Reply
      Chris
      August 15, 2018 at 1:37 pm

      Yup, such an easy clean up which is always nice!

  • Reply
    Caroline
    August 15, 2018 at 3:27 am

    5 stars
    I lived in Spain for a while so am a big fan of Spanish flavors. This looks like a tasty comforting meal.

    • Reply
      Chris
      August 15, 2018 at 1:37 pm

      Ugh, so jealous you lived in Spain!!

  • Reply
    Dana | Mama Needs Cake
    August 15, 2018 at 3:21 am

    5 stars
    I definitely need to make this, it sounds absolutely wonderful.

    • Reply
      Chris
      August 15, 2018 at 1:33 pm

      Thanks Dana, enjoy!! 🙂

  • Reply
    camila
    August 15, 2018 at 1:29 am

    5 stars
    This looks amazing and it’s the most beautiful easy weeknight dinner. prep the veggies and chicken marinade in the am, then bake at night. easy peasy and super delicious!!

    • Reply
      Chris
      August 15, 2018 at 1:33 pm

      Couldn’t have put it better myself! Thanks, Camila 🙂

  • Reply
    Stephanie
    August 14, 2018 at 11:10 pm

    5 stars
    I’m all about the easy one pan dinners! This sounds fabulous and I bet the orange zest adds a ton of flavor.

    • Reply
      Chris
      August 15, 2018 at 1:29 pm

      Allllll about the orange zest!!

    5 KNOCKOUT

    DINNERS

    YOU'LL NEVER STOP MAKING!

    A FREE EMAIL SERIES, FROM ONE FOODIE TO ANOTHER