sweet and sour chicken drumsticks

Easy Sweet and Sour Chicken Drumsticks

An easy chicken recipe that’s a favourite among kids. It can be made ahead of time and reheated. 

sweet and sour chicken drumsticks

This recipe is extra easy to put together.

sweet and sour chicken drumsticks

The flavourful sauce – made with orange juice, molasses and chili sauce – comes together in two minutes and then you put everything in the oven. All you need to do is baste the chicken a few times as it cooks.

The sliced lemon adds a little zing to the sauce and the lemons caramelize nicely so can be eaten along with the chicken.

This method of cooking is ideal for chicken drumsticks since braising them in the flavourful sauce makes the meat extra tender. The recipe works well with chicken thighs too.

If you have made our Oven Baked Spareribs recipe you’ll see that we have used the same delicious sauce recipe.

Quick tips:

  • This recipe can be baked ahead of time (like the night before), refrigerated (sauce and all) and then reheated.
  • You can finish this recipe on the barbecue for a bit of smoky flavour (5-10 minutes on the grill).
  • Make a double batch of the sauce so you have it on hand for next time.
  • Look for thin-skinned lemons and slice them as thinly as possible.
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Easy Sweet and Sour Chicken Drumsticks

Sweet and sour chicken drumsticks recipe cooked in a flavourful sauce made with orange juice, molasses and chili sauce.

  • Author: Crosby Molasses
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 75 minutes
  • Total Time: 90 minutes
  • Yield: 68 serving(s) 1x
  • Category: Entrees and sides

Ingredients

Scale
  • 3 lbs. chicken drumsticks
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • A few grinds of black pepper
  • 1 lemon, thinly sliced, seeds removed
  • ¾ cup chopped onion
  • 1/3 cup chili sauce (choose gluten-free if necessary)
  • 2 Tbsp. dry mustard (powder)
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • ¾ cup orange juice
  • 1 tsp. lemon juice

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F
  2. Remove skin from chicken and place in a covered roasting pan or Dutch oven. (Make sure the pan is large enough to accommodate the chicken in a single layer.)
  3. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and dress with lemon slices and sprinkle over the onions.
  4. In a medium bowl whisk the chili sauce, mustard powder, brown sugar, molasses, orange juice and lemon juice.
  5. Pour half of the mixture over the chicken, cover and bake for 30 minutes, basting once with another spoonful of the sauce.
  6. Remove lid and continue to bake for another 30-45 minutes, or until meat is tender. Baste them a few times with remaining sauce and pan sauces. (Bake them longer if you want them a little sticky).

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Comments

  • January 28, 2021
    reply

    Donna

    I enjoy these recipe selections very much. I’m a diabetic and do have to be careful regarding sugar and carbs.

  • April 27, 2020
    reply

    Anne Girard

    Would this recipe be manageable with chicken breasts? I don’t have any drumsticks on hand…. thank you!

  • March 19, 2020
    reply

    Edith Elliot

    I just loved the Gingerbread cookie recipe. Tastes like my Grandmothers.
    I use to have a recipe for Molasses Taffy apples. Do you have this recipe?

    • March 26, 2020
      reply

      Crosby Molasses

      Hi Edith, we no longer have a recipe for taffy apples.

  • July 4, 2019
    reply

    Vera

    I love your recipes and of course I also love molasses. Please keep them coming . I have tried some of recipes and enjoyed them very much and I will keep trying more recipes ..
    I live alone so I can not make to many … when I cook I usually make enough for 2 meals .. Thank you very much .

  • October 12, 2016
    reply

    Mae Atwell

    Yes, I would like to receive gluten free recipes by e-mail

    Thank you

    • October 13, 2016
      reply

      Kelsey Reid

      Hi Mae, if you’d like to receive recipes by email, simply enter your email into the subscription box at the end of the blog post.

  • June 16, 2016
    reply

    mary kontos

    sometimes the oldies are the goodies. There weren’t as many choices on the store shelves. ie; bottled canned and pre made.

  • January 23, 2016
    reply

    Mary-Lyn

    Curious, why thinly slice the lemons when the recipe only calls for lemon juice?

    • July 4, 2016
      reply

      Hi Mary-lyn, you can cook the lemons along with the chicken and eat them together, so the lemon will adopt flavoring from the chicken

  • July 31, 2015
    reply

    Fern Sheppad

    we have sweet and sour recipe from early 1960 home Ec. textbook. Still works today. We tweak it a little here and there. Same for carrot pudding, pumpkin pie, cream puffs and whipped cream and a whole lot of other goodies – yummy yummy yummy

    • September 4, 2015
      reply

      Hi Fern, Your old cookbook sounds wonderful. Sometimes those older recipes are the best.

  • July 26, 2015
    reply

    Sandy VonAlma

    I want to try these soon. They look really good

  • July 21, 2015
    reply

    NOREEN BARRIE

    I AM 76 AND ALWAYS ENJOY CROSBY’S MOLASSES GREAT RECIPE

  • July 8, 2015
    reply

    Alice

    Look very testy

  • July 6, 2015
    reply

    Corsina fewer

    Always looking for new recipes and these look great.

  • June 27, 2015
    reply

    Bettyanne

    SOUNDS GREAT

  • June 16, 2015
    reply

    andree

    Looks delicious, can’t wait for recipes.

  • June 16, 2015
    reply

    andree

    Looks delicious, can’t wait for recipes.

  • June 11, 2015
    reply

    Bess Comeau

    love your recipes! we grew up eating Crosby’s molasses!

    • July 5, 2016
      reply

      Thanks, Bess!

    • March 19, 2020
      reply

      MRS DORIS W JAMES /

      I love your recipes. always a hit

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