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Coffee-Brined Chicken Legs Recipe

Updated on July 28, 2012

Coffee-Brined Chicken Legs

Serve coffee-brined chicken legs as a delicious and inexpensive option for dinner.
Serve coffee-brined chicken legs as a delicious and inexpensive option for dinner. | Source

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Budget-Friendly Chicken Legs Recipe

If you are looking for a delicious and inexpensive dinner recipe, try these very budget-friendly coffee-brined chicken legs. Although you can brine a whole or any other part of a chicken, I usually reserve this recipe for drumsticks because they often go on sale in my area for only $0.99 per pound.

Our family of four can feast on 12 of these tasty drumsticks for around $3.00 or just $0.75 per person. So if you are living on a budget and these numbers sound good to you, read further for a list of ingredients and step-by-step instructions for creating this yummy chicken legs recipe.

Make Your Own Chicken Brine

Spices
Liquids
Garlic
Beer
Thyme
Wine
Rosemary
Apple Juice
Bay Leaf
Cider
Red Pepper Flakes
Orange Juice
Ginger
Lemon Juice
Cinnamon
Lime Juice
Mustard Seed
Chicken Broth
Coriander Seed
Beef Broth
Chili Powder
Tea
Onion Powder
Apple Cider Vinegar
Pepper
Hot Sauce
Paprika
Soy Sauce
Brown Sugar
Honey

Brining Chicken

If you prefer a more tender and moist piece of chicken, brining is definitely the way to go. A brine is a mixture of salt and water used to make meats more flavorful. By a process called osmosis, the salty mixture is absorbed by the meat's cells which helps the meat to reach a more tender and moist state. Brining is a cooking technique used with many different meats such as turkey, pork, ham, beef, and even seafood.

Although brining meat brings more flavor to the dish, it is not a recommended cooking method for those on a low sodium diet due to its high sodium content. If you are on this kind of diet, try to find brining recipes that use alternate spices to replace the salt. Refer to the table to the right for several helpful suggestions for making your own brine mixture.

Cook Time

Prep time: 2 hours 10 min
Cook time: 35 min
Ready in: 2 hours 45 min
Yields: Serves 6 people 2 chicken legs

Ingredients You Will Need

The ingredients for coffee-brined chicken legs.
The ingredients for coffee-brined chicken legs. | Source

Coffee-Brined Chicken Legs Ingredients

  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups brewed coffee, unflavored
  • 1/4 cup salt
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon, ground
  • 12 chicken drumsticks, approximately 3 pounds

Nutrition for Coffee-Brined Chicken Legs

Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 4 oz
Calories 152
Calories from Fat36
% Daily Value *
Fat 4 g6%
Saturated fat 1 g5%
Unsaturated fat 2 g
Carbohydrates 4 g1%
Sugar 3 g
Fiber 1 g4%
Protein 24 g48%
Cholesterol 87 mg29%
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.

Sugar Substitutes

If you prefer to keep the sugar out of your recipes, try these substitutes to sweeten up your brine mixture:

  • Brown Sugar
  • Honey
  • Molasses
  • Agave Nectar

Instructions for Coffee-Brined Chicken Legs

  1. To prepare the brine mixture, add the water, coffee, salt, and sugar in a large bowl. Stir these ingredients together until the sugar and salt are dissolved into the liquid.
  2. Add the chili powder, hot sauce, garlic powder, and cinnamon to the above mixture and stir well.
  3. Place the chicken legs into a 13x9 dish and pour the brine mixture on top of the chicken. Cover the dish with a lid and chill in the refrigerator for 2 hours.
  4. Set your oven to broil. If your oven has a high or low broil, I suggest using the lower setting to prevent over browning the skin of the chicken legs. For an easier clean up, line your baking pan with aluminum foil.
  5. Place your chicken legs onto the baking pan and broil for 10 minutes. Once they are browned, turn the legs over and broil for an additional 10 minutes.
  6. Remove the chicken legs and reset the oven to bake at 350 degrees. Place the chicken back in the oven and bake for 15 more minutes or until the inside of the chicken is no longer pink.

How to Make Coffee-Brined Chicken Legs

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Mix together the water, coffee, salt, and sugar in a large bowl.Add the chili powder, hot sauce, garlic powder, and cinnamon to the mixture and stir well.Pour the brine mixture over the chicken legs in a 13 x9 dish.Cover with lid and refrigerate for 2 hours.Remove chicken legs and place on a baking pan lined with aluminum foil.Broil on low setting for 10 minutes. Turn chicken legs over and broil for an additional 10 minutes.Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.Our finished plate of coffee-brined chicken legs.Coffee-brined chicken legs served with macaroni and cheese and mashed potatoes.
Mix together the water, coffee, salt, and sugar in a large bowl.
Mix together the water, coffee, salt, and sugar in a large bowl. | Source
Add the chili powder, hot sauce, garlic powder, and cinnamon to the mixture and stir well.
Add the chili powder, hot sauce, garlic powder, and cinnamon to the mixture and stir well. | Source
Pour the brine mixture over the chicken legs in a 13 x9 dish.
Pour the brine mixture over the chicken legs in a 13 x9 dish. | Source
Cover with lid and refrigerate for 2 hours.
Cover with lid and refrigerate for 2 hours. | Source
Remove chicken legs and place on a baking pan lined with aluminum foil.
Remove chicken legs and place on a baking pan lined with aluminum foil. | Source
Broil on low setting for 10 minutes. Turn chicken legs over and broil for an additional 10 minutes.
Broil on low setting for 10 minutes. Turn chicken legs over and broil for an additional 10 minutes. | Source
Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.
Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. | Source
Our finished plate of coffee-brined chicken legs.
Our finished plate of coffee-brined chicken legs. | Source
Coffee-brined chicken legs served with macaroni and cheese and mashed potatoes.
Coffee-brined chicken legs served with macaroni and cheese and mashed potatoes. | Source

Brining Chicken Poll

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Simple Chicken Drumstick Recipe

This easy to make and inexpensive coffee-brined chicken legs recipe is perfect to serve at your next family dinner. These drumsticks are also grill-friendly and make a great addition to any cookout or picnic. If you have any leftovers, be sure to properly store these in the refrigerator so you are able to have a quick and tasty lunch for the next day. I have to admit that this chicken recipe is absolutely delicious straight out of the fridge.

I hope the above pictures of our coffee-brined chicken legs recipe has tempted you enough to give it a try. If you have any questions or comments about this cheap meal idea or have any other tasty brine mixtures to share, feel free to leave these in the comment section below.

Comments

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    • josh3418 profile image

      Joshua Zerbini 4 years ago from Pennsylvania

      Alissa,

      These looks delicious! I think I could even make this, and I am recent college graduate. :) Awesome recipe I am bookmarking this hub for future reference and immediately pinning. Thanks for the share Alissa.

    • profile image

      Ghaelach 4 years ago

      Hi Alissa.

      Chicken is my favorite meat and I'm always interested in the many different ways you can have a chicken meal.

      This one sounds and looks great and I will be trying it out in the next few days.

      LOL Ghaaelach

    • Shesabutterfly profile image

      Cholee Clay 4 years ago from Wisconsin

      I am always looking for budget friendly meals and these chicken legs look perfect! I've never heard of brining but it looks so easy, I'm definitely going to be trying this. Another great recipe hub:) Voted up and shared!

    • Paul Edmondson profile image

      Paul Edmondson 4 years ago from Burlingame, CA

      I can't tell you how happy I get when I see people put so much love into a hub. That's a fantastic leading photo. Looks delicious. It's challenging to eat healthy, but inexpensively. Our kids are a bit finicky as well. They won't eat chicken thighs, but they enjoy the drumstick.

      I've done quite a bit of brining, but never with coffee. I'll give it a shot:)

    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Vicki L Hodges 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      Yum! These look great--and inexpensive, too. Thanks for the recipe!

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 4 years ago

      Your first photo really pulls the interest on this hub. Yum! I haven't heard of this method of brining, but it does look like a winner. How can you go wrong using chicken and coffee, two of my favorite food items.

    • alissaroberts profile image
      Author

      Alissa Roberts 4 years ago from Normandy, TN

      Thanks so much Josh! This is a great recipe for those just starting out on their own - super easy and very inexpensive! So happy to hear you will be trying it out :) Appreciate you stopping by and for the pin!

    • alissaroberts profile image
      Author

      Alissa Roberts 4 years ago from Normandy, TN

      Hi Ghaelach! Our family is chicken fanatics due to it being the only meat both of my boys will eat well :) It is too funny how many different ways I have learned how to make chicken over the years! Happy to hear you will be giving it a try! Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting!

    • alissaroberts profile image
      Author

      Alissa Roberts 4 years ago from Normandy, TN

      Thanks Shesabutterfly! This recipe is super budget-friendly and making the brine is so easy to make. Happy to hear you are going to give it a try - hope it turns out well for you! Appreciate the vote up and share!

    • alissaroberts profile image
      Author

      Alissa Roberts 4 years ago from Normandy, TN

      Thanks so much Paul! You have made my day with your sweet comment! Chicken is the one meat that both my boys will eat well and this recipe has been kid-tested and kid-approved by my very picky eaters :) So very happy to hear that you will be trying the recipe out - hope your family enjoys it! Appreciate you taking the time to read and comment!

    • alissaroberts profile image
      Author

      Alissa Roberts 4 years ago from Normandy, TN

      Thanks Victoria! They are delicious - hope you get the chance to try it out! Appreciate you stopping by!

    • alissaroberts profile image
      Author

      Alissa Roberts 4 years ago from Normandy, TN

      Thanks teaches! Happy to hear the first photo is a winner! My family cracks up at me when I set dinner out on the table and then yell "wait I have to take pictures of the food!" Haha :) This brining method is awesome. It really makes the chicken so moist and tender! Appreciate your visit and sweet comments!

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