- 3 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
- kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 large red onion, peeled and sliced 1/4-inch thick
- 1 red bell pepper, sliced ¼-inch thick
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 3/4 pound sweet Italian sausage
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2/3 cup pickled peppers (such as peppadew), plus 2 tablespoons brine from the jar
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley (optional)
This dinner has all the big, hearty flavors of chicken scarpariello but comes together quickly and easily on a sheet pan. Translated to “shoemaker’s chicken,” a nod to its humble origins, chicken scarpariello is a classic Italian-American dish that pairs chicken with sausage, peppers (both red bell and pickled) and a rich, tangy sauce. It’s traditionally braised on the stovetop — starting with browning the chicken, sausage and vegetables in sequential steps, then combining everything for a slow simmer. Though not difficult, this chicken dish requires a level of time and attention that may be hard to muster on a busy night. Enter this reimagined sheet-pan version: It keeps the spirit of the classic recipe intact (including the must-have pan sauce!) but streamlines the steps so dinner can be on the table in well under an hour.
Technique Tips: Prep the ingredients as you cook versus having everything ready beforehand (note: the instructions are written this way below to save you time). Start the chicken thighs, skin-side down, on a heated sheet pan for better browning and crispier skin. Stagger the entry of ingredients, based on their cooking times, so everything is done at the same time, and nothing is overcooked. Create the sauce directly on the sheet pan — a combination of chicken stock, tomato paste and pickled pepper brine with the rendered chicken fat — then let it reduce until thickened and glossy during the final minutes. Finish the dish under the broiler to crisp up the chicken even more.
Additional Notes: Reach for jarred pickled peppers, such as peppadews, when making this dish. Since heat levels vary from brand to brand, taste one first and adjust the amount you use accordingly. Serve with pasta or crusty bread to soak up every last bit of the savory sauce.
Heat oven to 450 F. Place an empty 13-by-18-inch sheet pan into the oven to heat. (Don’t line with foil or parchment.)2.
Pat the chicken thighs dry. Place them in a large bowl and season on both sides with salt and pepper. Add onions, peppers, oregano, olive oil, and salt. Mix well to evenly coat everything in the oil and seasonings.3.
Remove the sheet pan from the oven (careful, it’ll be hot!) and place the chicken thighs, skin side down. Nestle the peppers and onions around the chicken in an even layer. Transfer to the oven and cook for 10 minutes. (Save the now empty bowl for the next step!)4.
Remove the sausage from the casings, and, using your hands, tear each link into bite-sized pieces (about 3/4-inch in size). Place the sausage in the bowl.5.
When the timer goes off, nestle the sausage coins around the chicken. Cook for an additional 6 minutes.6.
In a small bowl or measuring cup, combine the chicken stock, tomato paste, pickled peppers and pickled pepper brine.7.
Once the chicken and sausage are finished cooking, lower the oven to 425 F. Flip the chicken and pour the stock mixture around (but not over the top of) the chicken thighs. Continue roasting until the chicken is done and the sauce has reduced, about 10 minutes, or until the chicken has reached an internal temperature of 165 F. Run the pan under the broiler to crisp up the skin. Note: Because of the pan sauce, it works best to place the top rack at least 6 to 8 inches from the heating element.8.
Garnish with parsley, if using. Serve warm with pasta or crusty bread.
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