Cranberry Balsamic Roasted Chicken {Paleo}

Roasted chicken made with a delicious balsamic chicken marinade, cranberries, and fresh thyme. This paleo one pan chicken recipe is beyond easy! Cranberry Balsamic Roasted Chicken is a simple yet healthy dinner for your holiday table. The sweet and tangy balsamic chicken marinade makes this one pan roasted chicken extra juicy and extra crispy. Great idea for meal prep or make ahead meals.

And it’s November! Bring on the Turkey, Cranberry, and Stuffing. Actually, this Paleo One Pan Cranberry Balsamic Roasted Chicken dish is not quite the traditional Thanksgiving food, but I have a story to go with that. As always.

So remember when I posted this one pot honey orange roasted chicken recipe last season? Yes, that deliciousness. Well, that recipe creation was due the “Thanksgiving PURGE of 2014.” LOL! Purge as in…. my husband got SO SICK off of turkey, like food poisoning sick, that he banned turkey from his diet indefinitely. Although, I have snuck in a few turkey recipes here and there. Shhh… don’t tell him. To be brutally honest, we aren’t big fans of roasted turkey anyway. But balsamic roasted chicken? HECK TO THE YEA! Ground turkey in chili is one of my turkey exceptions —> BRING IT ON! You betcha!

Turkey lovers, don’t hate me. I will for SURE being posting gluten free Turkey recipes, but as for now, we’re gonna give those CHICKEN dishes some more love.

Ahhh…. it’s just so dangerously delicious!

I know what you’re thinking. Dude, it’s just chicken. What’s so EPIC about one pan Balsamic Roasted Chicken? Besides the fact that it’s not turkey. Haha!

Well, for one, you LEAVE the skin on. Two, you marinade each thigh in a cranberry balsamic sauce. That sauce is key for that ONE PAN flavor, ya’ll!

And three, you add EXTRA cranberries (fresh or frozen) to your pan before roasting. Hey, when life hands you a bowl of cherries cranberries, you make ALL THE THINGS with cranberries. Including a tangy balsamic chicken marinade. YUP!

The outcome? Tart and tangy crispy juicy Cranberry Balsamic Roasted Chicken.
How long does it take to cook balsamic roasted chicken?

Take a peek at this video and you’ll see that it comes together SO quickly, and at 375 F., it only needs about 40 minutes to cook.

One pan of DANGEROUSLY DELICIOUS GOODNESS! See, now you know why this slow roasted chicken recipe gets high fives in the Cotter household.
Balsamic Roasted Chicken Recipe Notes

Just a few minor (yet uber important) details you need to know. The nerdy nutrition and cooking kind. Can you hang? Yes, yes you can! Stay put!
If you are looking for a lighter balsamic chicken, you can most definitely use skinless chicken breast but the roasting time will be quicker. It won’t be nearly as juicy, but still delicious. This is why keeping the SKIN on when roasting rocks!

As mentioned above, you can use skinless chicken, but ya’ll… THE SKIN is where the nutrients are and what makes this Paleo Roasted Cranberry Balsamic Chicken SUPER crispy. The skin contains a good source of heart healthy unsaturated fat. Which is good for those watching their cholesterol! Plus it’s rich in vitamin K! A vitamin we often overlook.
Cranberries! They are in season and I couldn’t be more ecstatic. I ADORE cranberries (like in smoothies) and you’re gonna see a lot more cranberry recipes to come. Sweet and savory! But let’s talk about using cranberries in the balsamic chicken marinade. Oh heavens yes! It’s a natural sweetener, rich in Vitamin C and other anti-oxidants. Plus cranberries are unique in that they have the ability to provide us with digestive support. TRULY! One of the worlds healthiest foods!
Balsamic Chicken Marinade Notes
Don’t skip the 24 hour marinating time. As tempting as it might be to make the recipe come together more quickly, the balsamic chicken marinade needs time to work its way through the chicken. It’s one of the important keys to a moist and juicy slow roasted chicken. Nobody wants to eat dried out chicken for dinner, right?

Let’s conclude. This paleo Cranberry Balsamic Roasted Chicken:
contains healthy unsaturated fats
is naturally sweetened
super juicy
extra crispy
easy to make in one pan, and
is loaded with extra roasted cranberries to support your immune system and digestive system

Think of this dish as detox without the detox! Haha. You know I hate that word. Either way, this chicken is….. Um —> EPICNESS!

One Pan Cranberry Balsamic Roasted Chicken {Paleo}

Prep Time: 35 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 65 minutes
Yield: 5
Category: main, dinner
Method: oven
Cuisine: American


Roasted chicken made with a delicious balsamic chicken marinade, cranberries, and fresh thyme. This paleo one pan chicken recipe is so easy to make!

2.5 lbs chicken thighs or breasts, with skin on (around 4 to 6 chicken thighs or breast) See notes for lower fat option
fresh thyme
a sprinkle of dried Italian herbs (optional)
1/3 cup to 1/2 cup fresh cranberries (or previously frozen)
1 tbsp each maple syrup and balsamic vinegar mixed together to coat chicken during roasting
For the Marinade:
1/3 cup cranberries
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp gluten free tamari sauce or coconut aminos (optional)
2 tbsp maple syrup
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp black peppers
2 garlic cloves (or 1 tsp minced)

Clean your chicken, then place in a roasting or baking dish. Set aside.
Make the Balsamic Chicken Marinade:
Blend all the balsamic chicken marinade ingredients listed above in a food processor or blender until liquified and smooth.
Pour marinade over the chicken thighs, coating evenly.
Cover and place in fridge to marinate for 30 minutes or up to 24 hrs.
Once marinated, preheat oven to 375F.
Remove chicken from fridge.
Add extra 1/3 to 1/2 cup cranberries, thyme, and Italian herbs to the dish. Spread it out evenly on and around the chicken.
Bake skin side down first for 25-30 minutes.
Remove and turn skin side up. Check for doneness. Then brush each chicken skin with the maple syrup/balsamic vinegar combo.
Add more seasoning (like dried herbs, salt, pepper) to the top if desired. NOTE: If using fresh herbs, wait to add until after you remove the chicken from the oven.
Depending on the thickness of your chicken thighs, either bake a little longer skin side up, then broil. Or if chicken is almost done and not pink, then skip extra baking and just broil for about 3-4 minutes or until skin is crispy and chicken is cooked evenly inside. NOTE: If using boneless chicken, cooking time will be around 35 minutes total.
After thoroughly cooked, remove from oven.
Spoon the sauce from the pan onto each chicken thigh/breast and a pinch of black pepper or cracked pepper.
Serve with the roasted cranberries on top and any extra fresh herbs desired.


This is a great recipe to make ahead. Prep the marinade hours before, then just pop in the oven the next day or later in day.
Lower Fat option if you use skinless chicken. Preparation for skinless chicken: The cooking time will be 20-25 minutes total. No broiling needed.

Cranberry Balsamic Roasted Chicken {Paleo} Cranberry Balsamic Roasted Chicken {Paleo} Reviewed by Admin on December 17, 2018 Rating: 5