How Long To Bake Chicken Drumsticks (Legs)

5 from 2 votes
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Baked chicken legs is a simple meal that can be prepared in under an hour with minimal ingredients. This post will answer how long to bake chicken drumsticks and includes an easy recipe for juicy, flavorful chicken legs.

Plate of chicken drumsticks.


Baking chicken in the oven is really simple like baked chicken thighs, chicken wings, and chicken breast. These baked chicken legs make an easy meal perfect for a busy weeknight or weekend.

How long to bake chicken legs?

How long do you bake chicken legs in the oven? Using a conventional oven, it will take about 40-45 minutes at 400 degrees F. You will know when your chicken is done cooking when reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.

Ingredients needed

  • Chicken drumsticks (chicken legs) – I recommend getting the legs with the skin on.
  • Olive oil – Oil is used to coat the chicken and helps crisp of the skin.
  • Seasonings – We are using salt, ground black pepper, paprika, and garlic powder. Feel free to use your favorite chicken seasoning like lemon pepper, bbq seasoning, or a homemade seasoning mix.
Plate of chicken legs, bowl of oil, bowl of seasonings.

How to long to cook chicken legs in the oven

Step one: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper and spray with non-stick cooking spray. Pat the chicken drumsticks dry with paper towels to help keep the skin crispy when baking.

Step two: Mix together the olive oil and seasonings in a bowl. Set aside. Place the chicken in a large zip-top bag or a large bowl.

Chicken legs in a bag and bowl of seasonings.

Step three: Pour the oil and seasonings over the chicken and toss around to completely coat.

Chicken legs in zip-top bag with seasonings.

Step four: Place chicken drumsticks on prepared baking sheet and arrange in a single layer. Cook for 40-45 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F.

Baked chicken leg on foil.

What is the best temperature to cook chicken drumsticks in the oven?

Chicken legs can be baked at different temperatures. To get crispy skin it’s best to bake them at a high heat. The best temperatures to bake chicken legs is either 400 degrees F or 425 degrees F.

The cooking time will vary slightly depending on the oven temperature and the size of the drumsticks.

400 degrees F: 40-45 minutes cook time

425 degrees F: 35-40 minutes cook time

How do you know when chicken drumsticks are done baking?

Using a meat thermometer is the best way to ensure your chicken legs have baked long enough to be cooked through. Make sure that the internal temperature reaches at least 165 degrees F.

When the chicken legs are done cooking the juices will run clear and you should be able to see that the meat is completely cooked when you cut it off the bone.

Recipe tips

  • Patting the chicken legs dry will help keep the skin crispy by removing any excess moisture.
  • Take the drumsticks out of the refrigerator to warm up to room temperature before cooking. This help for even cooking.
  • If you are cooking more than 6 drumsticks, add another tablespoon of olive oil.
  • Don’t cover the chicken legs when baking to make sure you get crispy skin.
  • No need to flip the drumsticks over halfway through baking.
  • Use a meat thermometer to ensure the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F.
  • Let the chicken legs rest for about 5 minutes after cooking to seal in juices and keep in moist.

How to store leftover baked chicken legs

Store: Make sure to let the chicken cool to room temperature and then store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4-5 days. Reheat in the oven at 400 degrees F or in the air fryer at 400 degrees F until heated through.

What to serve with crispy baked chicken legs

Chicken pairs well with a variety of side dishes like baked potatoes, fries, roasted vegetables, carrots, potato salad, and more.

Can you cook chicken legs in the air fryer?

Yes, it’s easy to make air fryer chicken drumsticks in about 30 minutes.

More easy chicken recipes

Let me know if you tried this easy chicken leg recipe.

Baked chicken legs on a plate.
5 from 2 votes

How Long To Bake Chicken Drumsticks At 400 Degrees F

By Heather
Learn how long to bake chicken drumsticks in the oven.
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes
Total: 50 minutes
Servings: 6


  • 6 chicken drumsticks
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon paprika


  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet or large casserole dish with foil. Lightly coat the foil with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Take the packaging off the chicken drumsticks. Pat dry with a paper towel and then place the chicken in a large zip-top bag.
  • Pour olive oil into a small bowl. Stir in seasonings. Pour the mixture into the bag with the chicken drumsticks and move the chicken around to coat with the oil and seasonings.
  • Place the chicken drumsticks on the prepared baking sheet. Bake for 45 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches at least 165 degrees F.
  • Serve warm.



Calories: 144kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 13g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 0.03g | Cholesterol: 70mg | Sodium: 467mg | Potassium: 182mg | Fiber: 0.2g | Sugar: 0.04g | Vitamin A: 158IU | Vitamin C: 0.01mg | Calcium: 9mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
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