When roasting chicken legs, it can be a good idea to wash and dry the chicken pieces to make sure they are clean; this will also ensure they can absorb the seasonings easily. Chicken legs can be dipped in a breaded coating, rubbed with herbs, or marinated to give them extra flavor. They should be cooked at high heat until they reach a temperature of at least 160° Fahrenheit (71° C). Sprinkling them with a little bit of citrus juice or olive oil will help keep them from drying out during the roasting process.
Running the chicken legs under a stream of cool water can help remove any artificial dyes that were added at the processing plant. Next, cooks can shake the legs gently to remove excess water. It can be helpful to pat the legs dry with a paper towel after doing so, because seasonings may not adhere to the meat if it is wet.
A number of seasonings can be used when roasting chicken legs. Some of the more popular ones include rosemary, garlic, thyme, or garlic salt. Cooks can add their own blend of spices or herbs to the meat, or they can buy rubs or breaded coatings designed especially for roasting chicken legs. They may also want to use different spices in conjunction with a marinade, and some good marinades to try include Italian salad dressing, pineapple juice, or sweet and sour sauce to name a few.
Roasting chicken legs should be done between 400° and 450° Fahrenheit (204° to 232° C) for around 30 to 40 minutes. Cooking chicken in this manner can reduce the risk of salmonella poisoning because high heat can kill this bacteria. It can be a good idea to check the internal temperature of the chicken pieces with a meat thermometer to make sure they are at least 160° Fahrenheit (71° C) and that the meat is light brown, rather than pink or red.
Cooking chicken legs at high temperatures can sometimes result in dry meat, so it is important to moisten the chicken pieces from time to time during the roasting process. One way to do this is by sprinkling them with lime or lemon juice, or by basting the meat with a mixture of herbs and oil. It can be helpful to do this two or three times while roasting chicken legs, and if the pieces are also turned as they are basted, this can help ensure the chicken legs cook evenly.