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Tagine Chicken with Apricots, Dates and Chickpeas

Tagine Chicken with Apricots, Dates and Chickpeas

A Moroccan feast! Perfectly balanced with aromatic spices.
“Tagine” recipes are slow-cooked savory stews rich with delicious Mediterranean spices such as, saffron, cumin, cloves and cinnamon.

You’ll love the Mediterranean flavors in this one pot good-for-you stew!

A rich broth with chopped tomatoes, chicken stock, carrots and chunks of dried dates & apricots with aromatic global spices ~ thus is a stew to make again and again! Top with crunchy sliced almonds and parsley.

Tagine Chicken with Apricots, Dates and Chickpeas


2.5 pounds boneless and skinless chicken thighs, trimmed of excess fat (about 8 large thighs)

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

half lemon, juiced

½ teaspoon smoked paprika

8 grates freshly cracked black pepper

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

2 cups onion, peeled, ¾” chunks

4 medium colored carrots, peeled, ½” slice

½ teaspoon ground cumin

1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon

¾ teaspoon saffron threads, crumbled with your fingertips and soaked in 1 T. warm water for 10 minutes

1 ½ teaspoons harissa sauce*, or red chili paste (or crushed red chiles to taste)

¼ teaspoon ground cloves

1 tablespoon fresh garlic, peeled and minced

1 tablespoon tomato paste

1 cup finely cut tomatoes in juice

2 cups chicken stock, can use vegetable stock*, preferably homemade

4 large dates, pitted, cut into thin strips

12 dried apricots cut in half vertically

1 cup chickpeas, cooked, drained

¼ cup fresh parsley, cleaned dried, coarsely chopped

¼ cup sliced natural almonds, toasted



1. Marinate Chicken ahead of time for the best flavor!
Add chicken and the next 4 ingredients in a large bowl; olive oil, half of a lemon juiced, smoked paprika and pepper. Mix well, cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours or overnight.


2. In a large cast iron skillet (can also use a Dutch oven), add 2 T. olive oil – raise heat to medium-high. Add 4 chicken thighs and cook until golden brown around the edges, turn over and repeat: about 2- 3 minutes each side. Remove to a plate.


Repeat with remaining chicken. Remove to the plate.


3. Turn the heat down to medium-low. Add the onions and sauté, stirring for 5 minutes until softened but not browned.
Add carrots and all seasonings; cumin, cinnamon, soaked saffron, harissa sauce*, cloves and garlic. Stir well to incorporate and cook for 1 minute (so the flavors of the spices release.)


4. Add tomato paste, tomatoes in juice and chicken stock. Bring to a boil, stirring, then reduce to a low simmer.
Add the dates, apricots and chickpeas, stir up and bring to a simmer.


5. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a 9” x 13” baking pan (like Le Creusuet) add the chicken and pour over the sauce from the skillet.
Cover tightly with foil (or a cover of a dutch oven) and bake for 45 – 50 minutes until chicken is very tender.


To Serve: I like to slice the chicken; surrounded by the sauce.
Serve with couscous, rice… or even quinoa or potatoes. Garnish with plenty of chopped parsley and almonds. Enjoy!


HINT: the Tagine’s sauce thickens as it stands; add more broth if necessary.

* A good quick vegetable stock I like: Better Than Bouillon Organic Seasoned Vegetable Base.

Want to make a vegetarian or vegan tagine? Substitute a few cups of vegetables for the chicken in the recipe. This recipe is naturally gluten free.


See BLOG for many more photos and information.

This recipe may not be reproduced without the consent of its author, Karen Sheer.

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