One-pot meals are a little slice of heaven in my world, especially when they’re wildly full of flavor like this Spiced Chicken with Toasted Couscous.

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Admit it. Sometimes you don’t feel like doing dishes. Scratch that. I meant to say you never feel like doing dishes. That’s certainly the way I feel. As a result, I try to make sure the weelicious blog has many one-pot dinnertime dishes as possible — for both simplicity’s sake and to make clean up as quick as possible.

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The best part about this chicken dish (aside from the absence of pots and pans waiting to be scrubbed after the meal) is the intoxicating aroma that will be emanating from your kitchen when it’s ready. Toasted couscous, bite-sized pieces of tender chicken, plump apricots and carrots, all lightly coated with aromatic spices, come together to create one heavenly Moroccan inspired meal. Your family may even take care of cleaning the one lone pot….by licking every last drop out of it!

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How to Make One Pot Spiced Chicken with Toasted Couscous

  1. Toast the Couscous: In a 2-inch deep sauté pan over medium heat, dry toast the couscous for 3 minutes, until golden brown. Remove to a plate.
  2. Sauté: Heat the oil in the pan. Add the onions and garlic, and sauté for 5 minutes, until soft.
  3. Combine: Add the couscous back to the pan, along with all the remaining ingredients and stir to combine well.
  4. Bring to a Boil and Simmer: Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 22-25 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through.
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More One Pot/Pan Recipes:

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One Pot Spiced Chicken with Toasted Couscous

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Servings: 4
Author: Catherine McCord
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes

Ingredients  

  • 1 cup israeli couscous
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 2 carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch coins
  • 1/2 cup diced dried apricots
  • 2 cups low sodium chicken stock
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Instructions 

  • In a 2-inch deep sauté pan over medium heat, dry toast the couscous for 3 minutes, until golden brown. Remove to a plate.
  • Heat the oil in the pan. Add the onions and garlic, and sauté for 5 minutes, until soft.
  • Add the couscous back to the pan, along with all the remaining ingredients and stir to combine well.
  • Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 22-25 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through.

Notes

Substitution Tip: Substitute chicken breasts for thighs if you prefer white meat. Cut into 1-inch cubes if you use chicken breasts and only cook 10-12 minutes.
Did you make this recipe?Mention @Weelicious or tag #weelicious!

About the Author

Catherine is a mama of three. A Kentucky girl living in California. Here’s what I know: all kids can be great eaters and mealtime must be easy. I create simple, healthy recipes the whole family will love.

Comments

  1. It sounds like the heat may have been too high. You want to make sure the liquid is simmering, but not fully boiling so the couscous doesn’t cook too quickly.

  2. I just made this dish and I just have done something wrong. The flavors were great but the liquid did not fully absorb so I had to keep cooking it for almost 20 minutes and it ended up very mushy and the bottom layer stuck to the pot. Maybe it was because I used a Le Creuset Dutch oven instead of a sauté pan? Any help appreciated because I would love to make it again!

  3. I made this! I doubled the spices and used water instead of chicken broth and it came out really well! I’m making this again tonight, going to add beans and use the water I boil them in instead of broth. Super easy & delicious!

  4. I finally made this dish! I can’t find Israeli couscous where I live, so I remembered to buy some on my last trip to the US. It is easy and sooooo delicious! I followed the recipe exactly. I’m not fond of dried fruit anywhere near my food, but the apricots added the perfect sweetness. Yum!

  5. Hi, Just made this. Pretty easy but longer than expected. Took 20 minutes for the couscous to turn golden on my electric stove. Took 10 minutes to prep all the ingredients. From start to finish, it was 1 hour. Carrots a bit crunchy which I like but took my toddler long to chew. Double cumin and cinnamon, add salt.
    If you like type of dish, try Weelicious’ tajine.
    Thanks Weelicious for your awesome recipes, I love the North African/Middle Eastern influence in this dish.

  6. I made this tonight. Used Bob’s Red Mill Whole Wheat Pearl Couscous and some red and white carrots. It was delish! Surprisingly flavorful for such simple ingredients. Many thanks!

  7. […] One Pot Spiced Chicken with Toasted Couscous Recipe from Weelicious […]

  8. Hi, tried this tonight. Doubled the cumin and cut the veggies and chicken smaller and my 20 month olds like it. Has anyone ever tried this with a whole grain rather than cous cous. It would change the preparation a bit, but it would provide a whole grain rather than pasta. If you have any idea on how to do this, I’d love to hear them. Thanks!

  9. Anyone have any good ideas to sub for israeli couscous? I can’t find it anywhere in Toronto….

  10. Amazing!! All 3 kiddos gobbled it up (ages 19 mo, 3 1/2 yrs, and 5) and my MIL repeated several times how tasty the dish was. Best part … Whipped it up from start to finish while my husband bathed the kids after an afternoon in the park. Thank you for a delicious, quick, healthy meal,

  11. We made this last night and my three year old LOVED it. A super easy and tasty meal. Thank you!

  12. We love this! I cooked my chicken separately because I was prepping for another recipe and reduced the chicken broth. Next time I will try throwing in more veggies. The cinnamon and cumin work beautifully together!
    I thought the recipe directions were very clear. Love the flavor toasting the couscous gives it

  13. Any idea on a gluten free sub for the couscous, as well as how to substitute it? (Trying to figure out the toasting and adding back in method…)
    I have quinoa, kasha, millet, teff, split peas, split lentils, red lentils, basmati, jasmine, wild, japonica or brown rice…you name it! Thanks, Catherine.

  14. I used regular couscous, not israeli but it was still good. The only problem is that it was a little dry and my carrots didn’t cook. Wonder if that was the couscous being more absorbant or what? Otherwise, yummy!

  15. That was SPECTACULAR, Catherine! Thank you for all of the amazing ideas you provide to us!

  16. This looks amazing. I love the addition of the apricots. Great recipe. One pot meals are my jam!

  17. I’m about to dirty multiple pots to make tacos. I’d toss this one together – if I weren’t fresh out of couscous. (I’ve actually never bought couscous, but this recipe is going in the “to make” folder, so anything is possible.)

  18. Than you for a great recipe. This was very easy to make and quite tasty even though I didn’t have the dried apricots.

  19. This looks & sounds DELICIOUS! And for everyone confused on the directions, they’re not incomplete. You toast the dry/uncooked couscous in the first step. The in step 3 you’re adding ALL the ingredients into the pot, which includes your toasted couscous AND 2 cups of chicken stock. Simmer 10-12 minutes and voila, your one pot meal is done. : )

  20. Step One: Dry toast the couscous to get a golden brown color. Then Step Three: add the couscous pack to the pot with the remaining ingredients!

  21. Step One: Dry toast the couscous to get a golden brown color. Then Step Three: add the couscous pack to the pot with the remaining ingredients!

  22. Couscous is uncooked…. straight from the package…

    Step One: Dry toast the couscous to get a golden brown color. Then Step Three: add the couscous pack to the pot with the remaining ingredients!

  23. Agreed on incomplete directions/instructions.
    Two key pieces of info needed:
    Is 1 cup israeli couscous cooked or uncooked to do dry toasting?

    If uncooked, how long for couscous to plump up and cook through compared to chicken?

  24. Yes, in Step Three you put the couscous back into the pan with the remaining ingredients!

  25. Instructions seem incomplete. Do you put toasted couscous back in pan and cook with rest of ingredients?

  26. Looks delicious and LOVE the one-pottedness. Quick question, do you add the couscous back in with the other ingredients to simmer?

  27. Put the couscous back into the pan to simmer with all the remaining ingredients in Step Three!

  28. I think we all have the same question here. If you aren’t green to cooking like myself, the most rational guess would be toast the dry couscous then add into the pot with the ingredients and broth and it will cook up in the end. I might hold off adding the couscous a 5 minutes until after the chicken has cooked some of the way.
    Makes the most sense

  29. I feel like I’m being dense here, but just to clarify, you don’t cook the couscous beyond toasting it for 3 minutes in the beginning? Or do you put it back in the pot when you simmer everything for 10-12 minutes?

  30. I’m not going to lie, you had me at “one pot.” This looks like a winner to me.

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