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4.43 from 7 votes

Moroccan Chicken Stew

Moroccan Chicken Stew - Ultra tender chicken thighs, fragrant spices and apricots flavor this easy and warming weeknight stew! This easy Morrocan stew is ready in under an hour but tastes like it's been simmered all day!
Prep Time25 mins
Cook Time50 mins
Total Time1 hr 15 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Middle Eastern
Servings: 4
Calories: 550kcal


  • 2 lbs Boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 pinch saffron threads
  • 3 cloves garlic pressed
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon ground white pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon allspice
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 3 Tbsp. sugar divided
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 red onion thinly sliced
  • 5 sprigs cilantro
  • 5 sprigs parsley
  • 1 cup dried apricots
  • ½ cup orange juice fresh
  • 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  • IF using the saffron, add the saffron to a small bowl and add 2 Tablespoons of hot water. Set aside.
  • In a small bowl combine all the ground spices, pressed garlic, salt, and 1 ½ teaspoons sugar.
  • Add the saffron and water mixture to the spices. If not using the saffron, add 2 Tablespoons of hot water to the spice mixture and stir to combine.
  • Spread the spice paste all over the chicken thighs. Let marinate at room temperature while you prep the onions.
  • In a large pot with a lid, add the olive oil, ¼ cup of water and the onions. Cook over medium-low heat until the onions are soft and just beginning to color, about 20 minutes.
  • Add the chicken and cook for 3 minutes on each side. Add ¼ cup water and the cilantro and parsley.
  • Place the lid on the pot and adjust the heat to medium-low so that the stew is at a bare simmer. Cook for 30 minutes or until the chicken is cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees.
  • While the chicken is cooking, add the apricots, orange juice, cinnamon stick, butter and sugar to a small saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil and then reduce to a simmer.
  • Simmer for 10 - 15 minutes until the liquid is reduced by approximately ⅓ and has become slightly syrupy.
  • Remove the cinnamon stick and add the apricots and the liquid to the chicken.
  • Stir to combine.
  • Taste and adjust the seasonings as needed.
  • If the chicken has not reached an internal temperature of 165 degrees, continue to cook the chicken for another 5 minutes. Re-check the temperature and continue cooking until the chicken reaches 165 degrees.
  • Remove the cilantro and parsley and serve.


  • I used boneless, skinless chicken thighs in this recipe but you could use chicken breasts and/or drumsticks. 
  • If using skin on chicken, you'll want to skim the surface of the stew to remove thee excess fat.
  • TIP: Refrigerate the stew overnight. The fat will rise to the top and solidify, making it really easy to remove.
  • You can make this chicken stew up to a day in advance or freeze it for longer storage. 
  • To reheat the stew if made a day in advance - re warm on the stovetop, covered until the chicken is heated through.
  • FREEZING: This recipe freezes very well. Let the stew cool completely and then transfer to a freezer safe container.
  • Allow to thaw in the refrigerator overnight and then re heat, covered in a 350 degree oven.
  • SERVING SUGGESTIONS: This stew is ideal to serve over plain couscous to sop up all that lovely sauce! A simple mixed green salad completes the meal! 


Calories: 550kcal | Carbohydrates: 41g | Protein: 46g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 231mg | Sodium: 792mg | Potassium: 1072mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 32g | Vitamin A: 1765IU | Vitamin C: 21mg | Calcium: 66mg | Iron: 3mg