Ready in 30 minutes, this one-pan Moroccan-inspired chicken couscous recipe is quick and easy to make, and full of flavor. Serve it with a side of steamed vegetables for a healthy and well-balanced weeknight dinner.
I don’t know about you, but I love a one-pan dish! Not only does it allow for fewer dishes but cooking the ingredients in the same pan elevates the flavors of any dish.
Prefer to watch the video?
In this particular recipe, by cooking the couscous in the same pan used to cook the chicken, the couscous absorbs the juices and spices from the chicken, which seasons and moistens the couscous, without adding extra oil or fat, and enhances the Moroccan-inspired flavors of the recipe. Not to mention, it adds some color too!
Ingredients: What You’ll Need
You’ll need the following ingredients to make this Moroccan-inspired recipe:
- Chicken: The recipe calls for chicken breasts as the, however, you can use boneless chicken thighs if you like.
- Couscous: The use of Moroccan couscous made with semolina flour enhances the North Africa-inspired flavors of this dish. If you prefer to use Israeli couscous or pearl couscous, you’ll need to extend the oven cooking time as it takes longer to cook.
- Onion and Garlic: To add some flavor to the couscous. While the recipe calls for a shallot you can use a small onion instead.
- Spices: This recipe uses a lot of spices to add a lot of flavor to the chicken and the couscous. You’ll need paprika, cumin, coriander, ginger, turmeric, and cinnamon.
- Chicken Broth: To cook and flavor the couscous.
- Olive Oil: To cook the chicken and add moisture to the couscous.
- Fresh Herbs: A bit of fresh mint and fresh parsley or cilantro to finish the dish and balance out the spices.
- Lemon: A squeeze of fresh lemon juice to finish and balance the flavors.
To Make it Gluten-Free: Swap the couscous for quinoa.
To Make it Dairy-Free: No adaptations are needed, this recipe is dairy-free.
How to Make Chicken Couscous
While this recipe requires multiple ingredients and may appear a little fancy or difficult to make, I can assure you it’s not! In a few simple steps, you can easily create a flavor-packed 30-minute meal with chicken and couscous. Here’s what you’ll do:
- Season the chicken. Begin by coating the chicken in the Moroccan-inspired spice mixture.
- Sear the chicken. Add the chicken breasts to a skillet and sear them on both sides.
- Spice the couscous. Add the couscous to the skillet with the remaining spices and broth.
- Add the chicken to the couscous. Return the chicken to the pan with the couscous.
- Cook the skillet. Place the skillet in the oven and bake until the couscous is fluffy, and the chicken is cooked through.
- Sprinkle with fresh herbs. Once the chicken and couscous are cooked, sprinkle the skillet with mint and cilantro.
Once cooked, the skillet can be served immediately on its own, with a side of vegetables, or a simple green salad.
Red’s Nutrition Tip
While I designed this recipe as a one-pan recipe for easy weeknight meals, it works really well as a meal prep option too! Once cooked, divide the couscous and chicken evenly across containers, add veggies of your choice (I like to add broccolini), and store it in the fridge and enjoy it for healthy lunches or dinners for days to come.
While some people are confused as to whether couscous is healthy or not, couscous is in fact a healthy form of pasta made from semolina flour and provides a source of complex carbohydrates to any well-balanced meal. Much like all pasta, couscous is healthy and can be included in a healthy diet.
While rice is a whole grain and couscous is a form of pasta made from flour, both rice and couscous are sources of carbohydrates and fiber and can be included in a healthy diet. Once is not healthier than the other, they are simply different.
Yes. When consumed within a calorie deficit, couscous is a relatively inexpensive, filling, and healthy food that can help to support a goal of weight loss.
What to Serve with Chicken and Couscous
This chicken couscous recipe is filled with protein, complex carbohydrates, and healthy fats, so pairing it with some vegetables can help to add some fiber and micronutrients. I would recommend steamed or roasted:
- Green Peas
Although I didn’t add any, a sprinkle of feta cheese on top would add additional flavor, a creamy texture, a cool contrast to the spices, and add some healthy fats and a bit more protein at the same time.
Storage + Reheating
To Store: Allow the chicken and couscous to cool completely, then transfer to airtight containers, and store in the fridge for up to 4 days.
To Freeze: Once cooled, leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 3 months.
To Reheat: Place the chicken and couscous in an oven-proof dish and warm in the oven at 350°F for 10-15 minutes. Leftovers can also be reheated in a microwave-safe dish in the microwave for 2-3 minutes. Allow leftovers to thaw completely before reheating.
More Chicken and Couscous Recipes:Print
Chicken Couscous Skillet
Ready in 30 minutes, this Moroccan-inspired chicken couscous recipe is a hearty and healthy one-pan meal that is perfect for a weeknight dinner.
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 25 minutes
- Total Time: 30 minutes
- Yield: 4 servings 1x
- Category: Dinner
- Method: Stovetop
- Cuisine: Moroccan
- 1 pound chicken breasts (3–4 chicken breasts)
- 2 1/2 teaspoons paprika
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 black pepper
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 shallot or small onion, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 cups couscous, dry
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups chicken broth
- Mint, chopped, to serve
- Parsley, chopped, to serve
- Preheat the oven to 375°F.
- Place the chicken breasts on a cutting board. Lay a large piece of plastic wrap on top of the cutting board, covering the chicken, and pound the top of each chicken breast with a meat mallet, rolling pin, or small skillet until they are an even thickness across. (While this step is optional, it helps to ensure the chicken cooks more evenly.)
- In a small bowl, add the paprika, cumin, coriander, ginger, salt, and pepper, salt, and stir to combine. Once combined, transfer the spice mixture to a plate and then transfer chicken breasts onto the plate, one at a time, turning them in the spice mixture until they are well coated, and then return them to the cutting board.
- In a large skillet on medium-high heat, warm the olive oil. Once the oil is hot, add the chicken breasts and cook for 3-4 minutes per side until golden brown. Once cooked on both sides, remove from the pan and set aside. (Note: The chicken breasts will not be fully cooked, you will finish them in the oven.)
- In the same pan, turn down the temperature to low-medium heat, add onion and garlic (and a bit more olive oil if needed), and cook for 2-3 minutes until tender.
- Add turmeric and cinnamon, stir to coat the onion and garlic mixture, and cook for 15-30 seconds until fragrant. Add couscous and stir to coat with the onion, garlic, and spice mixture.
- Pour chicken broth into the pan, stirring to ensure it’s well mixed with couscous, then return chicken breasts to the pan, laying them into the couscous and broth mixture.
- Cover the pan with a lid and then transfer it to the oven to cook for 15 minutes, until the couscous is cooked, and the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165°F.
- Once cooked, remove the pan from the oven, remove the lid, and sprinkle with fresh mint and parsley before serving.
- Any leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days or in the freezer for 3 months.
- Serving Size: 1 serving
- Calories: 459 calories
- Sugar: 1 gram
- Fat: 11 grams
- Carbohydrates: 54 grams
- Fiber: 4 grams
- Protein: 35 grams
Leave a Review