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North African Chicken and Rice

I'm always looking to try recipes from different cultures, and this one is a huge favorite. We love the spice combinations. This cooks equally well in a slow cooker or a pressure cooker. —Courtney Stultz, Weir, Kansas
  • Total Time
    Prep: 10 min. Cook: 4 hours
  • Makes
    8 servings


  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 8 boneless skinless chicken thighs (about 2 pounds)
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 cup golden raisins
  • 1/2 to 1 cup chopped pitted green olives
  • 1 medium lemon, sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth or water
  • 4 cups hot cooked brown rice


  • In a 3- or 4-qt. slow cooker, combine onion and oil. Place chicken thighs on top of onion; sprinkle with next 7 ingredients. Top with raisins, olives, lemon and garlic. Add broth. Cook, covered, on low until chicken is tender, 4-5 hours. Serve with hot cooked rice.

Test Kitchen tips
  • Heavily spiced with a mixture of interesting ingredients, the cuisine from North Africa may be a bit unfamiliar, but we know you'll fall in love with the interesting new flavor combinations.
  • If olives aren't your favorite, don't leave them out entirely, but go with 1/2 cup. They add a nice underlying flavor as well as a little saltiness to the dish.
  • Nutrition Facts
    1 serving: 386 calories, 13g fat (3g saturated fat), 76mg cholesterol, 556mg sodium, 44g carbohydrate (12g sugars, 3g fiber), 25g protein.

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    Average Rating:
    • birdiesbuddy
      Aug 8, 2020

      Going out right now to buy chicken. Interesting comments....I love different cultures and the cooking. Interesting the olives and raisins--similar to Peccadillo, a FAV that I can eat daily for a week. I can't wait to try this and then I'll review! Didn't want to put 1 star so put 5 and will re-eval.

    • Judith
      Apr 20, 2019

      My husband loved this recipe. I did make several changes, first, substituting organic bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs for the boneless/skinless thighs. Not having golden raisins, I used 1/2 cup of currents and 1/2 cup halved dried apricots. Next I added an additional clove of minced garlic and a pinch of cumin. We wanted a change from rice, so I served it over couscous. Easy and delicious. YUM!

    • Terry
      Apr 8, 2019

      Absolutely delicious! Made this in my multi-pot with the pressure cooker. Had also wondered about the odd-seeming combination of spices, but after looking at many other Moroccan and North African recipes that were very similar, decided to follow the recipe exactly. It was amazing. I might add a bit of cumin next time as I like that flavor with this type of food from this region. Even better the next day.

    • David
      Nov 13, 2018

      I added some more spices, might add a bit more raisins next time. Perhaps other people simply like different things, Tiffany.

    • Tiffany
      Feb 23, 2018

      I followed this recipe exactly, other than subbing boneless skinless chicken for thighs, and it was awful! The combination of spices didn’t work well together at all, and the raisins didn’t taste right with the olives. Of my 4 person family, no one liked it, and most of us couldn’t eat more than a few bites. I’m baffled as to how this recipe has such great reviews.

    • beach033
      Jan 22, 2018

      This went over well with my family. I might add more raisins next time. The leftovers worked very well packed as lunches for work.

    • BilliePock
      Jan 19, 2018

      This is delicious! A wonderful, unique combination of flavors and spices. I made this as it is written. I will be making it again and sharing the rec8.

    • ReneeMurby
      Jan 16, 2018

      Nice Spice Mix with an International feel. I substituted with boneless, skinless breast and extra-long grain rice. I WILL make this again and use the chicken thighs and try a Jasmine rice. I love this recipe. It's exotic, filling and so delicious!

    • lou
      Jan 1, 2018

      Easy and delish! Great to freeze for later, too.