Inspired by two Moroccan staples, this Slow Cooker Moroccan Lemon Chicken Stew boasts bold flavors. Made with chicken thighs, preserved lemons, pitted olives, and a host of spices, this one-pot meal is perfect for busy weeknights.
Growing up in Morocco, there were a couple of things we were almost never short of; preserved lemons and olives. If you have ever taken a walk in a Moroccan market, you will see piles and piles of that stuff, and for good reason. They are used in so many Moroccan dishes. This Slow Cooker Moroccan Lemon Chicken Stew is the embodiment of what Moroccan food is all about. To this day, I have not met one person who did not love it.
What is Moroccan Lemon Chicken Stew?
It’s a recipe that is traditionally made in a Tagine (Moroccan clay pot), using preserved lemons, served with pitted olives, potatoes (sometimes), and usually using an entire chicken. Although there are several variations of it, this is essentially how it’s made.
The recipe we are making today is a little different. It’s slow cooker friendly, it fits right into your busy lifestyle, and it does not compromise on flavor at all.
The flavor profile
The fact that we are slow cooking three large onions in this stew means only one thing: sweetness. To balance that sweetness, I decided to put in some chili flakes, powdered ginger, black pepper, powdered turmeric, cumin, and paprika. The spice mix adds a lot of depth of flavor, and the addition of preserved lemons and Kalamata olives provides freshness and acidity to brighten everything up.
Here is what I love the most about it: boneless, skinless chicken thighs.
Chicken thighs are the perfect choice for a slow cooker recipe. The high-fat content in chicken thighs insures that even after six hours of cooking, the chicken will remain moist and tender.
And did I say no bones? Yes, you got it! Once this stew is ready, all you need to do is serve and enjoy with some fresh bread without worrying about anything.
Home Chef Tips:
- Where can I find preserved lemons? Amazon.com has a good selection. You can also look for them in some specialty grocery stores.
- Can you use any other cuts of chicken to make this? Yes! Just make sure that you remove the skin as it will get soggy once cooked.
- Do I have to use Kalamata Olives? No, your favorite kind of olives will do.
- Can I make this if I don’t have a slow cooker? Yes, you can. You can use your oven to slow cook it, however, you’re going to have to constantly monitor it to make sure it does not burn.
Let’s get to the recipe now!
- 2 lb boneless, skinless chicken thighs
- 3 large red onions, roughly chopped
- 2 tbsp
- 1/2 preserved lemon
- 1 cup of Kalamata olives
- Parsley to garnish
- 1 tbsp paprika
- 1 tsp powdered ginger
- 1/2 tsp powdered turmeric
- 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp chili flakes
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Turn on your slow cooker, set it on medium and add your onion, chicken, and olive oil to it.
- Using a spoon, remove all the flesh from your preserved lemon and toss it out. Cut the skin into strips and add to the slow cooker.
- Add all of your spices to the pot and stir until everything is well combined. Cover and set it to cook for a 5 hours.
- After 4 hours have passed, add your cup of Kalamata olives to the stew and cover.
- Once the 5 hours have passed, it's ready to serve.
- Garnish with some fresh parsley and serve with some fresh, spongy bread to soak up the delicious sauce.
Home Chef Tip: If your chicken thighs have skin on them, make sure you remove the skin prior to cooking.
We hope you enjoy this Slow Cooker Moroccan Lemon Chicken Stew recipe from SoFabFood Home Chef, Idriss from Broke Foodies, as much as we do. If you love this recipe, you can find more like it by visiting our Slow Cooker section. For daily recipe inspiration, subscribe to our newsletter, like us on Facebook, and follow us on Pinterest. Enjoy!