Persian Pomegranate Chicken (Fesenjan)

Make your own pomegranate molasses by simmering 1 cup of pomegranate juice until it reduces to 5 Tbsp of syrup.

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 2 hours
  • Yield: Serves 6-8


  • 1 to 2 large yellow onions, chopped, (3 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 5 tablespoons pomegranate molasses
  • 1/2 pound walnut halves (about 2 cups)
  • 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs and/or breasts, trimmed of excess fat, cut into medium size pieces, patted dry and salted
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons of sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Salt
  • 1/2 cup fresh pomegranate arils for garnish (optional)


1 Toast and grind the walnuts: You can toast the walnuts in one of two ways. You can either spread them out in a single layer in a large skillet, and toast them on medium high heat, stirring frequently until lightly toasted, OR you can spread them out in a single layer in a baking rimmed baking sheet, and toast at 350°F in the oven for 8 to 10 minutes.


In either case, once toasted, remove from heat and allow to cool. Once cool enough to handle, pulse in a food processor or blender until finely ground.

2 Brown the chicken pieces on all sides: In a large pan, heat 1 tablespoon of butter and 2 tablespoon of olive oil over medium-high heat.

When the butter has melted, pat the chicken pieces dry again and place the chicken pieces in the pan, working in batches if necessary to not crowd the pan, and cook until golden brown on all sides. Sprinkle the chicken with salt while they are cooking.


3 Sauté the onions: Use a slotted spoon or tongs to remove the chicken from the pan, set aside. Add a tablespoon of butter and a tablespoon of oil to the pan. Lower the heat to medium low. Add chopped onions to the pan and sauté until translucent, stirring on occasion to release the browned bits from the bottom of the pan.


4 Add chicken and stock: Return the chicken pieces to the pan with the onions. Pour 2 cups of chicken stock over the chicken and onions. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, cover and simmer gently for 30 minutes.


5 Add ground walnuts, pomegranate molasses, sugar, spices, cover and cook: Stir in the ground walnuts, pomegranate molasses, sugar, and spices. Cover and cook on very low heat for 1 hour, stirring every 20 minutes or so to prevent the walnuts from sticking to the bottom of the pan.

fesenjan-chicken-stew-method-5 fesenjan-chicken-stew-method-6

Remove from heat and adjust sugar/salt to taste. At this point the chicken should be fall apart tender.

Garnish with pomegranate seeds. Serve over parsi pulao or other favorite rice.

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  • somaye

    I will definitely try your recipe. I think most Iranians make it sweet and sour, use a tasteless oil, use less onions and fry the onions until they are golden in color( but yours is more healthy), and as far as I know they don’t roast the walnuts. But I will roast them next time to see the difference.

  • Kathryn

    Fesenjan is a dish that my mom would make since I was a child. To me this dish reminds me of my childhood. My mother passed away and unfortunately I never learned how she mad it specifically. This is a great recipe but it is a tad sweet. I added more Pomegranate Molasses so that it had more of a tarte flavor to it. Some Persian restaurants make it sweet and some make it tarte so it just depends on your taste buds.


  • Roger

    I am certainly no expert on Persian cuisine, but I made this yesterday and it was superb. Because of the eternal conflict within my family between white meat and dark meat lovers I sectioned a whole chicken into 8 pieces for the recipe and proceeded as printed. At the end of the cooking time the chicken was just about falling off the bone (a good thing) but the sauce wasn’t quite as thick as I thought it should be so I removed the chicken to a plate and reduced the sauce for about 7-8 minutes then returned the chicken to warm through. It was perfect, deep brown colour and all. Will be making this again, often.

  • Mahrue

    This tasted good, but it didn’t compare to the traditional fesenjoon I had growing up in a Persian household. As some of the other reviewers said, my stew stayed a light brown/beige color instead of turning dark brown (even after following the recipe exactly and cooking it down for an hour).


    • Carrie Havranek

      Hi, Mahrue! It’s possible that the dish needed to cook down a little more. I’m glad you tried it, and I can understand how certain things can never compare to what you ate growing up! But thanks for your comment

  • Asma Khan

    It was delicious, easy, and a hit! Thank you for sharing this recipe on an old favorite of mine!


  • Diana

    Easy and delicious.


  • Chef joe

    This dish came out so good was a little tart so I added lil more sugar. My clients loved it. Accompanied it with turmeric saffron rice,lentil spinach soup,persian salad, roasted eggplant spread with persian bread they loved it.


  • RRW

    Fantastic & yummy! Rather easy to make too!


  • Andrew

    I have attempted a fesenjan recipe 3X prior to this one. They were not close to what I have eaten and cherished at restaurants…always a disappointment. Made this last night and it was like magic! This is what I’ve been served at the local middle-eastern restaurants (in San Diego, CA area). Super easy/simple recipe too. Fantastic and will be made again and again. Will try cutting the sugar in half next time, just for health reasons.

    I did some reading on the pomegranate concoctions prior to cooking this recipe. The other recipes called for pomegranate “syrup” or pomegranate “concentrate”. This recipe uses “molasses” and I think that may be the secret ingredient since it has the tangy/tart taste. This recipe calms that taste some with sugar (but not too much). It’s that tangy’ness that has been missing. It makes the magic. Do try this. I have read this is a “festive” dish used for special events such as weddings.


    • Carrie Havranek

      Pomegranate molasses is one of my most favorite “secret” ingredients in cooking, Middle Eastern/Mediterranean or not! Glad you enjoyed this, Andrew! Thanks for the comment.

    • Roger Price

      The special dish for weddings is called Javaher Polow and I’m busy preparing the ingredients as I write as I have a dinner party tomorrow night. It is literally Jewelled Rice where the colors of the jewels are Pistachio Green, Sultana Yellow, Cranberry Red, Slivered Almonds White and of course fresh pomegranate seeds sprinkled over the top to provide the richness. I also do sugar caramelized zested strips of grapefruit, lemon, orange and lime so there are long threads of crisp sugary/tart goodies to give the whole dish a zing. I have just finished the chicken and can tell you that the pomegranate molasses is the secret. You can order it online through Amazon.

  • Jessica

    Made this tonight with vegan chicken/vegan chicken broth and it was incredible. The key is definitely cooking for a long time. Used Ichiza chicken (an amazing vegan restaurant in Portland, OR that sells their faux meats) as well as vegan smoked drumsticks on sugarcane bones. I used them the same way you said to use traditional chicken (although I was worried they would get too soft) and it was perfect. Based on some other recipes I saw, I cooked much longer (somewhere between 2-3 hours) and it was very rich and flavorful. Loved it!!


  • Michael

    I should also add, the comment about the finished product being light brown; my guess is, you didn’t let it cook down long enough. Every time I make this, I think I’ve done something wrong, because it takes a while for all of the ingredients to blend together, thicken, and look and taste right. Don’t rush it!


  • Michael

    I like to add fresh garlic to the onions while they’re sauteing. I also use more molasses than the recipe calls for. I use brown sugar, but less than the recipe calls for, and replace it with chopped dried apricots, golden raisins, and tart dried cherries. Absolutely delicious!

    • Robin

      I loved the idea of dried fruits in this–I took your suggestion and it was amazing! Really elevated the flavours. Thank you so much!

  • Casie

    I made this dish for some Persian friends and they were so happy and surprised with the flavor that they asked me for the recipe. They said it was exactly like the Fesenjan they used to eat back in Iran …


  • dizzy

    Recipe as is was ok but needed quite a bit more seasoning, mine was a very light tan color. I added probably another 1/2 tsp cinnamon, another tsp turmeric, 1/2 tsp allspice, 1/4 tsp extra pepper, plus used about 1.5 cups pomegranate arils (vs 1/2 cup) and another tbsp or so of pom molasses. Still didn’t taste as I remembered it as restaurants but with this it came out really nice.


  • Amy

    What a fantastic dish! The flavors awaken taste buds with subtle sweet and sour notes. The chicken becomes succulent and juicy when slow-cooked in the tangy stew. Our guests were all delighted.


  • Kristen

    Whoa! This dish is amazing! It will definitely go into my regular rotation. Delicious!!


  • Ada

    Want to make this; some recipes call for butternut squash. Is that better than one without? Also can you make it the day before serving it?

    • Emma Christensen

      Hi, Ada! I think it really comes down to whether you like butternut squash or not! I think squash would be a great addition to this recipe, but it’s also fantastic without. And yes, I think this dish would do quite well made a day ahead and then reheated. Enjoy!

  • Joe

    This was an awesome dish. I cooked it for my woman and she couldn’t stop eating it. This is going to be in my favourite list of recipes!

    Joe – Belgium

  • Heather

    Can I use red onion ?

  • Shauna

    This is crazy good. Its sweet, then its sour, then nutty and meaty. For me these were really new flavor combos and I loved it! I used chicken breast and it was not dry, just take care to simmer not boil it. I omitted 2 tsp of sugar because I was a worried about it being too sweet which was fine for us. Thank you for this recipe I will definitely make it again.


  • Marina

    OOOPS! I posted that the color was can remove that! As it cooked- it defintely gained color! Not as dark as the picture- but looks very appealing. And it tastes AMAZING!! Cooked it for a friends- Cannot wait to cook it for me!

  • Marina

    My dish is finishing the last phase of cooking right now. It does not look appealing like in the photo.Mine is very beige. I followed the directions exactly…I know that it will taste great- can’t beat the ingredients- but concerned on how it looks as I am cooking it for a friend who lost her son. Any suggestions?

    • Christy

      If it is beige, it needs more pomegranate paste. Should be on the darker side. Honestly, I love the taste and make it frequently, but it’s just not the best looking dish around.

  • victoria

    Delicious. Toasted walnuts in a toastRoven and used chicken breast. Dark meat would probably stay more moist. Don’t omit the pomegranate arils (seeds) or molasses. Everyone loved it!


  • Keely

    Amazing! Taste just like the one at my favorite Persian restaurant


  • Mina

    I have made this quite a few times and it’s a wonderful recipe with unusual flavours. I have it with bulgur wheat and with some parsley on top. I have experimented with blueberry molasses and plum molasses, but I think the pomegranate is the best for this dish. I also have never felt the need to add any sugar to the molasses as it’s sweet enough, but lemon gives it a nice zing.


  • Dr Mel

    Just tried this tonight – it’s a real winner. We will be adding this to our regular recipes. We combined it with a bulgar wheat salad and sprinkled chopped mint on top, and served with yoghurt too. Instead of sugar, just put in a tb of date syrup which worked well.
    Thank you!


  • Hayley

    My sauce is watery. Will it thicken during the cooking process?

    • Emma Christensen

      Hi, Hayley! Emma here, managing editor for Simply Recipes. Yes, your sauce should thicken during cooking. Check on it about 15 minutes before the end, and if the sauce still seems a little too thin for your liking, remove the cover and let it simmer uncovered to allow the excess liquid to evaporate.

    • Christy Mohammadi

      You can also add another 1/4 cup of ground walnuts if too watery.

  • Betty

    Very good. Would not use chicken breast, worry it would dry out, while thighs stayed moist. I used a non stick pan so could reduce butter and oil. Also, will use less stock next time for thicker sauce.


  • Sharon M

    I’ve already reviewed this recipe because its become a real favourite of mine. I’ve lost count of how many times Ive made it. There are lots of versions of this on the internet but this one works perfectly for me


  • Celeste

    I am making this dish for the second time. We loved it the first time and had to have it again. I didn’t have access to fresh pomegranates, so I drizzled some of the pomegranate molasses over the stew when serving. It certainly gave the dish a delicious brightness!

  • Sherry R

    Can you make this in a slow cooker after you brown and sautéed the onions. If so how long should it be cooked on low heat for.

    • Elise Bauer

      Hi Sherry, great question! I haven’t tried making it in the slow cooker so don’t know what to tell you. If anyone else reading this has, please chime in.

    • Roma

      You can absolutely cook it in a slow cooker. Just transfer it in the slow cooker after chicken is browned and onions fried. I then added boiling stock, covered and waited until it started to simmer. Added spices, walnuts and molasses after about 20min and left it on a low for about 2h. Kept it on warm until guests arrived!

  • Renee Rothschild

    Thank you for the many recipes I have found on your site, along with your charming presentation. Usually they are right on, but cooking boneless chicken parts an additional 1 1/2 hours after browning was too much. Next time, I will brown them first and remove; then return them later in the cooking process. Interesting taste combinations, and I had no trouble finding the pomegranate molasses.

  • Lia

    I’ve been trying to make this dish for over a month now, but all of my usual grocery stores in New York City have been out of pomegranates and say they don’t know when they will get more in. Can you guys get them out there in California? I assume there is a shortage of some sort, but I’ve tried googling the pomegranate crops this year and haven’t found anything.

    • Elise Bauer

      Hi Lisa, it can be hard to find pomegranates outside of October through December, but you don’t really need the arils for this recipe. You should easily be able to find pomegranate molasses, or pomegranate juice with which to make pomegranate molasses all year round.

      • Lia

        Thanks, Elise! I didn’t realize they were more of a fall fruit. Sadly my local stores don’t seem to have pure pomegranate juice either. I picked up a POM cherry pomegranate blend and will attempt next weekend.

    • Susan Ryan

      Trader Joe’s usually sells the pomegranate seeds in the produce section! It would save a lot of time, too!

  • Rekha

    i tried that in Germany in Skyline foodcourt at an Iranian resto . I have never tasted something like that before. It was awesome! thanks for the recipe.I’ll try it at home now.

  • Rose

    My husband and I decided this was probably the best thing we’ve ever tasted. I made it in the pressure cooker, as another commenter suggested.

  • Elle

    I’m Iranian and this is one of my favorite dishes to make. As another person commented though, the original recipe does not call for Cinnamon. Also, this dish is best cooked for a long time ( I cook for 4-5 hours) on very low heat and then allowed to sit (settle) for a couple of hours. (you can re-heat again on low before serving) The slow cooking allows for the walnut oil to be extracted into the dish and makes for a much more substantial consistency. And thank you for posting this :)

    • Mark Baxter

      I’m making it for the 2nd time and really liked it, but I’m going to take your advice and cook it on low for 4 hours and try and taste the difference. Thanks!

  • Owen Tashlin

    This is the second time I have made this recipe and it has been a big hit both times. The first time it came out a little too sweet between the pomegranate molasses and the sugar. So this time I kept the same amount of sugar, but doubled the other spices. It was PERFECT! If you have a household that is more a fan of savory than sweet, then I would recommend that tweak highly.

  • Alan in Berkeley

    We made 1½ times the recipe for 6 people and they ate it all! It was so good. Persian rice and roasted vegetables accompanied. Reducing the pomegranate juice is a simple task, but it got away from us and burnt; had to start over. Adding sliced beets and using a pressure cooker the next time, which will be soon.

  • Sara

    I am Iranian and my mom would sometimes make it with meat balls, instead of pomegranate molasses, I once used pomegranate juice and no water, I also dont toast the walnats. I should try the toasted version now. This website is awesome, I always come here for Brazilian cheese bread :)

  • [email protected]

    Could I use lamb for this recipe?

  • Frank Galgano

    Everyone should make this dish! It is in my top 5 dishes to make at home. Our friends ask for it by name…well, the name we’ve lovingly given it: Special Chicken. You won’t be disappointed!

    • Elise Bauer

      Thanks for your glowing review Frank! It really is a special dish.

  • Robyn Stone | Add a Pinch

    I’d love to try this, Elise. It looks so savory, with a nutty delicious, slight sweetness. Thanks so much for sharing it – it’s beautiful and looks absolutely amazing! xo

  • Victoria

    This looks great! Any ideas of what to serve with this for a casual dinner party?

    • Bethy

      I would like to know the answer to this too. What kind of veggie should I pair with this and would be true to the persian taste

      • Lia

        Me three! I can’t picture how this is going to taste so I’m having a hard time choosing a veggie. Would love some recommendations!

        • Bethy

          Me 4! Or still me too…
          I’m finally getting around to making this and want to know what to serve with it!

    • Holly Robertson

      I would serve halved eggplant, roasted soft, with a a lemon tahini dressing topped with toasted walnuts

  • Tim

    Elise, pomegranate seeds are missing from the ingredient list.

  • André Jensen

    Truly an amazing recipe. The whole family loved it.
    Best regards from Sweden.

  • Rachel Goldstein

    I’ve made this for company a lot. Everyone always asks for the recipe. It’s popular with kids and adults alike. Absolutely unique and delicious traditional Persian dish. The pomegranate seeds on top really add some pop and make it look a lot prettier. I also sprinkle some chopped parsley or cilantro on top for garnish.

  • Elisa

    In answer to those wondering if you could use a pressure cooker for this – I just did and it came out great. I’ve made it before but always felt tied to the kitchen. I browned the chicken in my instant pot while the walnuts were toasting, let the nuts cool while I sauteed the onions, added the stock and put on high pressure for 10 minutes, while I ground the walnuts and assembled everything else, then did a quick release and added the nuts, sugar and spices, and put back on high pressure for 20 minutes. Perfect.


  • Marry

    Loved this also. This recipe is very similar to the fesenjan in the cookbook by Louisa Shafia called “the new persian kitchen”. I used your recipe and added shredded beets during the last 15 min. of cooking like Louisa does. So good!

  • Nancy

    Made this delicious chicken dish for dinner tonight. Used the comments from several reviewers and ground the toasted walnuts. I used less stock to make it more stew-like. We absolutely love pomegranate molasses and the addition of this ingredient really makes the dish. Nancy : )

  • Vanessa

    I find it difficult to get the temperature low enough for slow cooked stews on the top of my gas stove. I wonder if once it is all assembled I could slow cook it in the oven. If so, what temperature would you recommend and for how long?

  • Clare

    Made this completely from scratch (picked the pomegranates, made juice, turned that into the molasses) and followed the recipe exactly. We loved it. Perfect way to start the Fall!

  • Sharon Richmond

    Made this a last night for our Passover Seder – used ground almonds instead of walnuts, and it was Wow! Thanks, Elise, for another winner.

    • Elise Bauer

      Hi Sharon, great to know the recipe works with almonds too. Thanks!

    • Steve

      Sharon – Thanks for letting us know it works with almonds, I’ve been meaning to try that.

      Years ago, I used to order this dish at a middle eastern place in Vegas when I lived there. But I never got around to making it at home, because my wife is very allergic to walnuts.

      • Sharon Richmond

        that’s why I tried it, Steve — a good friend of ours is severely allergic. Making it again for tonight. Can’t wait! (PS I also have added dried sour cherries at the stage of onions and chicken simmering, which adds a piquant twist.

  • Jonathan

    I want to make this in a slow cooker. I don’t suppose you could tell me what I should alter in the recipe to adapt it? Thank you!


  • Kowleen

    Made this tonight as I had made some pomegranate molasses earlier in the week. I did omit the walnuts (didn’t have any) and I added some bulgur to the stew, to make it a one pot meal. I will definitely make this again and make sure I have walnuts.

  • Theresa

    This dish is excellent, just made it today and had some company over. They wanted all of the leftovers to take home. I love the pomegranate molasses. I think it is best to make that the day before and chill. Next time I might add small meatballs versus the chicken pieces. Please post more recipes with utilizing the pomegranate molasses. What a nice change.

  • Bahareh

    I love this dish! Since going vegan I decided to switch a few ingredients and the dish came out just as good. So for all you VEGANS…. Substitute sugar for brown rice syrup and instead of chicken I used precooked seitan pieces. I also uses pomegranate concentrate instead of molasses and put 10 tbsp. and instead of chicken stock I used vegetable stock. It was a hit! My husband loved it even though he’s not vegan!

  • Romy B.

    I have a pot of this on the stove right now; should be ready in about half an hour. About the third time I’ve made it, and thanks for the recipe! Since we like our food spicy, I added some hot red pepper, cumin and ginger to the spice mix. Also added a diced carrot, which works well.

    Might indeed be interesting to try different nuts in a similar recipe — I recently bought a couple pounds of black walnuts, but didn’t quite have the nerve to try them in this context; for me, black walnuts seem to work best in dessert settings, while regular walnuts are good in either sweet or savory concoctions.

  • Lucy Selvaggio-Diaz

    I made this last evening and really enjoyed the complexity of flavors in this recipe. I appreciated the nuance of the nutty walnuts and sweetness from the pomegranate molasses (which I also found easy to make, btw). Thanks for the recipe.

  • Ida

    I made this last night, and this recipe is a keeper! Thanks for sharing this. It was super easy to make the pomegranate molasses too. A big hit with my 2 and a half year old too.

    I had hope this would be enough for 2 dinners for 2 adults and one toddler, but it was so good, we all ate a lot! I just have enough left for lunch now.

  • MaryAlecia

    Used pecans in place of walnuts; it was delicious!

  • nancy henderson

    Made this last night to share with friends and the flavours were amazing! so totally different than what we’ve been eating lately – a really pleasant change. Was worried a bit about the texture with ground walnuts, but it was so good! Lots of compliments. made the pulao rice too – so many wonderful scents and aromas. Thanks for two more keeper recipes Elise.

  • spoons

    This is my go to recipe for the first time I bring a date home. It never fails to impress.

  • James Estrada-Scaminaci

    I made the recipe last night. Very delicious and easy to do. It rivals a dish I love at a local restaurant.

  • FolSac

    Fesanjan is a great recipe and was originally made with duck not chicken as I believe “duck” is in the name of this dish. If you really liked this dish and would like to try more Persian recipes, I found a great website that I like called Turmeric and Saffron.

  • dave farmer

    Wow! Sounds like this will blow the “ho-hum, let’s eat something” clear out of the water! I’m way down south in Carolina, so the toasting of the walnuts might involve raising a glass, and they might get toasted a couple of times. Look forward to trying this for the weekend. I don’t know if I can avoid dropping a sweet bell pepper in the pot, I grew probably 200 Lbs. of them this year. Love this website, Elise, thanks!

  • RD

    I made this a couple of weeks ago and my wife and I loved it. Served it over short-grain brown rice. I passed it by a friend of mine who immigrated to the US from Iran when she was seven. She in turn passed it by her mother who proclaimed the recipe to be “authentic”.

    I stored the left-over pomegranate molasses in our refrigerator so I could make this dish again when our kids are home for Thanksgiving. How long will the “molasses” keep in the fridge?

    • Elise Bauer

      I think I’ve had mine for over a year. Still good. It’s syrup. If it gets moldy, then you have to throw it out. Otherwise, it’s fine. The sugar and acid help preserve it.

  • Nick


    This is hands-down one of the top five dishes I’ve ever made – two crazy thumbs up. I’m telling everyone I know about this dish. Made it exact from your recipe (including the molasses using POM juice) and it was beautiful. (I did substitute allspice for nutmeg – just didn’t have any on hand.) Thank you for your wonderful recipes. (Note – for any skeptics – this may not be the most esthetically pleasing dishes – but a magical combination of flavour.)




  • Naz

    So glad to find this here Elise. I’m persian and I rarely find non iranian bloggers post persian dishes. Just a note, this dish doesn’t have cinnamon in it if you want to make authentic fesenjaan.
    To see another variation of this dish (with herbs), read my blog :

  • Juno

    I’m not supposed to eat chicken – what other meats do you think would pair well with these flavors. Lamb might be too gamy – pork?

    I think duck would be fabulous with this. ~Elise

    • Mohammad

      Hi Juno,
      You may use small meat ball instead of chicken.
      Persian Fesenjan usually made with either Chicken or small meat ball (1~2 cm).
      Also you may use any type of birds meat, such as duck as Elise mentioned above.
      I hope it helps.

    • Bahareh

      I used precooked seitan, which is vegan. See my comment below.

  • Melissa

    Since someone asked, I’ll offer a vegetarian option. Totally not traditional, I just made it up! But, I made this with northern beans, my usual sub for chicken, and butternut squash, which stews up well and seemed like it would work well with the autumnal flavors described. I left out the additional sugar, figuring the squash would add sugar – when I tasted before serving it definitely seemed sweet enough. Otherwise, though, I made it to instruction and the beans and squash worked well.

  • VG

    Just wanted to say thank you!! My husband made this dish last week and it was incredible!! I’m always coming back to your site for all of the classics, and this one will definitely stay in rotation. Thanks again!

  • Katie

    I made this dish tonight and it was FANTASTIC!! I made my own pomegranate molasses from organic pomegranate juice. I only had 4oz. of walnuts, but it turned out so good! I’m a caterer and this dish has crowd-pleasing potential!

  • Don U.

    We made this last night and all we could say was “Wow”. It was delicious, almost beyond belief. We served it with Israeli couscous, just to promote peace in the region and it was a great combination. By the way, we found the pomegranate molasses at Whole Foods, but it’s also carried at a chain of spice shops called Savory Spices. Thanks so much for the recipe and it will be a regular at our home.

  • dave P

    Made this yesterday and it was absolutely delicious. Highly recommended.

  • Louise

    Seriously delicious. I don’t usually like much sweet with my savory, but this was nicely balanced. I’ll admit we couldn’t wait the full 2 hours for it to cook – it simply smelled too amazing. Served it over a saffron basmati pilaf and it worked perfectly. Somehow, miraculously, we even had leftovers for lunch the next day!

  • Louise Peacocke

    Oh my gosh! This was INCREDIBLE! Unusual and absolutely delicious…it will become now a regular go-to for our suppers. Thank you!

  • Jenn

    Amazing recipe! I made it tonight and made as described, just made a few modifications. First, I used brown sugar instead of white. Then, since I was using my Le Creuset which gets very hot, I cut the initial braising time by 10 minutes. Last, I sped up the last hour of cooking since I was practically drooling waiting for it to finish. The clincher about this dish and ones like it is in the use of a blender or food processor, so I toasted the walnuts as directed and threw them into a container with the molasses, sugar, and spices and ~1/4c of the chicken broth to be whizzed by my immersion blender. The result was a fragrant paste, and I reduced the initial braising liquid by the amount added in the paste. Just a neat workaround for those of us dreading the use of a Cuisinart! This was a beautiful recipe and now I need to find out how else to use the pomegranate molasses.

  • Denise

    My husband made this exactly as written and it was a tasty and savory dish. My son, who favors the sweet over the sour dishes just raved about it. As my husband says when he’s happy with the outcome: “This is a keeper.”

  • Daniela

    I just finished this incredible meal. It took a long time, as I juiced the pomegranates by hand to make the molasses. It was completely worth it; It was warm, nutty, extremely rich, and used some flavors which are not part of my usual cooking repertoire.

    The only thing I changed was reducing the sugar to one tablespoon, and I’m glad I did, as it was perfectly sweet.

    Thank you!

  • Hina

    Are the walnuts supposed to be walnuts halves or ground up in the food processor?

    In this recipe we start with walnut halves, toast them, then grind them in a food processor. Another commenter mentioned that another way it is done is to grind the walnuts first, then toast the ground walnuts. ~Elise

  • sara

    This recipe is not the way most if not all of us Iranians make fesanjan. You must grind the walnuts to a a gritty powder then toast it. I have never seen or heard of making fesanjan without grinding the walnuts first. I recommend anyone trying this recipe to not skip this step. It will stew much better and is the authentic and tastier way to prepare this dish.

  • A Knesal

    Will certainly try this recipe…thanks!

    Regarding ‘lucky Crows’.

    The Crows will manage by dropping them on the road so cars can run over them. It is an annual feast for them here in Oregon as they nonchalantly pick at the crushed shells while casually getting out of the way of approaching cars.

  • Fern Slotman

    So, we made this for dinner tonight and we blown away! I served it over basmati brown rice. We enjoyed the different flavors that came out with every bite. I have never worked with pomegranate before so I bought one and peeled it, but it was not very red and ripe. A bit seedy and not much juice. I will have to study about how to pick them out and what to do to get a ripe one. Served it with bowl of tossed salad and because I forgot to pick up a loaf of fresh bread at the store had to settle for crescent rolls. Enjoyed it with a bottle of Tormenta Cabernet Sauvignon. Thank you for this delicious recipe that expanded our culinary borders. And now it’s time to eat the raspberry pie that my hubby made this morning.

  • Erika

    I made this last night and it was delicious. Unfortunately, I did not have time to cook it for two hours (or longer) but it was quite tasty as a quick meal. Next time I’ll cook it longer as I’m sure the longer cooking time will add to the flavor.

    I added 1/4 teaspoon Advieh which was nice. I think squash would be a good addition or substitution for the chicken.

  • Lex

    Thanks for posting! I lived in the Republic of Georgia, where they have a similair dish called Satsivi. We always just ate it with the freshly baked bread for dipping, but the rice sounds much healthier. When are you going to put together a cookbook?

  • Geoff

    Wow. Seriously good and easy to prepare. Served it over spaghetti squash as we aren’t eating rice or wheat products. Seemed a bit soupy so I removed the top and reduced it to more of a stew. Is this dish supposed to be more soup than stew?

    Hi Geoff, It should be more stew-ish than soupy. ~Elise

  • Vicki

    This dish sounds fabulous and perfect for autumn! Would love to make it this weekend. Can you suggest a substitute for the chicken for those of us who are vegetarians? Thank you!

    Hi Vicki, it’s a slow cooked chicken stew. Your guess is as good as mine when it comes to how to make this without meat. Alternatively you might want to take a look at the eggplant lentil stew with pomegranate molasses recipe here on the site. It’s vegetarian. ~Elise

    • Sharee

      maybe you can use tofu? I’m not vegetarian but have heard others sub tofu for meat proteins in other dishes.

  • Shira

    I just turned this into a 30 minute meal,….. It’s amazing. I did skip the walnuts and turmeric though

  • Judith

    Hooo boy! I’m making this Saturday when we have guests for dinner. What’s the difference between cooking on very low heat on the stovetop and cooking at very low temp in the oven?

    Either way will work! ~Elise

  • [email protected]

    this is one of or favorite stews at home, though we make it in a slightly different way. first of all, all the ingredients for the sauce go in separately, but also we stew it for 7 hours or so taking a break in the middle (usually overnight) to let it rest.this allows the walnut oil to rise straight up on top of the stew which adds another dimension of flavor. apparently this is the more traditional way of doing things, but whatever it is, we love it. here’s how we make it:

  • Lydia (The Perfect Pantry)

    Chicken fesenjan is one of the first dishes I learned to make after moving to Boston’s South End, which at one time was home to a large Lebanese and Syrian population. The Syrian Grocery carried — and still does — all of the ingredients for Middle Eastern cooking, and my recipe came from the owners of the market, who were happy to share it.