Moroccan chicken, my favorite! Chicken thighs, rubbed with an abundant amount of spices, cooked until tender with olives and lemons.
This is a slow cooker riff off our popular tagine recipe. Boneless skinless chicken thighs are sprinkled with paprika, ginger, cumin, turmeric, coriander, and more, placed on a bed of chopped onions, and slow cooked with green olives, lemon slices, and raisins until fork tender.
The spice list is long, if you are missing one or two, don't stress about it. Feel free to experiment with the amounts and find what works for you.
I do love the subtle addition of crushed fennel seeds, and I recommend not going overboard with cinnamon, which can be bitter in large amounts.
If you don't want raisins or dried fruit, add a cup of sliced carrots the last hour of cooking.
Slow Cooker Chicken with Moroccan Spices
We are using boneless (and skinless) chicken thighs for this recipe only because they're easier to deal with. Feel free to use bone-in thighs (you'll need 2 1/2 pounds) if you prefer.
You can substitutes dates or prunes for the raisins.
- 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed of excess fat (don't trim all the fat, just large pieces)
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed fennel seeds
- 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 red onion, roughly chopped, about 2 cups
- 3 cloves garlic, minced (about 1 Tbsp)
- 1 cup pitted green olives
- 1/2 cup raisins
- 1/2 fresh lemon, thinly sliced
- Fresh cilantro or parsley for garnish
Salt the chicken thighs
Sprinkle 1/2 teaspoon of salt over the chicken thighs. Let sit while you prep the other ingredients.
Whisk the spices together
Whisk together the spices in a small bowl—the paprika, ground ginger, ground cumin, ground coriander, turmeric, cinnamon, allspice, crushed fennel seeds, and nutmeg.
Layer onions, chicken, spices, garlic, olives, raisins, lemon slices in slow cooker
Place chopped onions at the bottom of a slow cooker bowl. Layer the chicken thighs on top of the onions. As you layer the chicken thighs, sprinkle them all over with the spice mix. (Use all of the spice mix.)
Add the garlic, green olives, raisins, and lemon slices.
There's a lot of lemon here, but in the end, the lemon should add a subtle flavor, standing in for preserved lemon.
Cook in slow cooker
Cook on the high setting of the slow cooker for 2 to 2 1/2 hours, or 4 to 5 hours on the low setting (depending on your slow cooker brand). Towards the end of cooking, stir so that the lemons olives and raisins get mixed into the liquid. The chicken is done when it is fall apart tender.
Serve with couscous or rice (use rice if cooking gluten-free). Garnish with fresh cilantro and/or parsley.