Moroccan Chicken Recipe


This Moroccan Chicken recipe is very typical of Moroccan Jewish cooking. The flavor of fresh lemons, combined with olive oil and black olives makes for a bright and memorable dish. You will want to prepare this again and again. If you would like to make a more authentic version of this dish, substitute preserved lemons.

Moroccan Chicken Recipe Photo

Moroccan Chicken. Photo courtesy


2 3 ½ pound chickens
6 lemons
3 cups pitted Greek or Middle Eastern black olives
6 garlic cloves, minely minced
½ cup olive oil
¼ cup fresh rosemary leaves
1 Tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
1 Tablespoon Kosher salt
3 pounds red skin potatoes
1 bunch fresh Italian (flat leaf) parsley


Preheat oven to 400º F.
Using kitchen shears or a heavy knife, cut to and remove the backbones from the chickens. Flatten chickens with the heel of the hand, breaking the breastbones.
Remove zest from lemons and cut into ½ inch strips.
Squeeze the juice from 4 of the lemons.
In a large shallow non-aluminum baking pan, combine the lemon juice, garlic, olives and olive oil.
Put chickens in pan, skin-side down. Set aside 10 minutes.
Turn, skin-side up, and sprinkle with rosemary, thyme, pepper and lemon zest.
Cook for 20 minutes.
Sprinkle with salt and cook 10 minutes more, or until a meat thermometer registers 170º F at the breast.
While the chicken cooks, scrub the potatoes and cut into quarters.
Put in a medium saucepan and cover with lightly salted water. Heat to boiling. Reduce heat to low; cover and cook 20 minutes, or until they are fork-tender.
Drain. Serve the chicken with pan juices and potatoes.
Garnish with parsley.

This Moroccan Chicken Recipe serves 8 people

For another delicious Moroccan Chicken recipe, try this one at

About Rabbi Michael Sternfield

Michael Sternfield has been a Reform rabbi for 40 years, most recently serving at Chicago Sinai Congregation from 1995 until 2013. He served for 20 years as spiritual leader of Congregation Beth Israel in San Diego, and briefly as the leader of the Durban, South Africa Progressive Jewish Congregation during South Africa’s historic transition to multi-racial democracy. He is now based in Los Angeles, California.