Shredded chicken, sweet potato, zucchini, carrots, broccolini, and red bell peppers cooked in a harissa and fire-roasted tomato sauce seasoned with lemon, olives, capers, cumin, cinnamon, herbs and with dried cranberries, and sliced almonds for texture to make a rich chicken vegetable stew.
Dinner in No Time
Enjoy this quick Moroccan-inspired chicken dinner with couscous or with Easy Spiced Brown Rice and Quinoa, perfect for soaking up the rich tomato sauce spiced with harissa paste. Sometimes you just want that spicy chicken tagine dish but don't have the time.
I suggest serving it with couscous, which cooks in a few minutes. This chicken vegetable stew recipe was also the perfect way to fulfill my cravings quickly.
Whether you are eating this stew with couscous or spiced basmati rice, you have to try it with Curried Chickpeas and Mushrooms with Spiced Brown Basmati Rice, and Curried Air Fryer Lamb Chops with Chickpea Cucumber Salad.
Check out Curry Lentil Turkey Stew and Chicken Meatballs & Israeli Couscous Vegetable Soup for a warm, comforting meal.
Can't find harissa paste? For a quick homemade harissa sauce, try Quick Harissa Sauce.
If you love this recipe, you will really like Air Fryer Roasted Harissa Salmon with Paprika Potatoes and Brussel Sprouts and Spicy Chicken Burger with Harissa Eggplant and Portobello Mushrooms.
Before we make the sauce, sear the chicken breasts to a nice golden brown color in a large pot. Then, remove the chicken and set it aside. For the sauce base, sweat the onion and garlic until tender, then deglaze the pan with white wine.
The liquid will help release all the goodness from the pan, creating depth in the sauce's flavor. Then add the fire-roasted tomatoes, harissa paste, parsley, smoked paprika, cumin powder, Italian herb seasoning blend, turmeric powder, ground cinnamon, and allspice powder.
See the chicken vegetable stew recipe for quantities.
Mix well, then add the seared chicken breast back along with the sweet potatoes, carrot, and chicken broth. This will allow the chicken to cook along with the root vegetables thoroughly. Once the chicken is cooked, you will remove it and let it rest for 5 minutes, allowing all the juices to settle so when you shred it not all over your cutting board.
Mix the chicken into the simmering stew and add the red bell pepper, zucchini, broccolini, lemon juice, slivered almonds, capers, olives, and dried cranberries to cook for 3 minutes covered. Once complete, served with your favorite couscous or spiced rice, try Easy Spiced Brown Rice and Quinoa. For the couscous recipe, use the instructions on the package.
See the chicken vegetable stew recipe card for quantities.
Ensure to sear the chicken in a hot pan with heated oil to prevent sticking.
The flavorful bits left by the seared chicken help color the stew base.
White wine helps deglaze the pan by removing the cooked goodness from the bottom of the pan.
Continue to cook the onions to build up the flavor.
Once the rich tomato soup base has cooked, add the chicken, which adds flavor while it cooks.
The liquid should cover most of the chicken to give enough cooking liquid for the chicken and chunky vegetables.
The sauce will eventually be created through reduction.
The vegetables go in last to keep their bright color and crisp texture. The broccoli should go in on the stew's last three minutes.
Allow the chicken to rest and let its juices settle so it is not all over the cutting board when shredding.
Mix the shredded chicken into the soup to allow the sauce to infuse into the chicken.
The sauce should be thick with a dark red color.
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- Vegetarian - Make this dish vegetarian by omitting the chicken and doubling the zucchini and sweet potatoes or adding yellow squash and eggplant.
- Protein-Packed Vegetarian - Omit the chicken breast and add chickpeas!
- Dried Cranberries - substitute with regular or golden raisins.
- Ras el Hanout - If you can get your hands on this spice blend, use it to replace the spices in the recipe.
- Store-Bought Harissa Paste - If you are short on time, you can buy prepared Harissa paste. Depending on your location and demographics, you will likely find this paste at your local Middle-Eastern, African, Mediterranean, Halal, and Kosher markets. Recently, I’ve also noticed it at Trader Joe’s.
- Fire-Roasted Tomatoes Alternative Cooking Methods
- Slice tomatoes (Beefsteak: ½-inch slices. Roma Tomatoes: halved horizontally. Cherry or Grap tomatoes - do not cut all at, roast whole). Heat the grilling basket on flames for about 1 minute.
- Remove the basket and coat the grilling basket with a small amount of avocado oil (or another high smoke point oil of your choice, such as canola oil). Then, place the grilling basket back on the grill. Layer the tomatoes on the grilling basket.
- Allow the heat to create blisters on the tomatoes' skin with slight fire marks across the tomatoes. Finally, remove from heat and use.
- Slice tomatoes (Beefsteak: ½-inch slices. Roma Tomatoes: halved horizontally. Cherry or Grap tomatoes - do not cut all at, roast whole). Use the oven broiler setting (Preheat and Use at Medium Heat to 450 degrees Fahrenheit).
- Use a roasting rack and a sheet pan. Then, layer out the tomato pieces with space in between each piece to prevent steaming in the broiling process. Steam will cause prevent charring and blistering.
- Allow the broil to create blisters and slight charing marks on the tomatoes. Then, flip the tomato pieces or shake the pan for intact ones to broil the other side. Finally, remove from heat and use.
Change Heat Level - Modify the chicken vegetable stew recipe's heat level to your liking and learn more about the Scoville Scale and Chili Pairings.
- Harissa Meatballs - Replace the chicken with my Mouthwatering Air Fryer Lemon Pepper Pine Nuts Turkey Meatballs. Just sear them in the pot instead of browning the chicken.
- Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs - Use instead of chicken breast, and leave in the sauce instead of removing it since you will not need to shred it.
Dutch Oven- You can use a 6-quart Dutch oven with enough surface to sear the chicken breasts and cook the vegetables. Try the Lodge 6 Quart Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven with Lid.
Deep Skillet with Cover - If you don't have a Dutch oven, you can use a medium 3 to 4-quart deep skillet to hold the chicken vegetable stew and allow them to cook down. For instance, in some parts of the recipe, you will have to mix the vegetables in, and you want to have enough room. I highly suggest the built-to-last a lifetime, 3-Quart All-Clad D3 3-Ply Stainless Steel Sauté Pan with Lid or the 4-Quart All-Clad HA1 Hard Anodized Nonstick Sauté Pan with Lid.
Kitchen Must Haves - Find other tools I use here.
- Refrigerator - To store in the fridge, you can place the stew in a shallow 2-inch pan to cool down quickly. Then, store it in an airtight container. The meal will last up to two days.
- Freezer - I do not recommend freezing this stew because the zucchini and broccolini, when thawed, will become mushy.
Air Tight Food Containers - I use Glass Food Storage Containers with a plastic clipping lid to store food. For example, I always suggest glass storage containers since you can microwave them and hold food without staining the container, and the glass keeps them at a more stable temperature, which keeps the food fresher longer.
- Enhance the Dish - Sprinkle lemon zest on top to increase the citrus tone of the dish.
- White Wine - I recommend you use Sauvignon Blanc because it can pair with spicy dishes due to its dry note. For instance, you do not want to use a sweet wine. However, you may try Pinot Gris if you can't find Sauvignon Blanc. Remember, these are white wines; do not get it confused with Cabernet Sauvignon, a red wine.
Frequently Asked Questions
Harissa is a spicy North African chili pepper paste; It is pounded into a paste, hence its name, which means “to pound” in Arabic, which has gained global popularity in recent years.
Some make it super spicy, and some have a little kick. Harissa recipes vary greatly, but most typically include red peppers, garlic, coriander, cumin, caraway seeds, olive oil, salt, and sometimes tomatoes or other ingredients such as lemon juice or honey. Its unique blend of flavors and heat makes it an ideal condiment for dishes ranging from couscous to roasted vegetables.
It originated from the Maghreb, Northwest Africa, primarily from Tunisia, although many variations have developed throughout the region. The Maghreb comprises Arabic countries and territories such as Marocco, Tunisia, Libya, Algeria, Mauritania, and Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic.
It is a shallow clay pot with a cone-shaped lid. When cooked in it many times, the pot itself contributes to the taste of the food. Tagines are ideal for stewing vegetables, braising meats, and steaming couscous.
African Inspired Recipes
Looking for other African recipes like this? Try these:
Looking for other poultry recipes like this? Try these:
Spicy Chicken Vegetable Stew with Harissa Tomato Sauce
- 10 ounces of chicken breast skinless
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup onion small chopped
- 3 garlic cloves minced or garlic pressed
- ½ cup Sauvignon Blanc optional
- 1 cup fire roasted tomatoes sauce crushed
- 2 tablespoon Harissa paste
- ¼ cup parsley coarsely chopped
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin powder
- 1 teaspoon Italian herb seasoning blend
- ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon allspice powder
- 1 small sweet potatoes large chunks
- 2 medium carrots large chunks
- 2 cups of low-sodium chicken broth
- ½ red bell pepper medium dice
- 1 small zucchini half moons
- 8 florets broccolini cut into thirds
- ½ lemon freshly squeezed
- 1 tablespoon slivered almonds
- 1 tablespoon capers
- 4 large green olives with pimientos
- 1 tablespoon dried cranberries
- Save time in the kitchen: Read the instructions thoroughly, then gather and prep all your ingredients before cooking! Learn Prepping Tips.
- Prep Chicken: Season chicken with salt and pepper and set aside.
- Brown Chicken: Heat olive oil in a large saute pan on medium-high heat.
- Sear chicken for 2-3 minutes on each side and remove.
- Reduce heat to medium-low.
- Make Sauce Base: Add onions and sweat, cooking it until halfway translucent.
- Add garlic and sweat.
- Deglaze with white wine.
- Add fire-roasted tomatoes, harissa, parsley, smoked paprika, cumin powder, Italian herb seasoning blend, turmeric powder, ground cinnamon, and allspice powder.
- Make Stew: Add chicken, sweet potatoes, carrots, and broth.
- Increase heat to high and bring to a boil.
- Once it boils, lower the heat to medium-high, and cook for about 8 minutes.
- Shred Chicken: Remove the chicken, rest for 5 minutes, then shred. In the meantime, let the sauce continue to reduce.
- Finish Stew: After shredding the chicken, add it to the pot and the rest of the red bell pepper, zucchini, broccolini, lemon juice, slivered almonds, capers, olives, and dried cranberries.
- Cook for another 3 minutes covered.
- Taste for salt. Add if necessary.
- Serve with couscous or spiced rice.
- Cook chicken to a minimum temperature of 165 °F (74 °C).
- Do not use the same utensils on cooked food that previously touched raw meat to prevent food-bourne illness from contaminated uncooked meats.
- Wash hands after touching raw meat to prevent cross-contamination.
- Don't leave food at room temperature for extended periods; this can breed bacteria.
- Never leave cooking food unattended to prevent burns and fires.
- Use oils with a high smoke point to avoid harmful compounds.
- Always have good ventilation when using a gas stove to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning.
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