Chicken Vegetable Couscous: Let’s go off to Northern Africa for the inspiration behind this fabulously simple dish which uses the worlds smallest pasta – couscous. A blend of Scotch bonnet, Garlic, Onion, bell peppers, and spices adds a touch Savory and spicy to this meal. It’s full of flavor and really quick to make, this meal will be a winner with all the family.
Chicken Vegetable Couscous
It’s very easy to turn couscous into a crowd-pleasing favorite because naturally, it has a mild taste just like Rice, but it can easily take up the taste of any spice, vegetable or meat that is used to cook it. It is simple, inexpensive, nourishing and flavorful. This can easily be put together in a snap, can easily be doubled for a crowd and you can even use it as meal prep for the week because it stores really well and it can also be made with or without meat for a vegetarian twist.
It is loaded with bell peppers, onions, and spices like paprika, curry powder with salt and pepper. One of the reasons why I love couscous is because it’s very versatile, it’s very easy to work with and you can customize it any way you want and it takes little time to put together. It is a good way to make good use of whatever veggie happens to be lingering in your crisper drawer begging to be used.
According to North African tradition, couscous is a symbol of good luck, abundance, and blessings and as a result of this, it is often prepared to celebrate a holiday or housewarming. This couscous recipe is a meal in itself, and you can also eat it as a side dish.
Variations in making this chicken and vegetable couscous
- For a slightly nutty flavor, add some sliced almonds
- Simply skip the chicken for a vegetarian version.
- Add some dark or golden raisins for a sweet variation
A little extra worth knowing about couscous
- Couscous is the staple product of North Africa
- It is the national dish of the countries of Maghrib – Algeria, Morocco, and Tunisia.
- Couscous is a granular form of pasta.
- It is made from semolina, obtained by grinding the heart of Wheat.
- It cooks very quickly and it has a mild nutty flavor
- One cup of cooked couscous contains 200 calories: 12% protein, 87% starch, and only 1% fats.
- One cup of couscous provides 35% of your recommended daily requirement of fibers.
- Couscous is safe to eat at any age group, in fact, infants can also eat couscous as soon they’re ready to transition into solid foods.
- This recipe calls for boneless chicken. I used the Boneless Chicken thighs. However, the chicken breast will work just fine.
- I used chicken stock instead of water as I do with most recipes. It helps to intensify the flavor
- If your kids don’t like it spicy, you can leave out the scotch bonnet
For veggie lovers, you might want to try my loaded vegetable couscous.
Chicken Vegetable Couscous
- 4 tbsp oil divided into two
- 1-1/2 lb boneless chicken thighs cubed or cut into strips
- 2 cups couscous
- 1 tsp paprika
- ½ tsp curry powder
- salt and pepper to taste
- 3/4 cup onion
- 1 scotch bonnet seed removed and minced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 red bell Pepper
- 4 green onions divided
- 2 cups chicken stock
- Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a medium pan over medium heat, and add the chicken. Season with paprika, curry powder, salt, and black pepper, and cook till done—about 7 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil into the same pan, and add the onions, scotch bonnet, garlic, and bell peppers. Stir-fry for about 3 to 5 minutes.
- Stir in half of the green onions, add the stock and leave to come to a rolling boil.
- Add couscous, stir briefly, cover immediately, take it off the heat and leave it to rest for 5 to 6 minutes.
- Stir in the chicken, green onion, and parsley.
- Use half of the habanero or skip it entirely if you don’t like heat.
- Make sure the liquid comes to a rolling boil before adding the couscous.
- As a rule of thumb, the ratio of liquid to couscous is 1:1. A little extra may result in a mushy couscous.
- You need to use a very good stock. Otherwise, your food might turn out bland. If your stock is not concentrated enough, feel free to use a stock cube to enhance the flavor of the couscous.
If you make this Chicken Vegetable Couscous, I’d love to see pictures of your creations on Instagram and Facebook.#cheflolaskitchen