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One Pan Israeli Couscous with Chicken

This quick and tasty One Pan Israeli Couscous with Chicken recipe is perfect for a nutritious weeknight dinner as well as a lunch get-together. Spiced with turmeric, coriander, smoked paprika, garlic, and ginger, this aromatic and flavorful dish might just become your favorite go-to meal.

Serving tray with healthy Delicious Chicken Israeli CousCous Dinner.

Israeli Couscous is the star of this One Pan Israeli Couscous with Chicken recipe ~ which has become one of our favorite fusion meals.

What is Israeli Couscous?

Israeli Couscous, also called Pearl Couscous, are tiny globes of pasta made with toasted semolina flour. They were invented in Israel as a substitute for rice during the 1950s, when rice was scarce. In Israel they are referred to as ptitim. You can learn more about the history of Israeli Couscous here.

What are the flavors in this One Pan Israeli Couscous with Chicken?

In this fusion recipe, Israeli Couscous mingles with onions, ginger, garlic, and chicken drumsticks which are then drenched in Sri Lankan spice staples such as coriander and turmeric. Also rounding off the spices are smoked paprika and chili powder. Served with chili flakes, parsley, and pomegranate arils, this dish is both easy and exotic.

Sauteing onions ginger garlic chicken to make chicken couscous dinner

Spice Substitutions:

Nutritious and delicious, this dish is incredibly versatile in that you can substitute the spices used. Instead of a combination of turmeric, coriander, smoked paprika, and chili powder, you could use Berbere or Jaffna Curry Powder.

Make it plant-based:

You can make this a plant-based meal by using chickpeas instead of chicken. This would also cut the cooking time down by 15 minutes or so.

One pan Delicious Chicken Israeli CousCous Dinner.

I’ve made this dish more times than I can count. And, with slight variations in the spices used. But, each time, this recipe has been a huge success.

So much of a success that I’m torn between making this or this Sweet Spicy Air Fryer Salmon for our small Christmas lunch.

Our Christmas 2021 Menu:

Christmas 2020 was very, very different from the years past. Not only were we trying to follow CDC guidelines in all situations, but that Christmas eve leading into Christmas, Atlanta, Georgia, also faced the possibility of snow!

I realize that I am not equipped for handling snow and ice. Not only do I not have the equipment, I also do not have the mental capacity to cope with freezing temperatures – even with my two coats on!

So, this Christmas, my daughter and I might just stay home and feast on this One Pan Israeli Couscous with Chicken.

Easy one pot Israeli couscous chicken dinner meal.

We might also add in this Easy Christmas Salad,

Sauteed Warm Easy Christmas Salad

And, these Veggie Meatless Meatballs with some Mango Chutney.

Meatless Veggie Balls

We might also add in some Mincemeat Pies with homemade mincemeat,

homemade mincemeat pies

Some of these delicious Custard Pies,

Spiked with nutmeg and cardamom, lusciously creamy egg custard is enveloped in a tasty sweet pastry in these Custard Pies.

A vegan vanilla cupcake

Easy vegan Cupcakes with vegan chocolate frosting

As well as split a Sri Lankan Christmas Cake Cupcake between us.

Boozy Christmas Cake Cupcakes - RunninSrilankan

Also on our Christmas menu are these Sweet Potato dog treats for our Ollie which will follow his Christmas meal of baked salmon, sweet potato, and broccoli.

Hoping this Christmas and holiday season brings you and your family blessings of happiness, health, and delicious food!

Easy one pot Israeli couscous chicken dinner meal.

One Pan Israeli Couscous with Chicken

Yield: 5 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes

This quick and tasty One Pan Israeli Couscous with Chicken recipe is perfect for a nutritious weeknight dinner as well as a lunch get-together. Spiced with turmeric, coriander, smoked paprika, garlic, and ginger, this aromatic and flavorful dish might just become your favorite go-to meal.


  • 3 tbsp. oil
  • 1 large yellow onion
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 1 inch knob of ginger
  • 6 chicken drumsticks (skin on)
  • 1 1/4 cup Israeli (pearl) couscous
  • 1 1/2 cups water of chicken stock
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 4 tsp coriander
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/4 tsp cloves
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 tbsp. fresh parsley
  • 1 tbsp. chili flakes
  • 2 tbsp. pomegranate arils


  1. Peel and chop onion, garlic cloves, and ginger.
  2. Add the oil to a pan and place it over medium heat and add in the onion.
  3. Let onion sauté for about 5 minutes - stir it often so it doesn't burn.
  4. Add in the peeled and chopped garlic cloves and ginger and sauté about 2 more minutes.
  5. Then, use your cooking utensil and push the sautéed onions, garlic, and ginger to the sides of the pan. And add in the chicken drumsticks. Do not wash the chicken before adding it to the pan as any germs will be killed as it cooks.
  6. Cover pan and let chicken drumsticks cook for about 10 minutes, shaking pan up so drumsticks don't burn. They shouldn't because of all the juices released but just to make sure, just shake the pan a few times.
  7. Uncover pan, and flip chicken drumsticks over. Cover pan and let drumsticks sauté another 2-3 minutes.
  8. Uncover pan and add in the Israeli Couscous (Pearl Couscous). Also sprinkle in the coriander, chili powder, turmeric, smoked paprika, cloves.
  9. Also add in the water or chicken stock and stir a little. Then, cover pan and let cook over medium heat for another 10 minutes.
  10. While this cooks, rinse and chop the parsley.
  11. Uncover pan, give the ingredients a good stir. Turn stove off and remove from the heat.
  12. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  13. Serve garnished with parsley, chili flakes, and pomegranate arils.
  14. Enjoy warm!
  15. Can be stored for 3-5 days in the refrigerator.
Nutrition Information
Yield 6 servings Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 272Total Fat 16gSaturated Fat 3gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 12gCholesterol 117mgSodium 215mgCarbohydrates 7gFiber 2gSugar 2gProtein 24g

Did you make this recipe?

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Easy Peach Chutney Recipe (refined sugar-free, gluten-free)

Wednesday 6th of April 2022

[…] you are serving this chutney as a side dish to a dish like this Israeli couscous and chicken or these veggie burgers, then, this chutney can be served […]


Thursday 23rd of December 2021

Do you use whole or ground cloves? This looks delicious! Can’t wait to make it!


Friday 7th of January 2022

Hi Kimberly, I used ground cloves - hope you enjoy.

Easy Cinnamon Apple Breakfast Couscous Recipe

Tuesday 9th of November 2021

[…] Israeli couscous, also called pearl couscous, is the size of a peppercorn and takes about 10 minutes to cook. Israeli couscous tastes mild and a bit nutty. I love serving it in dishes like this One Pan Israeli Couscous with Chicken. […]

Christian Langdon

Tuesday 20th of April 2021

Just made this dish and wow the flavors are on point. My wife and I are keeping it easy on sodium intake and this was perfect for our dietary needs. What a dish !


Tuesday 22nd of December 2020

Oh this looks amazing. So much flavour in one dish.

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