Cinnamon and Chicken Stew

For the most flavor and juiciness, we cooked the chicken on the bone.
Body+Soul, November 2009
  • Prep Time 10 minutes
  • Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Yield Serves 4
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  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 medium onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon minced, peeled fresh ginger
  • 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 cans (15 ounces each) chickpeas (or 3 1/2 cups fresh chickpeas)
  • 1/2 small lemon, seeded and finely chopped, plus wedges for serving
  • 4 plum tomatoes, coarsely chopped
  • 3 sticks cinnamon
  • 1 whole chicken, cut into pieces, skin removed
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped cilantro, plus more for garnish


  1. Heat a large stockpot over medium heat and add oil. Add onion, ginger, and garlic. Cook, stirring frequently until onions are soft and translucent, about 10 minutes. Add cumin and stir for 30 seconds. Add chickpeas, lemon, tomatoes, and cinnamon; cook until tomatoes soften slightly, about 3 minutes.

  2. Season chicken with 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper; add to pot. Add 1 1/2 cups water, nestling chicken into liquid. Bring to a boil. Reduce to a gentle simmer and cook, partially covered, until chicken is cooked through, about 40 minutes. Remove chicken.

  3. Continue cooking over high heat to reduce slightly if necessary, crushing some chickpeas to thicken. Stir in cilantro. Taste and adjust for seasoning. Spoon chickpeas and liquid into serving bowls, top with chicken. Sprinkle with cilantro and serve with lemon.

Recipe Reviews

Reviews (3)

  • juliebaz 27 Sep, 2011

    This was delicious! I changed the flavor a bit by removing the tomatoes and adding diced butternut squash and peas instead of the second can of chickpeas. Also, I used chicken broth and a little bit of cornstarch instead of water and swapped out the cumin for turmeric. It created more of a fragrant broth than a tomato-based broth. I also removed the chicken, shredded it off the bone and put it back in for more of a stew. Next time I will make with only chicken thighs.

  • robinr303 11 May, 2010

    Took me longer than the estimated time (by a half hour) because I take longer to prep, and I had to reduce the stock over high at the end, but WOW, the fusion of these flavors was amazing. Definitely a favorite and will make again. Looking forward to making it for friends.

  • aolsson 23 Nov, 2009

    I made with chicken breasts to speed up the cooking. Also added some Graham Marsala spice to enhance the flavor. Delicious -- famliy give it four forks (our of five).