Chicken and Rice with Dates & Olives

Prep Time 15 minutes  

Cook Time 50 minutes                  

Total Time 1 hour and 5 Minutes             

Servings for4 people

This Chicken and rice recipe is a variation on another Moroccan Chicken dish that has been transformed into a complete meal with the addition of rice. But not just any rice, but the most delicious rice you’ve ever prepared.

The rice for this meal is cooked in the same skillet as the chicken, along with sautéed onions, sweet dates, and salty olives. Preserved lemons (or lemon zest), roasted almonds, fresh herbs, and a squeeze of lemon round off the dish. The end product is the most delicious blend of sweet and salty! Delicious and tasty.

This one-skillet meal has a lengthy ingredient list and several processes, but don’t let that put you off. It’s actually fairly simple to put together. It is better when you marinate the chicken, and then that’s it. Then it’s only a matter of creating your rice station and putting it all together.

Green olives combine with sweet dates to create the most delectable flavour combination. Marinating the chicken overnight is important to seal in the gentle aromatics, but you could definitely do two nights here. There’s no need to brown the chicken since it browns itself in the oven as it cooks with the rice.


Ingredientsfor the Chicken:

3 garlic cloves, minced

Lemon zest

1 teaspoon sea salt

1 teaspoon sweet paprika or Chicken Seasoning

1 teaspoon ground cumin

½ teaspoon ground ginger

¼ teaspoon ground turmeric

2 Cinnamon Sticks

2 tablespoons Greek Extra Virgin Olive Oil

8 small bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (about 3 lbs or 1/4 kg)

*You can also buy all the necessary ingredients which are highlighted quality is incomparable in the United Kingdom and they have the Free UK Standard Delivery (learn more).


Ingredients for the Rice:


4 tablespoons Greek Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1/4 cup Apricot Kernelsor Raw Pistachios (No shell)

1 small onion, finely diced

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 cup Rice (Pure Basmati)

100 gram Medjool Dates

100 gram dicedKalamata Olives In Extra Virgin Olive Oil (Pitted)

2 1/2 cups chicken broth

1 good pinch of Saffron (Spanish)

lemon juice

chopped parsley and mint

*You can also buy all the necessary ingredients which are highlighted quality is incomparable in the United Kingdom and they have the Free UK Standard Delivery (learn more).

How to make Chicken and Rice with Dates and Olive?


  1. As we mentioned before, you’ve got the best result if you marinate the chicken two nights before cooking them. Lemon juice and yoghurt are the best combinations for chicken. This method gives you a juicy soft chicken after roasting it in the oven. You can also use other methods:
  2. Combine the minced garlic, lemon zest, sea salt, paprika, cumin, ginger, turmeric, cinnamon, and olive oil in a dish large enough to hold the chicken. Rub the spice paste all over the chicken and place it in the dish. Refrigerate for at least six hours, preferably overnight.
  3. Preheat the oven to 225°C, make sure your oven is completely clean.
  4. Warm the 1/4 cup olive oil in a largehigh-sided pan over medium-low heat. Cook, stirring often, until the nuts are golden brown and aromatic, approximately 2 minutes. Set away using a slotted spoon, leaving the oil in the pan.
  5. Increase the heat to medium and stir in the onion and salt. 5 minutes, tossing periodically, until golden brown and slightly softened.
  6. Stir in the cumin and rice for about a minute to coat it with the oil and roast it a little.
  7. add the dates, olives, broth, and saffron.
  8. Dip the chicken in so that the skin is up and above the broth.
  9. Transfer to a preheated oven and roast for 40 minutes, or until the chicken reaches 100°C and all of the liquid has been absorbed.
  10. Take out the dish from the oven and Allow for 5 minutes before adding the lemon juice and garnishing with the preserved lemon, roasted nuts, and fresh herbs. Enjoy this tasty dish with your family!


Tips for cooking better Moroccan Chicken and Rice with olive and dates:


It is not an issue if you marinated the meat in the same pan you were planning to use for roasting. You had to take everything, lay it in a basin, then clean, dry, and line the pan since you presumably didn’t want to roast it all without first coating it with parchment. You might have prevented all of this by simply marinating the meat in a big freezer bag. You could still store the bag in the pan in the fridge, but you wouldn’t have to fiddle about attempting to clean the pan.

If you wish to make this dish ahead of time for another dinner, place all of the components in freezer bags and store them in the freezer straight immediately. When you know you’re going to have this for supper, take the bag out 24-36 hours ahead of time and place it in the fridge to defrost. It will begin marinating as soon as it thaws.


If you’re in preparation mode and wanted to make an easy-cook meal for busy days, put all of the items in freezer bags. Place the freezer bags in the freezer. When you’re in the mood for this dish, take a bag out of the freezer and place it in the fridge to defrost for 36-48 hours. You’ll have perfectly marinated beef ready to go! Simply arrange in the baking dish, pour the wine and molasses, and bake!

Cooking Rice:

Basmati Rice can be tricky, if it is your first time cooking basmati rice, you should know some tips to have a better result. It would be great if you wash rice before cooking it. Wash them until the water becomes completely clean. Some people say you will get a better result if you soak them in water for a couple of hours before cooking them. Also if you’re cooking this recipe in the pot, it is better to use a piece of fabric on the lid.

Nutrition facts (estimated)

Amount Per 1 Serving

Calories                1350 Kcal

Total Fat               41.5g

Sodium                 1118 mg

Potassium           2122 mg

Total Carbohydrates       116 g

Sugars   89 g

Dietary Fiber      32 g

Protein                                87.44g

Vitamin C             58.4mg

Iron        12.4mg

Calcium                               273.7mg