Moroccan Chicken Tagine with Butternut Squash Chickpeas and Olives

4.75 from 24 votes
4 hours 30 minutes
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Moroccan Chicken Tagine with Butternut Squash, Chickpeas and Olives is a lovely, budget-friendly, low-stress exotic dinner you’ll love coming home to or serving to guests!

“Gosh, we adored this dish tonight. My 93-year-old mother kept going back for more. I made it in the afternoon and set it on high for 4 hours, and it was fabulous. It felt like we took good care of ourselves tonight.”

Photo of Moroccan Chicken Tagine with Butternut Squash Chickpeas and Olives on gray-rimmed platter garnished with lemon wedges and cilantro.

Hey, friends!  It’s that slow-cooker time of year!  I’ve got a super-easy and budget-friendly dish you’re going to love!  Moroccan Chicken Tagine with Butternut Squash, Chickpeas and Olives!

Now, I’ve clearly got a butternut squash thing happening in my life right now but we have about a bushel of it in our pantry so please stay with me!  And who doesn’t love a creative butternut squash recipe?

This Moroccan Chicken Tagine with Butternut Squash, Chickpeas and Olives has got it goin’ on!

What is a tagine?

A tagine sounds exotic but it’s really only the Moroccan version of a slow cooker.

A tagine is both a dish and a cooking vessel.  The cooking vessel has a conical shape which is meant to preserve every single drop of precious moisture in a climate with very little moisture.  Steam from the dish collects on the sides of the tagine then drops back down to continue the slow cooking process.  The same thing happens in a slow cooker!

How to make Moroccan Chicken Tagine with Butternut Squash, Chickpeas and Olives in a slow cooker:

  • Start by combining the vegetables, chickpeas and olives at the bottom of the slow cooker.
  • Combine the spices in a small bowl and sprinkle half on the chicken thighs.
  • Brown the chicken thighs well then place on the vegetables.
  • Stir the remaining spice mixture into the vegetable combination.
Photo of chicken thighs in slow-cooker after being browned.
  • Set the slow cooker on High for 4 hours or Low for 8 hours and let it go!
Photo of Moroccan Chicken Tagine with Butternut Squash Chickpeas and Olives in slow cooker after being cooked.
  • Add cilantro, place it on a platter, garnish and look like a global culinary superhero!  That’s it!
Photo of Moroccan Chicken Tagine with Butternut Squash Chickpeas and Olives on gray-rimmed platter garnished with cilantro and lemon wedges.

If you add the olives near the end, they’ll keep their beautiful black color.  However, I put them in at the beginning and I think they added more flavor to the whole dish.

Mwwaaaah!!!

Photo of one serving of Moroccan Chicken Tagine with Butternut Squash, Chickpeas and Olives in black bowl.
Photo of one serving of Moroccan Chicken Tagine with Butternut Squash, Chickpeas and Olives in black bowl.
Moroccan Chicken Tagine with Butternut Squash Chickpeas and Olives - Close-up shot of butternut squash, chickpea and olive combination in black bowl

Be sure to try my other Moroccan-inspired dishes!

For more great bone-in chicken thigh recipes, check out: 30 Best Bone-In Chicken Thigh Recipes.

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Moroccan Chicken Tagine with Butternut Squash Chickpeas and Olives - Hero overhead shot of dish on gray-rimmed platter garnished with lemon wedges and cilantro

Moroccan Chicken Tagine with Butternut Squash Chickpeas and Olives

4.75 from 24 votes

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By: Carol | From A Chef’s Kitchen
Moroccan Chicken Tagine with Butternut Squash, Chickpeas and Olives is lovely, budget-friendly, low-stress exotic dinner you’ll love coming home to or serving to guests!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours 15 minutes
Total Time 4 hours 30 minutes
Course Chicken and Turkey
Cuisine Moroccan
Servings 4
Calories 505 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 small butternut squash - peeled and cubed (1/2-inch cubes — approximately 2 cups)
  • 2 large plum tomatoes - seeded and chopped
  • 1 medium onion - finely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic - minced
  • 1 can (15-ounce) garbanzo beans (chickpeas) - drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins
  • 1/2 cup pitted Kalamata olives - halved
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 chicken thighs - with the skin on the bone
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro - plus sprigs for garnish
  • Lemon wedges

Instructions
 

  • Combine first 8 ingredients in the bottom of a slow cooker.
  • Combine coriander, cumin, ginger, turmeric, salt, cinnamon and cayenne in a small bowl.
  • Heat olive oil over medium-high heat in a nonstick skillet or saute pan. Sprinkle approximately half the spice mixture over the chicken thighs. Stir the remaining spice mixture into the butternut squash/chickpea combination.
  • Place chicken thighs in hot oil then brown well 6-8 minutes. Turn over and brown the other side in the hot, spicy fat for another 3-4 minutes.
  • Place chicken thighs in the slow cooker and pour any accumulated fat from the skillet into the slow cooker.
  • Cover and cook on High for 4 hours or Low for 8 hours.
  • Stir chopped cilantro into butternut squash/chickpea combination.
  • Place butternut squash/chickpea combination on a platter, top with chicken and sprinkle with cilantro. Garnish with cilantro sprigs and lemon wedges and serve immediately.

Notes

MAKE AHEAD: Assemble the vegetables, chickpeas and olives in the bottom of the slow cooker. Brown the chicken thighs and place on top. Refrigerate until you’re ready to cook it.

Nutrition

Calories: 505kcal | Carbohydrates: 44g | Protein: 22g | Fat: 29g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 15g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 111mg | Sodium: 870mg | Potassium: 1247mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 17g | Vitamin A: 20472IU | Vitamin C: 52mg | Calcium: 151mg | Iron: 4mg

These are estimated values generated from a nutritional database using unbranded products. Please do your own research with the products you’re using if you have a serious health issue or are following a specific diet.

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Recipe Rating




29 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Gosh we adored this dish tonight. My 93 year-old mother kept going back for more. I made it in the afternoon and set it on high for 4 hours and it was fabulous. Felt like we took good care of ourselves tonight. Thank you carol.

  2. 5 stars
    Absolutely outstanding recipe! It reminds me of dishes I have eaten in Cordoba (Andalucia, Spain) which the Moors ruled for 800 years, and consequently much influenced the local cuisine until this day. So delicious! Thanks for sharing this.

    1. Hi, Patricia, Thanks so very much and so happy you love this recipe! I love learning about all the different influences in the various cuisines so thank you for that information. Thanks again!