Harissa Chicken with Couscous and Mint Sauce

Harissa Chicken with Couscous and Mint Sauce. Chicken marinated in a homemade harissa sauce, served over a fresh herb couscous, and topped with a mint yogurt sauce. Full of delicious, unique flavor!

Harissa Chicken with Couscous and Mint Sauce. Chicken marinated in a homemade harissa sauce, served over a fresh herb couscous, and topped with a mint yogurt sauce. Full of delicious, unique flavor!

Harissa

I have always enjoyed experimenting with foods and spices from different cultures, but writing this blog has given me a good reason to step it up a notch.

Frequently, I look up recipes from around the world to get inspiration for my next meal. I have seen multiple recipes using harissa, and have wanted to try it. However, my grocery store does not carry harissa sauce. So, that means I had to learn to make my own.

Traditionally, harissa sauce is made with spice seeds. As my grocery store doesn’t have many options in terms of spice seeds, I made the harissa for this recipe with ground spices. This may not be traditional Moroccan harissa, but it is delish!

Harissa Chicken with Couscous and Mint Sauce. Chicken marinated in a homemade harissa sauce, served over a fresh herb couscous, and topped with a mint yogurt sauce. Full of delicious, unique flavor!

Recipe Development

For the couscous, I wanted to use fresh herbs. My mother-in-law recently gave me a large bag of fresh oregano, so I used that as it worked well with the other flavors. I added some beans to give the couscous some dimension, and coriander to help it flow with the harissa flavored chicken.

Finally, I needed a sauce. I know that Moroccan food sometimes uses mint sauce, and knew it would pair well with the harissa, so I made a lemon-mint sauce. This meal turned out fabulously!! It was approved by my entire family, including my 1 year old.

Harissa Chicken with Couscous and Mint Sauce. Chicken marinated in a homemade harissa sauce, served over a fresh herb couscous, and topped with a mint yogurt sauce. Full of delicious, unique flavor!

Harissa Chicken with Couscous and Mint Sauce

This harissa chicken with couscous and mint sauce is not difficult to make, and has interesting, delicious flavors! Although it has a hint of spice, it is mild enough for my toddler and preschooler to eat. You should add this to your next meal plan.

5/1/2019: Post updated with new photos and recipe notes.

Harissa Chicken with Couscous and Mint Sauce. Chicken marinated in a homemade harissa sauce, served over a fresh herb couscous, and topped with a mint yogurt sauce. Full of delicious, unique flavor!
Harissa Chicken with Couscous and Mint Sauce. Chicken marinated in a homemade harissa sauce, served over a fresh herb couscous, and topped with a mint yogurt sauce. Full of delicious, unique flavor!

Harissa Chicken with Couscous and Mint Sauce

Harissa Chicken with Couscous and Mint Sauce. Chicken marinated in a homemade harissa sauce, served over a fresh herb couscous, and topped with a mint yogurt sauce. Full of delicious, unique flavor!
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Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Moroccan
Keyword: Harissa Chicken over Couscous
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Resting Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 361kcal

Ingredients

Chicken and Harissa Sauce

  • 1.5 pounds chicken breast sliced in half if thick
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 red onion chopped
  • 1 jalapeno pepper seeds removed, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon caraway seeds
  • 3 tbsp jarred roasted red pepper
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 lemon juice and zest of
  • 2 tbsp butter melted
  • 2 tbsp honey

Couscous

  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 onion chopped
  • 1 cup couscous
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 can cannelini beans rinsed and drained
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp fresh oregano chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander powder

Mint Sauce

  • 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 tbsp fresh mint chopped finely
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice

Instructions

Harissa and Chicken

  • Heat olive oil in a small pot over medium-high heat. Next, add red onion, jalapeno pepper, and garlic. Saute until onion and pepper have softened, about 5 minutes. Remove and set aside.
  • Reduce heat to low. Add caraway seeds and saute for about 60 seconds. Remove from heat.
  • Place onion, jalapeno pepper, garlic, roasted red pepper, coriander, cumin, cayenne pepper, salt, lemon juice, and lemon zest in a small food processor. Blend until smooth, about 2 minutes.
  • Return mixture to pot and place over medium heat on stove top. Stir in butter and honey. Continue stirring until smooth. Remove from heat.
  • If chicken breasts are thick, slice each breast in half horizontally, so that each piece is about 1/2″ in thickness. Place chicken in bowl with lid or sealable bag. Pour sauce over chicken and stir. Cover bowl or seal bag and place in refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Line baking pan with aluminum foil overlapping the sides. Place chicken with sauce in pan. Fold aluminum foil so that top of chicken is covered. If aluminum foil doesn’t cover the top, use another piece to cover.
  • Bake for 35-45 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through.

Couscous

  • Melt butter in medium sized sauce pan over medium-high heat. Add onion and saute until softened, about 5 minutes. Add chicken broth and bring to a boil. Once liquid is boiling, add couscous and beans. Cover pot and remove from heat. Let sit until liquid is absorbed, about 10 minutes.
  • Once liquid has absorbed, stir in lemon juice, coriander, and oregano.

Mint sauce

  • In a small bowl, stir together all ingredients for sauce. Place in refrigerator for at least 1 hour before serving.

Serving

  • Slice chicken. Serve chicken, with the sauce from the pan, over couscous. Top with mint sauce.

Notes

  • If you like a strong lemon flavor for the couscous, you can do the following: When you add the chicken broth, also add the zest of one lemon. After the couscous has cooked, double the lemon juice so that you stir in 4 tbsp of lemon juice.
  • The mint sauce recipe is enough for about 1-2 tbsp of sauce per serving. If you prefer more sauce, double the sauce recipe.

Nutrition

Calories: 361kcal | Carbohydrates: 33g | Protein: 30g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 88mg | Sodium: 994mg | Potassium: 595mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 320IU | Vitamin C: 21mg | Calcium: 51mg | Iron: 1.3mg
Harissa Chicken with Couscous and Mint Sauce. Chicken marinated in a homemade harissa sauce, served over a fresh herb couscous, and topped with a mint yogurt sauce. Full of delicious, unique flavor!

If you enjoyed this Harissa Chicken with Couscous and Mint Sauce, you should check out these other SugarSpicesLife Recipes:

Chicken and Vegetable Salad with Yogurt Tahini Sauce
Greek Chicken over Orzo Lentil Salad
Middle Eastern Chicken and Rice with Tahini Yogurt Sauce
Chicken and Vegetable Farro Salad

Links to items used to make this recipe:

Microplate Zester
Chicago 9×13 pan for baking chicken
Caphalon pots for sauce and couscous

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