Chicken with Dates and Lemon

This recipe for chicken with dates and lemon is the perfect illustration of the food I hope to share on the uglyducklingbakery blog. A friend and I were recently texting about one of my photos, and she said to me, “The dish tonight was perfect, but maybe almost too perfect for your tag line.”

That tag line – Tastes delicious. Looks homemade – is what my cooking and this blog is all about. I hope to share my love of food and provide inspiration for easy weeknight meals or all-day baking adventures. The food I make may or may not be pretty. Either way, food shouldn’t be fussy.

This chicken and date recipe is also easy, perfect for a beginner cook or weeknight dinner when your kiddo distracts you with multiple games of Uno.

Adaptations in this recipe for chicken with dates and lemon

This recipe was inspired by dates in the pantry and Claudia Roden’s Book of Jewish Food. I have ~20 of my mother’s cookbooks, this being one, including her volumes of Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Marcella Hazan’s Classic Italian Cooking, and Craig Claiborne’s NY Times Cookbook from 1961. Roden’s cookbook is a masterpiece, showing the influence of different cultures and local ingredients as they are shared around the world.

This adaptation skips browning the chicken for time and convenience. And adds hazelnuts for a bit of crunch.

FAQs for this chicken with dates and lemon

What to serve with chicken with dates and lemon?

In Morocco, this recipe would be served over couscous. Israeli couscous, also called pearl couscous, is another option.

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5 from 1 vote

Chicken with dates

Author uglyducklingbakery


  • 1 lb boneless chicken breasts or thighs
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 shallots, chopped or sub a red onion
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp turmeric
  • tsp nutmeg
  • tsp ginger powder
  • 1 ½ cup chicken broth or water
  • 6 dates, pitted
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • ¼ cup chopped nuts almonds are traditional here


  • Optional: saute the chicken until lightly browned, then remove from pan.
  • Saute the shallots on low heat until soft.
  • Add spices and toast until fragrant (30-60sec).
  • Add the chicken broth, chicken, and some salt and pepper to the pan. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer, cover, and cook for about 15 minutes until internal temperature reaches 165F.
  • Add dates and lemon juice and cook uncovered for about 10 minutes until the sauce has thickened.
  • Salt and pepper to taste.
  • Serve over couscous or rice, and sprinkle with nuts.

What’s next?

If you make this, please comment here or share a pic with me on Instagram!

Check out other chicken recipes like this cranberry chicken salad or these chicken and apple meatballs.

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