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One Pot Wonder: Braised Chicken with Olives

We’ve enjoyed 4 seasons in the last week in NYC and this weekend we’re moving back into the chilly zone :(.

So what to eat when the weather is so unpredictable but you still want to cook and eat something delicious, satisfying and nourishing?  One pot wonders do the trick in this situation and there’s minimal clearing up involved too.  Bang for your buck there.

Chicken & Olives

Today’s one pot wonder is braised chicken with garlic, lemon and Spanish olives.  My family lived in rural South East Spain during the 90s and my love of gigantic, amazingly flavorful Spanish olives began there.  They’re as good in tapas as they are in big hearty dishes like this one.

Enjoying a few olives regularly as a part of a balanced diet provides many health benefits such as providing heart healthy monounsaturated fats and antioxidants like polyphenols. Polyphenols are part of a large group of antioxidants and some evidence exists that they help prevent health dangers such as cancer, high blood pressure, heart disease and diabetes.  Good old olives :).


Braised Chicken Thighs with Olives


Serves 4-6

8 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs

Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

3 tbsp olive oil

12 garlic cloves

2 large yellow onions, thinly sliced (about 4 cups)

1 lemon, thinly sliced, seeds discarded

2 tbsp fresh oregano leaves, plus more for garnish (you can also use cilantro)

1 cup mixed Spanish olives

2 tbsp tomato paste

Juice of 2 lemons



  1. Preheat the oven to 350 f. Season the chicken on both sides with salt and pepper.
  2. In a large ovenproof pan big enough to hold all the thighs in a single layer, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, add the chicken, skin-side down, and sear until golden brown, 5 to 6 minutes. Add the garlic cloves to the pan and flip the thighs over. Cook until the garlic is fragrant and has gotten a little brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove the chicken and garlic from the pan and set aside.
  3. With the pan still hot, add the onions, lemon slices and herbs, and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring often, until the onions have wilted and the brown bits on the bottom of the pan have loosened, 6 to 8 minutes. Nestle the thighs skin-side up in the onion mixture and add the garlic and the olives. Add the tomato paste, pour the lemon juice and some water over the chicken and transfer the pan to the oven. Bake for 40 to 50 minutes. Scatter fresh herbs over the top and serve.

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