My Persian Chicken recipe is a great make-ahead recipe that you can freeze for later.  Even better, it’s ready in 40 minutes!White bowl with rice and Persian Chicken topped with pomegranate seeds

What is it about pomegranates that just make a meal look so enticing? I think it’s because pomegranates = sophistication.

They’re the culinary fruit equivalent of diamonds. I’ve been a bit obsessed with them recently – even adding them to my hot smoothies.

My bottle of pomegranate molasses however, has – until now – sat in the cupboard, unopened, for about 2 years.  I always meant to use it, along with the ras el hanout, the dusty jar of artichokes and that packet of strawberry Angel Delight (every adult in the UK ate this mousse-made-from-milk-and-powder throughout their childhood).

I was experimenting with some freezer friendly recipes outside of your normal soups, chili and lasagne and I hit upon this:  A tender chicken stew made with ground nuts, stock and molasses.  You can make it ahead and freeze it.  Then simply defrost, re-heat and top with chopped parsley and pomegranate seeds to get a bright looking, fresh tasting meal that feels like you’ve just whipped it up.

It’s got a sweet-yet-tangy taste to it with just a couple of spices in there – meaning it’s mild enough for children and adults alike.

It looks like a recipe you’ve slaved over, but it only takes about 10 minutes prep and 30 minutes to cook.  I’ve modified this Persian Chicken recipe slightly from the original Iranian recipe, adding some garlic, a little lime zest, and also using a combination of ground walnuts and almonds, rather than just walnuts alone.

Serve it over boiled rice, perfect fried rice or cous cous for an easy dinner that everyone will enjoy.

This recipe first appeared on Or So She Says

The Persian Chicken Recipe:

5 from 3 votes

Persian Chicken

Persian Chicken - An impressive freezer recipe made with ground nuts and pomegranate molasses. Ready in 40 minutes.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Persian


  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • 1 medium brown onion peeled and diced
  • 3 chicken breasts diced
  • 130 g (1 cup) walnuts
  • 2 cloves garlic peeled and minced
  • 20 g (1/4 cup) ground almonds
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • ½ tsp salt
  • pinch of ground black pepper
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • zest of half a lime
  • 480 ml (2 cups) of chicken stock
  • 2 tbsp. honey
  • 85 g (1/4 cup) pomegranate molasses **

To Serve:

  • Seeds from half of a fresh pomegranate
  • Small bunch flat-leaf parsley roughly chopped
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  • Melt the butter in a large frying pan/skillet and add the onions. Fry for 2 minutes and then add the chicken. Cook for 5 minutes, until sealed, stirring occasionally.
    2 tbsp. butter, 1 medium brown onion, 3 chicken breasts
  • Whilst the chicken is cooking, place the walnuts in a food processer and blend just until they turn to fine crumbs. Don't over-blend or you'll end up with walnut paste.
    130 g (1 cup) walnuts
  • Add the walnuts, garlic and ground almonds to the pan and cook with the chicken for 1 minute. Add in the turmeric, salt, pepper, cinnamon and lime zest, stir and cook for a further minute.
    2 cloves garlic, 20 g (1/4 cup) ground almonds, 1/2 tsp turmeric, 1/2 tsp salt, pinch of ground black pepper, 1/4 tsp cinnamon, zest of half a lime
  • Add the chicken stock, honey and three-quarters of the molasses. Stir, bring to a gentle bubble and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
    480 ml (2 cups) of chicken stock, 2 tbsp. honey, 85 g (1/4 cup) pomegranate molasses
  • Taste the stew, add more molasses if needed. Cook for a further 5 minutes and then serve on top of boiled rice or cous cous.
  • Top with pomegranate seeds and chopped parsley.
    Seeds from half of a fresh pomegranate, Small bunch flat-leaf parsley


To store in the freezer, allow the Persian stew to cool as quickly as possible, then place in a sealed tub and freeze for up to 1 month (don't add the pomegranate seeds or parsley). Defrost in the fridge or at room temperature, then reheat in a pan until piping hot. Serve topped with pomegranate seeds and chopped parsley.
** Sourcing Pomegranate molasses:
I believe in the US, you’d be able to get hold of it at any Middle Eastern or Kosher store. Amazon sells it, and I think you may find it at Walmart. It’s sometimes called pomegranate syrup.
Alternatively there are a couple of ways you can make it at home (sourced from
1. Squeeze the juice from a large pomegranate then boil the liquid until it has reduced to just two tablespoons.
2. Take 750ml pomegranate juice, 100g sugar and 125ml lemon juice and simmer until reduced to 250ml.
Nutritional Information is per serving.


Calories: 573kcal | Carbohydrates: 28g | Protein: 42g | Fat: 33g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 124mg | Sodium: 1025mg | Potassium: 796mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 17g | Vitamin A: 235IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 65mg | Iron: 1.9mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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  1. Jeff says:

    5 stars
    We just made this for dinner. It’s delicious! We’ll definitely make it again. Thank you for sharing this terrific recipe.

  2. Beverly says:

    5 stars
    For me it needed and extra 10 mins cooking for it to reduce enough but it was delicious! I was skeptical at first when i tasted the sauce on its own but the finished dish is super tasty. I’ll be making this again, thank you

  3. MM says:

    5 stars
    Love the fact that this is gluten free and great to make ahead and freeze.

  4. Pamela says:

    If you have friends coming over to Turkey for a holiday, ask them to bring you a bottle back. It is sold in every supermarket and used as a dressing on salads over here.

  5. Bita @ Honest & Tasty says:

    I like your take on fesenjaan! Fesenjaan is one of my favorite comfort foods. And so perfect for this time of year! I love the tartness from the pomegranate molasses. It’s my favorite part (especially spooned over rice yummmm!). And you have stunning photos too btw. 🙂
    Also, I just wanted to say that your previous recipe, the zucchini, is unbelievably delicious-looking. I want to try it!

    1. Nicky Corbishley says:

      Thanks Bita! I love the molasses too. Still searching for something else to use it for though 🙂

      1. Betty Haniotakis says:

        Have you tried muhammara, a delicious middle eastern dip? It’s very easy to make, once you get past roasting the red peppers (I cheat and use the jarred kind).

  6. Joshua Hampton says:

    This recipe got me curious enough to go searching for pomegranate molasses. I agree, pomegranates seem to add a touch of sophistication to a dish. It’s lovely. Thanks for the recipe.

    1. Nicky Corbishley says:

      Thanks Joshua, I’ve just replied to Jususan’s comment about sourcing the molasses. I’ll add it to the post too.

  7. jesusan says:

    This sounds delicious. It may take some doing to obtain pomegranate molasses in the city I currently live in. Amazon seems to have it covered, albeit expensively. Definitely worth seeking out, though. I’m certain I would enjoy this recipe.

    1. Nicky Corbishley says:

      Thanks Jesusan. You may be able to source it in a Middle Eastern or Kosher store if there’s one near you. It’s sometimes called pomegranate syrup.
      Alternatively there are a couple of ways you can make it at home (sourced from
      1. Squeeze the juice from a large pomegranate then boil the liquid until it has reduced to just two tablespoons.
      2. Take 750ml store-bought pomegranate juice, 100g sugar and 125ml lemon juice and simmer until reduced to 250ml.

      You make a good point actually, so I’ll add this bit to the bottom of the post – thanks!