This Greek-inspired Cinnamon Chicken Stew is one of the coziest weeknight dinners! Seared chicken thighs simmer in a rich tomato sauce until they’re fall-apart tender. Served over pasta or rice for a easy, flavorful meal in less than 45 minutes.
How to Make Cinnamon Chicken Stew
Classic Greek Chicken Kapama is traditionally made by braising a whole chicken in a fragrant tomato sauce for several hours until it’s falling off the bone. For this weeknight-friendly version, I swapped in boneless, skinless chicken thighs. Still super flavorful, but ready in a fraction of the time.
You’ll want to start by taking the chicken thighs out of the package and sprinkling them with kosher salt. Let that sit for about 10 minutes. This is going to allow the salt to displace some of the water in the chicken, making it even more tender and flavorful.
Next, rub ground cinnamon on both sides of each thigh. Sear them in a bit of olive oil to allow the cinnamon to bloom and release it’s flavor. Take the chicken out of the pan and make the tomato sauce.
The sauce is simple: just sauté an onion and a few garlic cloves until fragrant. Add your seasonings, tomato paste and a just a little sugar to enhance the flavor of the tomato. Deglaze the pan with red wine and pour in a can of crushed tomatoes. Bring everything back up to a boil before nestling in those seared chicken thighs. Let everything simmer over low heat for about half an hour until the sauce is thick and chicken is falling apart.
What to Serve with Cinnamon Chicken
While the cinnamon chicken simmers, I like to get a pot of water boiling for pasta. The shape you see in the photos is called cavatelli and it does a wonderful job of scooping up thick sauces. Other short-cut pastas like orzo, fusili and orecchiette would also work well. Whatever shape you choose, make sure to add plenty of salt to the water and immediately toss the pasta with olive oil after draining to prevent it from clumping.
If you’re looking for a healthier option, brown or white rice would also go nicely with Cinnamon Stewed Chicken!.
Also, this is one of those recipes that tastes even better once the flavors have a chance to meld, so it’s a great make-ahead meal. If you have any leftovers, simply refrigerate them in an airtight container for up to 4 days. Reheat over low heat in a sauce pan with a little chicken broth until warmed through. The microwave also works if you’re in a hurry, but I find it messes with the texture a bit.
More Chicken Recipes to Try:
- One Skillet Pesto Chicken and Orzo
- Grilled Pesto Chicken Wraps
- Burst Cherry Tomato Chicken and Rice Skillet
- Cornmeal Crusted Chicken Salad