Braised Chicken Thighs with Olives and Lemon

Olives and I haven’t always gotten along. They were definitely an acquired taste. I’m pretty sure it was the saltiness that deterred me all those year. Ironically that’s what I’ve come to love about olives these days.

I’m not exactly what triggered my change of heart, or even when it happened. And it started slowly. I gave olives a second chance. And, I actually kinda liked them….or at least I didn’t hate them. I started liking them more and more, and eventually I started seeking them out.

Braised Chicken Thighs with Olives and Lemon

And then, they came to me. Literally. A couple weeks ago Olives from Spain got in touch and asked me to join them at Spain’s Great Match, for an evening of Spanish wine, Spanish cheese, bites from some of New York’s best Spanish restaurants, and the real selling point, all the Spanish olives I could fit in my belly. I’m pretty sure this was fate rewarding me.


Spain’s Great Match was a delicious gathering of wine makers, food producers and restaurateurs to celebrate and pair together some of the great things Spain has to offer. Olives from Spain was in the midst of the action with Cooking Channel host and culinary expert Annie Sibonney.


One of the highlights of chatting with Annie was finding inspiration for cooking with olives. I love snacking on olives before dinner, and they’re always a must when I’m out for tapas, but I don’t cook with them nearly enough. And by “nearly enough”, what I mean is basically never. Just that one time when I made halibut with tapenade.


My inspiration lead me straight to Braised Chicken Thighs with Olives and Lemon. It’s a mixture of Mediterranean and Middle Eastern Flavors, with super tender pieces of chicken.

This dish uses my favorite cut of chicken – the thighs. Chicken thighs, in my opinion, are a totally underrated cut of meat. While I do live skin-on chicken thighs, this dish works best with a skinless pieces of meat. With thighs, you’re guaranteed meat that’s super flavorful, versatile and really inexpensive.

Braised Chicken Thighs with Olives and Lemon

There are a lot of ways to cook chicken thighs. And, because they’re not as lean as chicken breast, braising is always a really great option. The meat in this dish comes out moist, super tender and it practically falls off the bones. Then there’s the cooking liquid. So.much.flavor. As great as the chicken is, the sauce might just be what makes this dinner. It’s a combination of brininess from the olives, warmth and spice from the cinnamon and saffron, and a little acidity from some white wine to balance it out.

I recommend keeping this meal simple and serving the chicken with a side of couscous and greens.

Braised Chicken Thighs with Olives and Lemon

Braised Chicken Thighs with Olives and Lemon

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Yield: Serves 2-3


  • 6 medium skinless chicken thighs
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 3/4 cup dry white wine
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 bay leaves
  • pinch of saffron
  • 4 1-inch strips of lemon peel
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup green Spanish olives
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
  • salt and fresh ground pepper


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Season both sides of the chicken thighs with salt and pepper. Add the olive oil to a Dutch oven or heavy bottomed pot, and heat over medium-high heat. Add the chicken thighs, working in batches if necessary, and cook until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Flip the chicken and cook until the other side is browned, about another 5 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a plate.

Reduce the heat to medium. Add the onion, season with a pinch of salt and pepper, stir to coat with the oil and cook until soft and fragrant, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic cloves and cook for a minute more. Pour in the wine, and stir to release the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Cook until the wine is almost all the way reduced. Stir in the thyme, cinnamon stick, bay leaves, saffron, lemon peel, lemon juice, chicken stock and olives. Bring to a boil. Return the chicken to the pan, then transfer to the oven. Cook for 50-55 minutes, until the chicken is tender and the internal temperature is 165 degrees.

Remove the chicken from the oven. Divide the meat between plates, top with sauce from the pan and fresh chopped cilantro, and serve immediately.

To learn more about olives and to get more delicious recipes follow the Olives from Spain on Facebook, Pinterest and YouTube.


Follow The Corner Kitchen on Bloglovin’ or by email!

I love hearing from you…keep in touch on FacebookTwitterPinterest and Instagram!

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post written on behalf of Olives from Spain. I received complimentary entry to the event and was compensated for recipe development. I work with brands that I enjoy and use, and, as always, all opinions are 100% my own.


Top 10 Essentials to Buy at Aldi

October 20, 2014

For a long time one of my biggest frustration with living in New York City was the cost of living. In particular, groceries. Somewhere along the way I found a happy medium between feeling constantly annoyed by overpriced grocery stores/lack of inexpensive options and accepting it. Mostly because I didn’t have a choice. It’s a […]

Continue reading→

Weekend Things

October 19, 2014
Weekend Things + pumpkins

Hi, friends! It’s kind of hard to believe that last week on Sunday morning I was paddling around Safety Harbor in Florida, making friends with manatees and reveling in the 80-degree sunshine. This morning I’m reaching for a sweater.   * i’m finally reading this book, and I cannot put it down! It is soooooo […]

Continue reading→

Harissa Roasted Green Beans

October 16, 2014
Harissa Roasted Green Beans

It was totally unplanned, but apparently I’m on a side dish kick this week. I love green beans, especially Roasted Green Beans, though I don’t make them nearly enough. A while ago when L and I were shopping for dinner groceries I suggested green beans. He claimed mentioned he didn’t like them. What’s not to […]

Continue reading→

The Creamiest Mashed Potatoes Ever!

October 14, 2014
The Creamiest Mashed Potatoes Ever | #sidedish #thanksgiving

If there was ever a side dish that could also be classified as an ultimate comfort food, it’s Mashed Potatoes! They’re a classic and ultra comforting dish that can run the gamut from rustic to luxurious, decadent and refined. And, let’s not forget they’re a total Thanksgiving essential. <– Yep, I went there. It’s on my mind […]

Continue reading→

Weekend Things

October 12, 2014
Weekend Things |

Hello from sunny Florida! We’re spending the weekend in and around Tampa for a friend’s wedding. In addition to tearing up the dance floor, we also managed to take advantage of outdoor lap pools (I really need to live in a place where these exist!), running near the water and some solid beach time. It […]

Continue reading→

Pumpkin Waffles

October 9, 2014
Pumpkin Waffles

I made these waffles a few weekends ago before going apple picking. Because really, is there anything that screams ‘all the fall things‘ more than big plate of Pumpkin Waffles followed by an afternoon roaming an orchard filling a sack with 25 pounds of apples, and snacking on cider donuts. The answer is no. Absolutely, […]

Continue reading→

Creamy Tomato Soup with Multigrain Croutons

October 7, 2014
This Creamy Tomato Soup is like a warm, velvety hug that you don

I think we’ve seen the last of the 80 degree days, and that chill that’s been in the air is here to stay for a while. I suppose it’s inevitable.  Bring it on. Oh, and by it, I mean cozy comfort foods. Instead throwing on a scarf or sweater to warm up, I’ll be swaddling myself […]

Continue reading→

Weekend Things

October 5, 2014
eat well

{via} Hi friends! I’ve been fighting this nasty cold since the middle of last week, and I cannot shake it. It started as an awful sore throat, moved into my head, then down to my chest and by Friday by voice was nearly gone and the sore throat was back. Ugh. The past few months […]

Continue reading→

Tunisian Lamb Meatballs

October 3, 2014
Tunisian Lamb Meatballs are filled with fragrant spices and served with a cinnamon and saffron infused tomato sauce! | #meatballs

Aside from apple picking, these lamb meatballs were at the top of my priority list last weekend. And, guess what, they’re at the top of this weekend’s list too. I just want to keep eating them again and again and again! I bet these meatballs are like none you’ve had before. These little balls of […]

Continue reading→