Moghrabieh

4.98 from 39 votes

Moghrabieh is a traditional Lebanese stew and is a firm family favorite. High in protein, this hearty, healthy stew is wonderfully spiced and full of flavor

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This traditional Lebanese Moghrabieh stew is the perfect comfort food! Made with a spiced chicken broth this hearty couscous stew is seasoned with warming spices. Served as a main or appetizer, it’s a full, well balanced meal that the whole family will love!

Chicken moghrabieh in a large bowl with chickpeas on top

What is mograbieh

Mograbieh is the name of this dish as well as the couscous-like pearls that are used in it. Mograbieh pearls are made from wheat semolina and you buy them dried and boil them until tender. They are known as Lebanese couscous as they resemble couscous in shape and texture. If you can’t find mograbieh pearls, you can substitute them with couscous.

The Mograbieh stew is made with these semolina pearls, chicken, chickpeas, onions and spices. Beef is also a popular protein.

How do you make mograbieh

To make the spiced chicken broth

Sear the chicken thighs in butter in a large pot with the onions until they are browned on both sides.

Add the spices to the pot along with the water and simmer. Halfway through simmering, skim any fat that rises to the surface.

Remove the chicken thighs from the pot, shred it and return to the pot.

Process shots to show how to cook the chicken broth

To make the moghabrieh

Add the moghrabieh to a pot with the butter and season. Cover with the water and boil until soft.

Serve the warm moghrabieh with a couple of the ladles of the spicy chicken broth.

Process shots to show how to cook the mograbieh/couscous

Tips for making mograbieh

  1. Keep the couscous separate from the broth. It’s traditional to serve them separately like you would serve spaghetti with marinara separately. This helps to control portions and also keeps the couscous from getting too soggy.
  2. Use chicken thighs in this recipe. They have much more flavor compared to breasts as they have a higher fat content. Use organic chicken if you can.
  3. Make the chicken broth in a heavy bottomed pot or dutch oven. Heavy bottomed pans distribute the heat more evenly so that you don’t get hotspots which can burn the bottom of the broth.

Frequently asked questions

Can you make this with beef?

Yes! If you prefer, you can make this with stew beef. Sear the beef, as you do with the chicken in this recipe to help lock in the flavors. You can also make this dish with lamb in the same way.

Can you make it ahead of time?

You can make the chicken broth ahead of time and keep it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days, you can just reheat it on the stovetop to serve. It is best to make the moghrabieh pearls just before they are ready to be served. They are very absorbent and will soak up any liquid.

Where do you buy moghrabieh?

Moghrabieh is easily found in Middle Eastern stores if you have one near you. It can be found in superstores too; it is often sold as giant couscous or Lebanese couscous. You can also buy it online.

Spoon inside bowl of chicken moghrabieh

I love this hearty stew from my childhood and I so enjoy serving it to my family! It’s so comforting and filling and the spices really make it come alive!

More Lebanese Recipes

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Moghrabieh

Moghrabieh is a traditional Lebanese stew and is a firm family favorite. High in protein, this hearty, healthy stew is wonderfully spiced and full of flavor
5 from 39 votes
Servings 6 servings
Course Main Course
Calories 841
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Total Time 1 hr 15 mins

Ingredients
  

Spiced Chicken Broth

  • 2 pounds chicken thighs
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons butter divided
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 1 teaspoon caraway divided
  • 1 teaspoon 7 spice
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 15-ounce cans chickpeas rinsed, drained

Moghabrieh

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 cups dry moghrabieh couscous
  • ½ teaspoons salt
  • ½ teaspoon caraway

Instructions

Spiced Chicken Broth

  • Heat 2 tablespoons of butter in a large pot or Dutch oven. Pat the chicken thighs dry using a paper towel. Season with salt and pepper and place the chicken on the melted butter in the pot. Add the onions on top and allow the chicken to sear for 3-4 minutes until lightly browned.
  • Flip the chicken over and sear the other side for another 3-4 minutes. Add the spices, bay leaves and cinnamon stick on top of the chicken and onions. Cover everything with 6 cups of water, bring to a boil and then simmer for 15 minutes. Skim any fat that rises to the top and add the drained chickpeas. Cook for 15 more minutes.
  • Remove the chicken thighs from the cooked broth, shred it using your hands or two forks, then return to the pot.

Moghabrieh

  • Heat the butter in a medium pot. Add the dry moghrabieh and season salt and caraway. Cover with 3 cups of water, bring to a boil and simmer for 20 minutes, until tender. Remove from heat and fluff with a fork.
  • Serve the moghrabieh warm with a couple ladles of the chicken broth. Garnish with parsley, if desired.

Nutrition

Calories: 841kcal, Carbohydrates: 86g, Protein: 45g, Fat: 35g, Saturated Fat: 11g, Cholesterol: 163mg, Sodium: 576mg, Potassium: 850mg, Fiber: 15g, Sugar: 8g, Vitamin A: 430IU, Vitamin C: 3mg, Calcium: 108mg, Iron: 6mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate. It will vary based on cooking method and specific ingredients used.

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Chicken moghrabieh in a large bowl with chickpeas on top

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Comments

  1. Delicious!! Made this with my daughter because she wanted to learn how. Followed the recipe exactly and it was very easy to make! Thank you !

  2. This is delicious! perfect dish to make on a snowy day, like today! Thank You for taking time and giving us options on the recipe for a larger quantity! I highly recommend you guys making this dish. It won’t disappoint!

  3. To make this a vegetarian dish, Can this be made using store bought vegetable stock that is enhanced by the recipes spices?

    1. I have yet to try that, but that may change the flavor profile slightly. Let me know how it goes if you do give it a try!

  4. Made this today. I love the traditional flavors of this dish. I didn’t change anything. It’s perfect.

  5. This one is easy, tasty and a new favorite! Made as instructed, but I did swap out the moghrabieh couscous for Israeli; my store didn’t have moghrabieh unfortunately. I also added a squeeze of fresh lemon to brighten it up. Definitely will be making this again.

  6. I made the recipe yesterday, it was very good and easy to make.
    I reduce the broth from 6 to 4 cups. I didn’t have moghrabieh, so I used organic red quinoa instead. I had just cooked chickpeas in my instant pot this week, so used 250 g cooked chickpeas in place of the 2 cans. I added 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground cumin seeds.
    I will make the recipe again.