Mediterranean Chicken with Saffron

By March 21, 2017 December 24th, 2019 Chicken & Turkey, Gluten Free, Main Dish, Recipes

Let me announce my new favorite way to eat chicken. Its beauty comes from the mixture of vegetables and sauce infused with aromatic saffron.

Mediterranean Chicken with SaffronSaffron is one of the most delicious and powerful foods in nature.  It’s known to reduce cravings, build vitality and provide stable mood and energy.  It offers powerful support for the nervous system.  I love the taste.  Saffron is used extensively in dishes from the Iberian Peninsula.

In the 15th and 16th centuries Spain and Portugal launched great explorations in search of spices.  They turned up sweet and hot peppers, tomatoes, beans, potatoes, vanilla, avocados and chocolate from the New World.  The kitchens of Europe were revolutionized by these discoveries.  The flavor profile of Mediterranean Cuisine emphasizes big bold flavors full of garlic, tomatoes, olive oil, peppers and spices.

I use sweet red peppers, but if you can find yellow peppers, combine them with the red peppers for a more colorful dish.

Start by sauting the peppers, zucchini, onions and garlic in olive oil.  Then add tomatoes and saffron to create the aromatic sauce.

Mediterranean Chicken and Saffron

Mediterranean Chicken with Saffron

I cut the chicken breast in half horizontally to cook quickly and evenly in grass fed butter.  This is done in a separate pan.  Sorry you have 2 pans to clean up but it makes a more flavorful dish.

Once the chicken is browned the pan is deglazed with either white wine or stock and combined with the saffron flavored vegetables..  The wine gives the dish a slightly acidic taste which balances the tomatoes, but if it’s not part of your diet the stock is fine.

I use grass fed butter to cook the chicken because I love the taste and it browns the chicken nicely.  For years we were told butter was bad for us but now we know better.  As it turns out the fatty acids in butter have major health benefits.(1). Grass fed butter is high in the fatty acid CLA (conjugated linoleic acid). It can help with fat loss (2).   If butter isn’t part of you diet, saute the chicken in ghee or olive oil.  If using olive oil keep the temperature on low to prevent the oil from oxidizing.

Mediterranean Chicken with Saffron

The complex flavors and many vegetables in this dish make it incredibly satisfying.  You won’t need to eat more than 4 ounces of chicken here, which is enough.  I always aim for my plate to be 70% vegetables.  Having lots of good tasting veggies to go along with your protein makes it to stay nourished.

I have served this dish with Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes and/or Sauteed Spinach and Radicchio.  It’s also good with Marinated Swiss Chard and/or Roasted Sweet Potatoes.  Any green vegetables are perfect.  Rice or quinoa is also nice.

Mediterranean Chicken with Saffron

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Mediterranean Chicken with Saffron

Mediterranean Chicken with Saffron

  • Author: Ingrid DeHart -
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 4 1x


A beautiful mixture of chicken and vegetables in a tomato sauce infused with aromatic saffron.


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cups cored seeded sweet red and/or yellow peppers, cut into thin strips
  • 1 cup zucchini, cut into thick julienne, a French fry shape
  • 1 cup thinly sliced onions
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic
  • Celtic sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 1 cup canned crushed tomatoes
  • 1 large pinch of saffron threads, about ¼ teaspoon
  • 2 tablespoons butter or ghee
  • 1 pound organic, free range boneless skinless chicken breasts, (2 breasts)
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped shallots
  • ¼ cup dry white wine (optional add more broth if leaving out)
  • ¼ cup organic chicken broth
  • 4 tablespoons finely chopped parsley


  1. Heat the oil over medium low heat in a large skillet.
  2. Add the peppers, onions, zucchini, garlic, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, about 3 minutes or until beginning to soften.
  3. Add the tomatoes and saffron. Cover and simmer 10 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, cut the 2 chicken breasts in half horizontally, to get 4 pieces. Season both sides of the chicken with salt and pepper
  5. Melt the butter in a heavy sauté pan large enough to hold the chicken breasts in one layer or do it in two batches.
  6. Cook over medium heat until lightly browned, about 4 minutes. Turn the pieces and cook about 3 minutes more or until done. Do not overcook. Transfer the chicken to a warm platter and keep it warm.
  7. Add the shallots to the pan and cook until wilted, 30 seconds. Do not brown.
  8. Pour in the wine (or broth) and scrape the bottom with a wooden spatula to dissolve any brown particles that may cling to the bottom of the pan.
  9. Simmer until the wine is reduced by half.
  10. Add the chicken broth. Let cook until it is reduced by half.
  11. Add the chicken breasts and any liquid that may have accumulated on the plate.
  12. Add the pepper and tomato mixture. Stir to coat the chicken with the vegetables.
  13. Bring to a simmer to heat up the chicken and add the parsley.
  14. Serve
  • Prep Time: 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 30 mins
  • Category: Chicken, Paleo, Gluten Free, Healthy
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean


Mediterranean Chicken with SaffronEnjoy the recipe.  If you like it, make it three times over the next few weeks, you will have it memorized and it will be easy. You won’t even need to check the directions.  Please leave me a comment below.  I would love to hear how you like these recipes.


Much love,











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