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Pomegranate chicken features juicy chicken thighs baked in a creamy Thai-flavored peanut sauce and served with coconut jasmine rice. It's a healthy, saucy, and satisfying complete meal that's ready in just over an hour!
Table of contents
If you like peanut sauce, you're going to love this pomegranate chicken! It's a delicious and incredibly satisfying Thai-inspired recipe featuring saucy baked chicken and sweet coconut rice studded with pomegranate seeds.
With minimal prep, it's an easy recipe that's perfect for weeknights. To make it, all you have to do is whisk together a quick peanut sauce and pour it over the chicken to marinate. While the chicken is baking, simmer the rice with coconut milk, then stir in some pomegranate seeds. Serve the chicken alongside the coconut rice and dig in!
It's one of those healthy mid-winter meals that's hearty and nourishing and feels sort of festive. The whole family will love it, and the leftovers taste great the next day!
Pomegranate chicken ingredients
This delicious pomegranate molasses chicken is made mostly with ingredients you'll likely find in your kitchen. Here's everything you need to make it:
- Peanut butter – natural peanut butter gives this dish a creamy taste and makes up the base of the flavorful sauce.
- Pomegranate molasses – pomegranate molasses has an intense sweet-tart flavor that adds a lot of dimension. If you've never tried it before, you're in for a treat!
- Soy sauce – for seasoning and saltiness.
- Red Thai curry paste – when choosing a curry paste, look for authentic Thai brands because they'll be the most flavorful. More mainstream North American curry pastes tend to be hot without much flavor.
- Honey – to sweeten up the sauce.
- Garlic and ginger – these aromatics are classic Thai ingredients and add lots of flavor and a bit of kick to the sauce.
- Boneless skinless chicken thighs – we use boneless skinless chicken thighs, but you can use boneless skinless chicken breasts if you prefer. While we like the ease of boneless chicken, you can also use bone-in and simply adjust the cooking time.
- Jasmine rice – this fluffy Thai rice is the perfect grain to soak up the sauce.
- Coconut milk – we always go for regular, full-fat coconut milk but you can use light.
- Fresh pomegranate seeds (technically called pomegranate arils) – for mixing into the coconut rice.
- pomegranate seeds, chopped peanuts, and cilantro – optional, for garnish.
How to make this pomegranate chicken recipe
This chicken with pomegranate sauce is a quick and easy meal to make. It's super satisfying with lots of sauce, and the leftovers taste great the next day. Here's how to make it in a few easy steps:
- Make the sauce by combining the peanut butter, pomegranate molasses, soy sauce, curry paste, honey, ginger, and garlic in a bowl.
- Place the chicken thighs into a baking dish, cover with half the sauce, and let it marinate for at least 30 minutes.
- Then, bake the chicken for about 40 minutes, adding the rest of the sauce halfway through.
- Make the coconut rice while the chicken is cooking. When the rice is done, let it sit for a few minutes and then stir in the pomegranate seeds.
- Serve the chicken alongside the rice, and top with more pomegranate seeds, chopped peanuts, and cilantro. Enjoy!
Full recipe instructions are in the recipe card below.
Where can I buy pomegranate molasses?
You can find pomegranate molasses along with other Middle Eastern foods at most grocery stores. Also, check out Middle Eastern markets or delis in your community. You can also buy it online. To make your own pomegranate molasses, simply simmer to reduce some pomegranate juice until it's thick and sticky.
How long do leftovers keep in the refrigerator?
Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 days. They taste great reheated the next day!
How long should I marinate the chicken?
We recommend marinating the chicken for a minimum of 30 minutes, and up to 8 hours in the fridge. If you have the time, 2+ hours will yield the best taste and texture.
What to serve with pomegranate chicken
Serve this recipe for pomegranate chicken with any kind of grain or grain substitute to soak up the delicious sauce. In the recipe, we make it with coconut jasmine rice, but you can make it with a different type of rice, quinoa, or cauliflower rice as a low-carb alternative.
Making pomegranate chicken for a crowd? Serve it family-style with a few other Thai dishes like our carrot noodle pad thai or Thai turkey lettuce wraps for a healthy and satisfying meal everyone will love!
More saucy chicken recipes
- ½ cup natural peanut butter
- ¼ cup pomegranate molasses (see notes)
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce (gluten-free soy sauce)
- 1 tablespoon EACH: Thai red curry paste and honey
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1 inch piece of ginger (peeled and minced)
- 2 lb boneless skinless chicken thighs
- 1 cup jasmine rice (rinsed)
- 1 cup coconut milk
- ¾ cup water
- 1 cup pomegranate seeds
- Optional toppings: pomegranate seeds, chopped peanuts, cilantro
- In a medium-sized bowl, whisk the peanut butter, pomegranate molasses, soy sauce, Thai red curry paste, honey, ginger, and garlic.½ cup natural peanut butter, ¼ cup pomegranate molasses, 2 tablespoons soy sauce, 1 tablespoon EACH: Thai red curry paste and honey, 2 cloves garlic, 1 inch piece of ginger
- Put the chicken thighs into a baking dish and pour half of the peanut butter sauce over the top. Mix it around so that it's coated well then set it aside on your counter to marinate for 30 minutes – or up to 8 hours in your fridge.2 lb boneless skinless chicken thighs
- Preheat your oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Put the chicken into the oven and let it bake for 20 minutes. Spread the rest of the sauce over the top of the chicken and bake it for another 20 minutes, until it is bubbling and the sauce is dark brown.
- While the chicken is baking, prepare the coconut rice. Place the jasmine rice, coconut milk, and water into a small pot and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to the lowest setting, cover, and cook for 12 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat and set it aside for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, stir the pomegranate seeds into the rice1 cup jasmine rice, 1 cup coconut milk, ¾ cup water, 1 cup pomegranate seeds
- Serve the chicken with the coconut rice and any or all of the optional toppings.Optional toppings: pomegranate seeds, chopped peanuts, cilantro
We have thoroughly tested this recipe for accuracy. However, individual results may vary. See our full recipe disclosure here.
This recipe is part of our Valentine's Day Dinner Ideas series.