Chicken Fesenjoon in the Slow Cooker

Pomegranate + walnut + chicken + rice = happy husband.

Fesenjoon is one of those dishes that takes forever to make.  But it is perfectly suited for making in the slow cooker, which is exactly what I did on Christmas day.  We wanted to go out during the day, but I had planned on making Fesenjoon, so I thought I would be left at home, cooking.  Instead, I redesigned the dish so that I could get it into the slow cooker and let if cook while we enjoyed time together.  Perfect!


Unlike most of my slow cooker recipes, this does take a little prep work.  I ground the walnuts the night before, just a few batches in the spice grinder did the trick.

fesenjoon1 fesenjoon2

And I also browned the chicken before putting it in the crock pot.

Chicken Fesenjoon in the Slow Cooker

2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breast (locally grown)

1 Tbsp vegetable oil

1 medium onion, chopped

2 cups walnuts, ground

1/3 cup water

2 Tbsp lemon juice

1/2 cup pomegranate molasses (if you cannot fined pomegranate molasses, eliminate the next 1/2 cup of water and just use 2 cups of pomegranate juice instead of 1 cup)

1/2 cup water

1 cup pomegranate juice

1 Tbsp tomato paste

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 Tbsp sugar


Brown the chicken and set aside.

Spread the oil in the bottom of the slow cooker.  Add the onions and walnuts. Mix together.


Add the 1/3 cup water and mix together til it forms a paste.


Sir in the lemon juice, pomegranate molasses, water, pomegranate juice and tomato paste.  Season with salt and pepper.  Mix in the sugar.


Add the chicken.


Cook on high for 4 – 5 hours, or low for 8 – 9 hours.  Fesenjoon should be stew-like, if it seems too watery, take the lid off for the last hour (at high, 2 hours at low) or so of cooking.  Break up the chicken with a wooden spoon. Taste and adjust the seasoning or sugar.


Serve over rice.  Enjoy!


Serves 4 – 6


19 Comments Add yours

  1. this looks really good. can it be done without the nuts(hubby cant have) and still taste as good?


    1. Hmm, it would greatly affect the texture. There are other pomegranate chicken recipes; they are not the same, but if you are interested I can find them for you.


      1. If you wanted to try this without the walnuts, I think I would reduce the liquid by about 20% or so.


  2. ames says:

    this looks great! do you think y


  3. ames says:

    this looks great do you think i might use a different oil?


    1. Safflower or sunflower, perhaps even grapeseed would all work. You don’t want an oil with a strong flavor.


  4. Sarah says:

    Thank you for this recipe! Third time I’ve made it for my Persian husband and we both like it more than the traditional recipe book version I’ve been making for years-and it’s so so much easier! Cheers!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am so happy you like it!


  5. katherine says:

    Hi Andrea, I took the lid off for the last hour and all my sauce/liquid evaporated. I would like to make just the sauce to accompany the chicken because now the dish has become a little too dry as a result. Can you please advice on how to just make the sauce for this dish? Your help will be greatly appreciated!


    1. The sauce is ok thick, but non-existent is no good. Here’s what I would do, remove the chicken (so as not to overcook it) and put the remaining nuts (your dried sauce into a saucepan) Add pomegranate juice and simmer it to get the flavors to blend. Taste it for seasoning. Not sure how long this would take or how much to use, start with a cup of juice and play it by ear, adding more if that doesn’t look like enough.
      If you are really strapped and don’t have pomegranate juice, but perhaps still have some pomegranate molasses, you could try using chicken stock/broth and a couple of tablespoons of the molasses.
      Let me know what you try and how it works.
      I’ve never had the problem of not enough sauce, so I am guessing a little here.


      1. Katherine says:

        Hi Andrea! Thank you so much for your reply! I’ve already shredded the chicken with my spatula and placed it in a container as it is already cooked. How would you suggest I make the sauce separately at this point now that the dried sauce had already been absorbed in the chicken? I have more pomegranate juice and pomegranate molasses and walnuts at home to make a new sauce.


      2. Hmmm, I think I would then just add more juice when heating it up. All the other favors should be there. Put it all in a pot on the stove, add more juice to get a stew-like consistency and heat it over a medium-low flame so a not to dry it up again


  6. katherine says:

    Hi Andrea! I took the lid off for the last hour because I thought I had too much liquid but after pulling the chicken apart I realized that I was left with none. I desperately need to make the sauce/gravy to accompany this dish because the chicken will be too dry without it. Can you please advice on how to just make the sauce for this dish. Thank you!!!


  7. Priya says:

    Wow! I’m never making this without a slow cooker again. This was amazing!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Christina says:

    Thank you for the recipe. I followed the instructions using pomegranate molasses but also added few extra tbsp of sugar to sweeten the stew a bit more. I had used pure pomegranate juice in the ingredients. It was delicious and great to use the slow cooker.


Let me know what you think of this post, and if you try the recipe, please let me know how it was and any suggestions you have. Thanks, Andrea

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