Lemon-Roasted Chicken with Olive Couscous

Total Time

Prep: 20 min. Bake: 1-1/2 hours + standing


8 servings (4 cups couscous)

Updated: Sep. 13, 2023
If you can find preserved lemons, use them instead of the plain lemons for an even more authentic flavor in this North African-inspired recipe. —David Feder, Buffalo Grove, Illinois
Lemon-Roasted Chicken with Olive Couscous Recipe photo by Taste of Home


  • 1 roasting chicken (5 to 6 pounds)
  • 1 medium lemon, thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds, crushed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup uncooked whole wheat couscous
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped pitted green olives
  • 1 tablespoon pine nuts


  1. Place chicken on a rack in a shallow roasting pan, breast side up.
  2. Tuck wings under chicken; tie drumsticks together.
  3. With fingers, carefully loosen skin from chicken breast; place lemon slices and fennel under the skin. Secure skin to underside of breast with toothpicks. Rub skin with oil; sprinkle with pepper and salt.
  4. Roast at 350° for 1-1/2 to 2 hours or until a thermometer inserted in thigh reads 180°, basting occasionally with pan drippings. Remove chicken from the oven; cover loosely with foil and let stand for 15 minutes before carving.
  5. Meanwhile, prepare couscous according to package directions, adding thyme and salt to water before heating. Stir in olives and pine nuts during the last minute of cooking. Serve with chicken.

Nutrition Facts

7 ounces cooked chicken with 1/2 cup couscous: 456 calories, 24g fat (6g saturated fat), 112mg cholesterol, 435mg sodium, 20g carbohydrate (1g sugars, 3g fiber), 39g protein.