So I know we have this thing in like, three days… this day where we eat a ton of food, but the thing is? We still have three days. Three whole days!!

Sweet and Sticky Pomegranate Chicken I

Says my impatient inner five-year old.

And apparently we need to do normal things like eat actual food for meals while we discuss gravy and mashed potatoes and stuffing and whatnot. I mean, do we really need to eat dinner tonight? I, for one, should probably not eat dinner, and should probably not eat anything for the next three days given the amount of food I consumed over the weekend and given the amount of food I plan on consuming on Thursday, but still… I guess dinner would be a good idea. Maybe lunch too. Breakfast? Probably something green and leafy. Probably something light.

Probably won’t happen. Aye yi yi.

Sweet and Sticky Pomegranate Chicken I

But this totally can happen. I know it looks semi-complicated but I promise it isn’t. And I know you’re busy making lists and fighting with other consumers at your local grocery store and figuring out just where to store that giant turkey and maybe doing things like making three apple pies for your big family, or hey – maybe just yourself, maybe you just really like pie – but I’m confident that you can take 30 minutes or so and make dinner tonight.

Hear that? I’m confident that YOU can. Not sure about me. I may just eat cookies for dinner because I’m going to be in serious withdrawal.

I’m actually fearful.

Sweet and Sticky Pomegranate Chicken I

I modified one of my favorite chicken recipes – these sticky thai chicken wings – to incorporate my autumn fruit obsession. You can use boneless chicken breasts or wings or whatever you’d like, but you can see that I used some chicken legs because they are just so delicious. And you make it all in one skillet! It can easily be served as an appetizer but is also reeeeeeeallly good with jasmine rice. Man I love jasmine rice. It’s just so… jasminey.

Sweet and Sticky Pomegranate Chicken I


Sweet and Sticky Pomegranate Chicken

Yield: serves 2-4

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes


2 pounds chicken wings or legs
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup sweet chili sauce
1/3 cup pomegranate juice
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 tablespoon soy sauce
1 lime, juiced
3 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
pomegranate arils for garnish
freshly chopped parsley for garnish


Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. IN a large measuring cup or bowl, mix together chili sauce, pom juice, soy sauce, vinegar, lime juice, brown sugar and garlic.

Heat a large oven-safe skillet over medium-high heat and add olive oil. Season chicken with salt and pepper, then place in the skillet and sear on each side until deeply golden and brown, about 2 minutes per side. Remove chicken and place on a plate, turning heat in the skillet down to medium-low. Pour in pomegranate juice mix and whisk, allowing the sauce to bubble and simmer for 1-2 minutes. Place chicken back in the skillet and turn and toss to coat. Bake for 20-25 minutes. Remove chicken and serve with chopped parsley and pomegranate arils.

Sweet and Sticky Pomegranate Chicken I

And there I go being unintentionally Christmasy again, but eh, ’tis the season, right?

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78 Responses to “Sweet and Sticky Pomegranate Chicken.”

  1. #
    Katie — November 28, 2012 @ 8:47 pm

    Can this be made with chicken thighs? If so, should the times be adjusted at all?


  2. #
    Jamie — November 29, 2012 @ 11:17 am

    This was delicious! Thank you!


  3. #
    Mandy — December 11, 2012 @ 7:53 am

    Just saw this recipe, and I’m looking to make something nice to for my boyfriend this weekend, and I’m just wondering if this can be done without the baking – I don’t have an oven!


  4. #
    Emilie — January 2, 2013 @ 4:39 pm

    I made this with boneless skinless breasts (because I wasn’t paying attention to the recipe when making my shopping list) and it turned out great! Another good chicken meal for the books.


  5. #
    Jamie — January 14, 2013 @ 5:02 pm

    This looks delicious!

    Question though, I don’t own a skillet. Could you suggest an alternative cooking method?



  6. #
    Katie — January 30, 2013 @ 10:04 am

    Jessica, just had to thank you for this recipe, my family loved it! But, the funny thing is my kids (6 and 7) kept saying, “This is spicy!”, taking another bite, drinking half a glass of milk, saying “this is spicy!”, taking another bite, drinking the rest of their glass of milk, filling up their glass of milk, and then repeating the process. Both of them had seconds and thirds and drank at least half a gallon of milk combined. It was a tad spicier than I thought it would be but in a good way. I doubled the sauce since I was using probably 3 or more pounds of chicken breast that I cut up into bite size pieces before coating them with a little flour, browning them in the skillet and then baking them on a baking sheet coated in the sauce that I simmered in the skillet for 5-10 minutes. I even added a spoonful of peanut butter, some ginger and a squeeze of honey to the sauce and when I tasted it it didn’t taste as spicy as it did when eating the dish. Either way it was delicious and I think the kids will be fighting over the leftovers which will be a be a perfect meal to warm us up after we play in the snow on our snow day. Thanks again for this wonderful recipe, the numerous other ones that I have tried and the plethora of ones that are on my “to try” list!


  7. #
    blanca indig — February 17, 2013 @ 1:06 pm

    was wondering if i could substitute rice vinegar with rice wine vinegar? cant find rice wine in my grocery strore


    • mark — March 24th, 2013 @ 7:14 pm

      I add a splash (OK, maybe more) of Mirin or Sake w/ the rice vinegar.
      This recipe is awesome!


  8. #
    wholesome kids — December 10, 2013 @ 6:30 pm

    Ok, after looking at this recipe I went and bought pomegranate juice. Guess what we’re having for dinner tonight?


  9. #
    Lteefaw — March 20, 2014 @ 10:21 pm

    Made this tonight and it’s a keeper!!


  10. #
    Danielle Doerr — May 12, 2014 @ 9:02 pm

    I made this tonight and it was absolutely DELICIOUS! I substituted the rice wine vinegar for dry, white wine and I think next time I’ll use less chili sauce. I served these chicken legs with cilantro-lime rice (like Chipotle has!) and I’ll definitely be making them again!


  11. #
    Julie — February 23, 2015 @ 3:33 pm

    Had this one saved in Paprika for quite a while, finally got around to making it with my nine year old who loves to help. It was surprisingly popular with this picky kid. We used chicken breast instead of the wings, and loved it over rice. Great recipe!



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