These paleo cranberry apple chicken thighs with rosemary are such a delicious paleo fall recipe. With organic cranberry juice and dried cranberries, these paleo cranberry apple chicken thighs are an easy and quick paleo dinner that’s elegant enough for company.
The Plight of the Food Blogger
“I’m going to order fresh cranberries online. How many pounds do you want?”
“Cheryl, wait, it’s August…”
Being a food blogger means working ahead of the season to make sure you’ve got plenty of delicious, festive dishes queued up, stocking up on cans of pumpkin in June and Amazon Primeing little candy carrots for your double-decker carrot cake in January.
And it means calling every Kroger within a 25-mile radius in August looking for the ones who’d somehow, possibly have fresh cranberries.
Because, while I love a good paleo pumpkin spice latte and I’m mad about peppermint chocolate truffles, it’s cranberries that really call me.
Thing is, though, they don’t really call me back until early October. They’re beautifully seasonal and thrive in conditions that are not too easy to transplant. That means I have to summon some actual patience when it comes to the tart, jewel-colored berries. And while waiting so patiently (translation: not patiently at all), I found myself enrapt with the variations of the berry that are available all year long.
…And Why This Recipe’s Worth It.
See, there’s something to me about cranberry juice and dried cranberries that the fresh fruit simple can’t rival. A richness that the young, plump fruit lacks in favor of brightness and tartness. So when I was working on quick and simple dinner recipes for the fall, I absolutely had to include dried cranberries and cranberry juice for a seasonal flavor that’s so easy to love.
I mentally paired up my ingredients. Apples for a mild sweetness. Rosemary to perfume the dish with a heady, woody aroma. I based the recipe on my beloved bacon mushroom chicken thighs, and what resulted made everyone into instant fans.
Yep, these paleo cranberry apple chicken thighs are quick and easy, tender with beautifully crispy skin. Slightly and naturally sweet with a touch of tart, grounded with woody rosemary. Like my creamy Whole30 bacon mushroom chicken thighs, they’re easy enough for a weeknight dinner but elegant enough for company. You might just make them all fall long.
More Whole30 Chicken Recipes You Need in Your Life
- Whole30 Chicken Tenders (Paleo, Low Carb, Gluten Free)
- Creamy Whole30 Tuscan Chicken with Artichokes (Paleo)
- Whole30 Everything Bagel Chicken and Scallion “Cream Cheese” Sauce
- Chick-Fil-A Style Whole30 Chicken Nuggets Recipe
- Whole30 Marry Me Chicken (Paleo, Dairy Free)
- 4 large bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs approximately 6 ounces each
- salt to taste
- freshly cracked black pepper to taste
- 1 tablespoon ghee or olive oil
- 1 medium apple cored, sliced
- ⅓ cup Ocean Spray® Craisins® Original Dried Cranberries see Notes for Whole30
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- ⅔ cup Ocean Spray® 100% Juice Organic Cranberry Apple
- ⅓ cup chicken stock
- 5 sprigs fresh rosemary
- Cutting board
- Large oven-safe skillet
- pot holder
- Large plate
- Large wooden spoon or silicone spatula
- Preheat oven to 375° Fahrenheit. Place chicken thighs on cutting board. Season generously with salt and black pepper to taste, then flip chicken thighs over and season other side.
- Heat large, oven-safe skillet over medium-high heat. When pan is hot, add ghee. Continue warming pan until ghee is melted, swirling pan occasionally to move ghee around to coat.
- When ghee is melted, place seasoned chicken thighs in skillet, skin-side down. Place thighs so they can cook evenly without needing to be moved.
- Cook chicken thighs skin-side down, undisturbed, 7 minutes, or until skin-side is evenly browned and releases easily from pan. If skin sticks, continue cooking until skin releases easily.
- Once chicken thighs are ready, place skillet in preheated oven. Cook 13 minutes, or until internal temperature of chicken thighs reaches 160° Fahrenheit.
- When chicken thighs are ready, carefully remove skillet from oven and transfer chicken thighs to plate. Set plate aside to rest and return skillet to stovetop over medium-high heat. Note: use potholder from this point forward. Skillet will stay very hot.
- Place apple slices and Craisins in skillet. Cook 2 to 3 minutes or until apples are lightly golden-brown and just softened.
- Add garlic to skillet. Sauté garlic, stirring constantly, 30 to 60 seconds or until garlic is just fragrant.
- Add cranberry apple juice, chicken stock, and rosemary to skillet. Stir to incorporate, then increase heat to high and bring mixture to boil. Once mixture begins to boil gently, immediately reduce heat to low. Simmer 2 to 4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until sauce has reduced slightly.
- After simmering, taste sauce and add more salt and/or pepper if desired. Return chicken thighs to skillet and cover with spoonfuls of sauce. If needed, return skillet to low heat just until chicken is warmed-through, then serve chicken with desired sides and plenty of sauce.
- Cranberries: Use apple-juice-sweetened dried cranberries if you’re on a Whole30 round.
Number of total servings shown is approximate. Actual number of servings will depend on your preferred portion sizes.
Nutritional values shown are general guidelines and reflect information for 1 serving using the ingredients listed, not including any optional ingredients. Actual macros may vary slightly depending on specific brands and types of ingredients used.
To determine the weight of one serving, prepare the recipe as instructed. Weigh the finished recipe, then divide the weight of the finished recipe (not including the weight of the container the food is in) by the desired number of servings. Result will be the weight of one serving.