Mixed-Grain Pilaf with Chicken

mixed grain pilaf with chicken full frame
Photo: Bobbi Lin

Don't let rice have all the pilaf fun! Try this combination of wheat berries and millet studded with pomegranates, almonds, and golden raisins. Juicy chicken thighs make it substantial enough for supper.


  • 2 cups wheat berries

  • 8 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

  • 2 tablespoons ghee

  • 2 small onions, finely chopped

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 4 cups homemade or store-bought low-sodium chicken stock

  • 1 cup millet

  • ¾ cup golden raisins, chopped

  • 1 cup plain whole-milk Greek yogurt or labneh

  • ¾ cup peeled, diced cucumber

  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint

  • Juice of 1/2 lemon

  • 1 cup flat-leaf parsley sprigs, chopped

  • 1 cup pomegranate seeds

  • ¾ cup slivered almonds, toasted


  1. Soak wheat berries in water overnight. Alternatively, bring wheat berries and enough water to cover by 2 inches to a boil in a medium saucepan. Cover, remove from heat, and let stand 1 hour. Drain and set aside.

  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Season chicken with salt and pepper. In a large, ovenproof braiser, heat ghee over medium-high. Add chicken, skin-side down, and cook until deep golden brown, about 8 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Drain all but 1/4 cup fat from pot.

  3. Reduce heat to medium, add onions and garlic, and cook until soft and translucent, about 12 minutes. Add reserved wheat berries and cook, stirring, about 3 minutes. Add stock; season with salt and pepper. Bring mixture to a boil, cover, and transfer to oven. Cook for 45 minutes.

  4. Carefully remove pot from oven and stir in millet and raisins. Place chicken, skin-side up, in pot. Cover, return to oven, and cook until grains are tender and liquid has evaporated, 45 to 55 minutes.

  5. In a small bowl, combine yogurt, cucumber, mint, and lemon juice; season with salt and pepper.

  6. Remove pilaf from oven and sprinkle with parsley, pomegranate seeds, and almonds. Serve with yogurt sauce.

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