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Cast Iron Chicken Fonio Bake

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November 23, 2021 by Amethyst Ganaway

One pot meals are always a hit— clean up is easier, and the flavors really get to build as everything cooks together. In this recipe, raw fonio cooks in the juices of the chicken thighs, veggies, and soup, resulting in a comforting, casserole-type dish that’s a bit reminiscent of Thanksgiving stuffing, but lighter. This recipe is perfect for those busy winter weeknights where dinner needs to be a) fast and b) delicious.


  • bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
  • tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 ½  teaspoons kosher salt
  • teaspoon ground black pepper
  • cloves garlic, sliced
  • large carrot, sliced (about 1 cup)
  • stalks celery, sliced
  • small heads of chopped fresh broccoli (about 2 cups)
  • 1 ½  cups Yolélé Fonio
  • cans organic low-sodium cream of mushroom soup
  • can organic low-sodium cream of chicken soup
  • ¼  cup chicken or vegetable stock
  • ½  cup fresh chopped parsley


  • 01 .  

    Preheat the oven to 375℉.

  • 02 .  

    Pat chicken thighs dry with a paper towel, and in a bowl, rub them with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Heat a 12” cast iron skillet over medium-high heat for about 2-3 minutes. Carefully add chicken and sear skin side down for 5-6 minutes or until golden brown. Flip and sear the other side for an additional 4-5 minutes, adding more olive oil as needed. Reduce heat to medium, remove chicken and set aside.

  • 03 .  

    Add garlic, carrots, celery, and broccoli, stirring often. Cook for about 3-5 minutes, or until vegetables begin to soften and pick up color from the pan. Stir in dry fonio and cook for about one minute.

  • 04 .  

    Stir in soups and stock. Mix well and let simmer for 2 minutes. Turn heat off and nestle the seared thighs (skin side up) in the fonio and vegetable mixture. Add ¼ cup of chopped fresh parsley.

  • 05 .  

    Cover and bake in the oven at 375℉ for about 45 minutes, or until chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165℉. When done, there should be a bit of a crust on the edges and the fonio shouldn’t be soupy. If needed, remove cover and add back to the oven in 3-5 minute increments until desired consistency is achieved. Let cool for 5 minutes before topping with the remaining fresh parsley before serving.