Greek Recipes

Greek and Cypriot recipes

Kotopoulo Stifatho (Stifado): Chicken and Onion Stew

In Greek: κοτόπουλο στιφάδο, say: koh-TOH-poo-loh stee-FAH-thoh

Stifatho dishes are generally known for including boiler and/or pearl onions, wine, and a tomato sauce, and this recipe is no exception. The wonderful combination of spices (cinnamon, cloves, bay leaves) makes this a vibrant stew. The optional addition of cheese adds even more depth.

Chicken stifatho is commonly served with fried potatoes, a green salad, and crusty bread.

Chicken Stifatho (Stifado) - Chicken & Onion Stew

Chicken Stifatho (Stifado) – Chicken & Onion Stew

Cook Time: 1 hour, 45 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 45 minutes


  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 2 pounds of whole boiler or pearl onions, peeled
  • 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 chicken (around 4 pounds), cut into serving-sized pieces
  • 3-4 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
  • 2 pounds of ripe tomatoes, peeled and finely chopped or pulped in food processor (including juice)
  • 1 stick of cinnamon
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/2 cup of dry white wine or dry vermouth
  • 1 teaspoon of sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon of freshly ground pepper or a few peppercorns
  • .
  • 1/2 pound of kefalotyri cheese (or pecorino), cut in 1/2 inch cubes
  • 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil


In a skillet, sauté whole peeled onions in 2 tablespoons of oil, stirring constantly until lightly browned. Transfer onions to a colander to drain and discard oil.

In a stew pot, heat 2-3 tablespoons of oil over medium-high heat, add chicken pieces and turn frequently to brown on all sides. Add garlic slices and sauté for a minute or so more to brown (total about 10 minutes). Stir in sautéed boiler onions, chopped or pulped tomatoes (with their juice), wine, salt, pepper, and a bouquet garni with the cinnamon stick, cloves, and bay leaves.

Cover and simmer for 1 1/2 to 1 3/4 hours without stirring, until the only liquid remaining is the sauce. Discard bouquet garni.

OPTIONAL CHEESE: Toward the end of cooking time, heat 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil in a non-stick pan over medium-high heat and add cheese. Cook until browned on one side and, with a spatula to pull up the cheese where it may stick to the pan, turn and brown on the other. Discard the bouquet garni and add cheese to the completed stew, cover, and remove from heat. Allow to sit 10-15 minutes before serving to give the cheese time to melt.

Yield: 4 serving of Chicken Stifatho (Stifado)

Note: If using a blender or food processor to pulp the tomatoes, peeling is optional.

Prep time: Prep time depends on the time it takes to peel the onions.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *