Paul’s Venezuelan Chocolate Chile Chicken


  • 1 tablespoon  olive oil
  • chicken thighs, preferably organic
  • chicken drumsticks, preferably organic
  • large shallots, chopped finely
  • cloves garlic, chopped finely
  •   Juice and zest of 3 oranges
  •   One 14 ½-ounce can tomatoes, chopped
  • fresh red chiles, seeded and minced
  • 2 teaspoons  dried pure ground ancho chile (or any other dried mild chiles, ground in a spice grinder)
  • 1 tablespoon  coriander seeds
  • 1 tablespoon  dark muscovado sugar
  • 5 1/2 ounces  Venezuelan dark chocolate, chopped
  • 1/3 cup  cilantro leaves, torn coarsely

There are very many versions of chocolate chile chicken, but I chose to include this one as it’s fantastically quick and easy to make. I can’t promise it’s authentic, but it does have the wow factor, and the Venezuelan chocolate adds a deep rich glossy finish and flavor.


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Heat the olive oil in a casserole dish over medium-high heat and brown the chicken pieces in batches. Set aside on a plate. Add the shallots and garlic and stir until softened, about 1 minute. Pour in the orange juice and zest and stir up the browned bits in the casserole.

Add the tomatoes with their juices, fresh and dried chiles, coriander seeds, and sugar. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 5 minutes. Cover with a lid and place in the oven. Bake for 20 minutes.

Remove from the oven, lift out the chicken, and stir the chocolate into the remaining sauce. Return the chicken to the casserole, sprinkle with the cilantro, and serve with the sauce smothered over the chicken.


Calories per serving:

506 calories

Dietary restrictions:

High Fiber Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Wheat Free, Egg Free, Milk Free, Peanut Free, Tree Nut Free, Soy Free, Fish Free, Shellfish Free, Alcohol Free

Daily value:



  • Fat 238g 366%
  • Carbs 258g 86%
  • Saturated 77g 386%
  • Fiber 44g 176%
  • Trans 1g
  • Sugars 188g
  • Monounsaturated 99g
  • Polyunsaturated 41g
  • Protein 247g 493%
  • Cholesterol 1,230mg 410%
  • Sodium 1,720mg 72%
  • Calcium 686mg 69%
  • Magnesium 611mg 153%
  • Potassium 6,451mg 184%
  • Iron 22mg 125%
  • Zinc 25mg 166%
  • Phosphorus 2,662mg 380%
  • Vitamin A 474µg 53%
  • Vitamin C 465mg 774%
  • Thiamin (B1) 4mg 280%
  • Riboflavin (B2) 3mg 170%
  • Niacin (B3) 68mg 338%
  • Vitamin B6 7mg 340%
  • Folic Acid (B9) 390µg 98%
  • Vitamin B12 8µg 125%
  • Vitamin D 1µg 0%
  • Vitamin E 9mg 47%
  • Vitamin K 117µg 147%
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