Hanukkah Chicken Recipes (2024)

by Beth Lee · Published: · Modified:

Hanukkah Chicken Recipes are a perfect complement to the symbolic fried foods like latkes that we love to eat for Hannukah. This post includes lots of information about the Chanukah holiday and links to eight great chicken recipes.

For ease of browsing, find all my Hanukkah recipes in one place.

Hanukkah Chicken Recipes (1)

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What is Hanukkah? Chanukah? Hannukah? Channukah?

Hanukkah is the eight-night Jewish Festival of Lights, commemorating the rededication of the temple in 165 B.C. It is a celebration of the oil that miraculously lasted eight days (hence the length of the holiday) when they thought it would only last one.

Each night we add another candle to the hannukiah (Hanukkah menorah) until all eight candles are complete. There is also a helper candle called a shamash that is used to light the candles.

The candles are added to the hanukkiah from right to left each night but are lit from left to right as you can see my daughter doing very carefully below!

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The exact dates of Hannukah change because it is based on the Lunar calendar. Sometimes it overlaps Christmas and sometimes it starts a couple days after Thanksgiving. And as for the myriad spellings - it is a phonetic translation of a Hebrew word leaving it open for interpretation.

What are traditional Hanukkah foods?

Since Chanukah celebrates the oil that lasted longer than expected, the traditional foods are fried. Potato latkes and sufganiyot (jelly-filled doughnuts) are very popular. In our house, a little rolled pastry called a rugelach is our favorite, though it is not fried.

Below you see fried donuts on the left (photo by Annie Martin from The Essential Jewish Baking Cookbook), in the center you see one fried and filled with the jam I created in honor of my son, and on the right you see the donuts baked! (and I promise they are great!)

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Often people play a game called dreidel and use gold-wrapped edible chocolate coins as the game tokens. And when the game is over, everyone eats the money :-).

What to eat with the fried foods?

It's very possible to make a satisfying meal out of latkes with lots of sour cream and applesauce with a big salad and some vegetables. But very often, at least in the Ashkenazi Jewish tradition (from Eastern Europe), a brisket or chicken dish is a must.

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Brisket can be made ahead of time as can a good baked chicken dish. And if you are serving a large crowd or just want lots of leftovers, how about one of each? Below you'll find links to eight of my favorite Hanukkah chicken recipes - one for each night of the holiday!

8 Chicken Recipes for the 8 Nights of Hanukkah!

Apricot Jam Chicken

Apricot jam chicken with lemon and Dijon mustard is a wonderful blend of sweet, tart and savory flavors. And it’s so easy to prepare for a simple weeknight meal or a special holiday dinner.

Click for recipe!

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Roasted Chicken with Clementines

Wonderful flavors with lots of vegetables to complement your meal. My version of an Ottolenghi recipe that is a winner winner chicken dinner every single time!

Click for Recipe!

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Harissa Chicken with Preserved Lemons

A full meal on a sheet pan. Skip the potatoes if you are serving latkes.

Click for Recipe!

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How to Roast a Whole Chicken

If you have a whole chicken to cook, no fear. I taught my son to do it by text!

Click for Recipe!

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Chicken with Jerusalem Artichokes

Another one-pan wonder with the wonderful Jerusalem artichoke and some precious saffron too!

Click for Recipe!

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Chicken with Mushrooms and Thyme

A simple flavorful option for Hanukkah or any night of the week.

Click for Recipe!

Photo credit: pastrychefonline.com

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Persian Chicken Kabob (Kabob-eh Morgh)

Want to change it up - follow these wonderful directions for making Persian chicken kabobs.

Click for Recipe!

Photo credit: familyspice.com

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Roasted Herb Chicken with Mandarin Orange

The citrus flavors always lighten up the whole meal!

Click for Recipe!

Photo credit: fearlessdining.com

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Hanukkah Chicken Recipes (16)

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  1. Sandi

    I love this roundup Beth. Everything looks so tasty! I plan to make the apricot jam chicken first!


    • Beth Lee

      Thanks Sandi - if it makes your menu plan, then I know I'm doing something right!


  2. Dahn

    That chicken with apricot jam sounds fabulous. I make something similar with orange marmalade, I will have to try this. Welcome to MVP!


    • Beth Lee

      Thanks for the warm welcome to MVP! Oh orange marmalade would be wonderful.


  3. Rita Held

    Nice and simple. I love lemon anything, so I'll probably have to make this


    • Beth Lee

      It’s so easy but a mouthful of flavor!


  4. Laura

    This dish looks incredible! A great meal for any night of the week, especially Hanukkah! Happy holidays, my friend!


    • Beth Lee

      Thanks Laura! It really is a year round chicken dinner but I enjoy the lemony fruity counterpoint to the rich latkes!


  5. Richard Bernhardt

    I don't know how Chanukah came to be on the first of December this year, but it took me by surprise, but no matter. Enjoy the lights, enjoy the latkes, enjoy the dredels, enjoy most of all the smiles from the kids and family. Happy Chanukah! - Richard


  6. Kristen

    Happy Hannukah to you! Love your train and that chicken dish.


  7. Prerna@IndianSimmer

    Oh wow, this looks DELIGHTFUL!
    I'm so gonna try this recipe soon. Thanks for sharing!


  8. Cindy

    Hi Beth. How about that great Lipton onion soup recipe that we used to love. Wasn't that something your mom made you or do I have faulty memory. The apricot/pineapple preserves made me think of it.


    • omgyummy

      You're right Cindy - I think it was apricot jam mixed with onion soup. It was yummy wasn't it? I had forgotten about that favorite. Wonder if we would think it is still so good now that our palates have matured. Probably - because it would taste like comfort food.


Hanukkah Chicken Recipes (2024)


What is traditional Hanukkah dinner food? ›

From crispy latkes to tangy brisket to jammy sufganiyot. From shallow-fried potato latkes to deep-fried jelly doughnuts, traditional Hanukkah foods hinge on oil. Typically falling in December, the Jewish holiday, also called the Festival of Lights, celebrates the rededication of the Temple in Jerusalem.

What is a good Hanukkah menu? ›

A Traditional Menu for Hanukkah
  • 01 of 12. Potato Latkes I. View Recipe. ...
  • 02 of 12. Spiced Slow Cooker Applesauce. View Recipe. ...
  • 03 of 12. Applesauce. ...
  • 04 of 12. Most Amazing Challah. ...
  • 05 of 12. Wine-Braised Beef Brisket. ...
  • 06 of 12. Salmon with Lemon and Dill. ...
  • 07 of 12. Crispy Rosemary Chicken and Fries. ...
  • 08 of 12. Roasted Green Beans.
Oct 21, 2020

What is eaten on the first night of Hanukkah? ›

A perfect Hanukkah meal might start with matzoh ball soup, have a traditional brisket at the center and a stack of potato latkes on the side. If brisket is not your thing, a simple roasted chicken would serve very nicely, too.

What kind of junk food is commonly eaten during Hanukkah? ›

Fried foods, like potato pancakes and jelly doughnuts, are prepared and eaten throughout the holiday to celebrate the miracle of Hanukkah: oil that kept the menorah (an ancient lamp) lit for 8 days instead of the 1 day it was supposed to last.

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