Venezuelan Chocolate Chicken Recipe (Not Another Chocolate Dessert)

Chocolate is not only about dessert. Chocolate also adds depth and complexity to certain savory sauces. This is a Venezuelan recipe, adapted from Paul Young’s chocolate adventures. Venezuelan chocolate chicken has a unique flavor and it is a delicious lunch idea – not a dessert! You will need around half an hour to prepare it and around 25 minutes to cook. So, whenever you are ready to experiment in the kitchen – this is the recipe! Try it!


  • 3 pounds’ chicken (thighs and legs)
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 shallots, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 Valencia oranges (juice and zest)
  • 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
  • 2 dried ancho chilies (shredded, seeded)
  • 2 jalapeno chilies (chopped, seeded)
  • 15 oz. diced canned tomatoes
  • 3 sprigs cilantro (roughly chopped)
  • 3 ounces 70% dark chocolate (broken into pieces)
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar



  • Preheat oven to 400°F/200°C/Gas Mark 6.
  • In a heavy-bottomed skillet, apply oil and heat over medium-high heat, around 1 min. Cook shallots and garlic until tender (3-4 minutes).
  • Brown chicken on both side, around 10 minutes. Apply orange juice, orange zest, coriander seeds, dried and fresh chilies, sugar, and tomatoes. Bring to low boil, around 5 minutes. Then, cover, simmer for 20 minutes.
  • Apply skillet in oven. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove and transfer chicken to a plate (remove aside from skillet).
  • Apply chocolate pieces to skillet and whisk until incorporated, about 2 minutes, when you will get a dark gravy-like sauce. Next, return the meat to the skillet.
  • Finally, serve over black beans and rice (if desired) with chicken stifled in the sauce.