Chicken in Saffron Broth

This dish started with me flipping through one of Julia Child’s cookbooks and seeing something called “Pot-Au-Feu.” It looked good, if a little complicated. In Julia’s recipe, she trussed the chicken and stuffed it with homemade dressing before placing it in the boiling water. That sounded great, but I needed something quicker. I started with the veggies I had on hand — carrots, a leek, some green beans from the garden and a few gold potatoes. I also added four cloves of garlic later. The real magic of this meal is that my VERY picky children loved it. That’s a win in this house. (Scroll to the bottom for quick ingredients and instructions.)

Veggies ready for chopping
Vegetables including carrots, leeks, garlic, potatoes and garden green beans. Add what you have on hand!
Saffron can be hard to find, but this one is at Central Market for $8. I used about 1/4 of it for this recipe.
Everything in the pot
I love it when it all comes together and looks like boiling art!
Whole chicken pulled out of the broth
Can’t you just smell it?
The finished product
The finished product!


  • 1 whole chicken, preferably pastured and/or organic
  • 1 package Italian sausage links (or sausage of choice). Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods both have Whole 30 compliant ones that we like.
  • 1/2 teaspoon saffron
  • Water, to fill the pan
  • Four to five medium gold potatoes
  • One large leek
  • One to two cups fresh green beans or snap peas, ends cut off
  • Three to five large carrots
  • Four cloves garlic (or to taste)
  • Sea salt and pepper
  • Sprig of Rosemary

Chop all veggies and set aside. Place the defrosted whole chicken, giblets removed, in a large stock pan. Fill to cover 2/3 of the chicken with warm water. Bring pot to a boil while you add saffron, salt and pepper. Turn down to a simmer and cover for about an hour, or until chicken is cooked through. Time can vary based on the size of your chicken. Add veggies, garlic (diced), rosemary and sausages. Simmer for another 20 minutes or so, until all veggies and sausages are cooked through. Pull the chicken out and set in a bowl or on a platter with a lip, and cut off the pieces you want to serve. Place the chicken, a piece of sausage and desired amount of veggies and broth in a bowl. Enjoy!

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