Braised food

Braised Chicken and Chayote

Although chayote is often found in Caribbean recipes, it is underutilized elsewhere. With a sweet, starchy and slightly fruity flavor, it adds a lot of flavor to this simple dish.

What to buy: The chayote is a gourd common to Caribbean cuisine, and it has many aliases: chocho, mirliton, christophène, vegetable pear. Females have smooth skin, while males have prickly skin; either will work in this recipe, although the female fruit is easier to prepare. Look for firm, blemish-free chayotes. If you can’t find chayote, substitute it with squash or potatoes.

This dish was featured as part of our Fall Ingredient Recipes photo gallery.

  • Yield: 2 to 3 servings
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Total: 45 mins

Ingredients (8)

  • 4 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (about 1 pound total)
  • 2 large-diced medium chayotes (about 1 pound)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2/3 cup low sodium chicken broth or water
  • 1/2 lemon


  1. Place the chicken thighs in a large bowl with the diced chayotes. Add olive oil, salt and pepper and toss until evenly coated.
  2. Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add the chicken (skin side down) and the chayote pieces. Cook, without disturbing, until chicken skin is crispy and chayote is golden brown, about 20 minutes. Flip the chicken, sprinkle the oregano over the chayote and stir.
  3. Add the broth or water to the pot (avoid the chicken skin) and cook uncovered until the chicken registers 165°F on an instant-read thermometer, the underside is browned and the chayote is tender with a fork, about 15 minutes more.
  4. Squeeze the lemon over it before serving.