Doro Wat – Ethiopian Chicken Stew

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Some of my closest friends since college have been Ethiopian and so my love for Ethiopian food started very early. The Ethiopian food that my friends would make in college always reminded me of being home as the food was so aromatic and so full of flavors. Wat or wot stands for stew or curry in Ethiopia. This is my recipe for the spicy delectable Doro Wat with some slight variations.

There are a few key ingredients that most Ethiopian kitchens have. One is Niter Kibbeh Butter, which is usually a clarified butter infused with herbs and the other is Berbere, a blend of spices that gives dishes that authentic Ethiopian flavor. I did not try my hand at the butter or the berbere and ordered mine online. Click on the names to see which ones I ordered. One of these days I may just try my hand at making my own Niter Kibbeh and Berbere.

I also added some Paneer(fresh Indian Cheese) as my daughter is vegetarian and it would give her something to have in the stew. She is not a strict vegetarian so she is willing to eat around the chicken.

The plating is usually done family-style at most Ethiopian restaurants and the injera is used as a scoop to eat. They usually do not serve the food with silverware. So to get the most authentic flavors, serve the Injera on a family platter with Doro Wat (Spicy Chicken Stew with Egg), Misr Wat (Red Lentil), Gomen Wat (Collard Greens), and Atkilt Wat(Cabbage and potatoes) with a side of tangy green salad.

Doro Wat – Spicy Ethiopian Stew

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Ethiopian
Keyword: chicken, curry, gluten free, spicy, stew


  • 2 Bay leaves optional
  • 3 tbsp Niter kibbeh (divided) can use ghee (Indian clarified butter)
  • 2 tbsp Vegetable oil (divided)
  • 2 Medium onions finely diced
  • 2 Small tomatoes diced finely
  • 1 tbsp Tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp Minced ginger
  • 2 tbsp Minced garlic
  • 3 tbsp Berbere spice
  • 1/2 tbsp Paprika
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 cup Vegetable or chicken stock
  • 2 Lemons freshly squeezed per taste
  • 4 Hard boiled eggs peeled, cut in half and pierced with a fork divided
  • 6 chicken thighs or legs Can use a mix of both


  • Season chicken with salt and lemon juice and set aside for at least 30 minutes
  • Heat a large pot, add 2 tbsp butter along with 1 tbsp oil, bay leaves and onions. Saute on low heat for at least 15 minutes
  • Add diced tomatoes and saute till onions and tomatoes are well blended.
  • Add a little more oil and butter and add the ginger, garlic, and spices.
  • Stir and cook for at least another 10 minutes
  • Add tomato paste and mix. Add a little broth so it doesn't burn
  • Lower the heat and add the chicken, the remaining broth, and stir well.
  • Cover and cook for at least 40 minutes.
  • Add in three eggs and some lemon juice till eggs are well coated and immersed in the sauce.
  • Taste for spice levels and add more berbere if needed.
  • Cook the chicken for another 10./15 minutes till it is tender.
  • Adjust the sauce thickness and spice based on your taste.
  • Plate with other stews and add the remaining eggs on top

As always have FUN IN YOUR KITCHEN as every creation is your very own, and one of its kind masterpieces.

This is my creation that I am sharing. If you try the recipe, do tag me on Instagram – Footprint The World and add the tag #footprinttheworld as it’s always so fun to see the different variations.

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