Grilled Lemon Chicken with Spiced Couscous

This recipe from Harley Pasternak's book, The 5-Factor World Diet, is quick to prepare and full of healthy ingredients  – perfect for staving off holiday weight gain

Credit: Catherine Roscoe Barr

Marinating chicken in lemon juice gives it a fresh flavour without adding extra calories

This dinner recipe was inspired by flavourful world cuisine and designed by a celebrity trainer to be easy to prepare and super healthy

During the holiday party season it’s important to have some delicious, nutritious, low-calorie meals in your repertoire to balance all the cocktail-swigging, cookie-munching, and appie-devouring you may be partaking in.

This is one of those meals.

The recipe comes from the The 5-Factor World Diet, a book by Canadian fitness professional and LA-based trainer-to-the-stars, Harley Pasternak.

The book is an interesting read about healthy cuisines from other cultures with lots of great recipes that are healthy and incredibly easy to make – that’s the whole point behind Pasternak’s 5-factor approach.

I also have his books 5-Factor Fitness and The 5-Factor Diet, which have easy-to-follow workouts and more easy-to-follow recipes.

This is the second recipe I’ve tried from the The 5-Factor World Diet, the first was for tandoori chicken and lentils (which I added a few more ingredients, and calories, to).


This recipe serves 2

  • 1/2 cup bulgur (I used whole wheat couscous instead)
  • Reduced-sodium chicken broth (check package instructions for amount)
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger, peeled and minced
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 cumin
  • 1/2 red pepper, chopped
  • 2 green onions, chopped (I added these for some more colour and crunch)
  • 4 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (I used bone-in because they were on sale)


  1. In large resealable bag, combine chicken, 2 tbsp lemon juice, salt and pepper, and let marinate for 10 minutes.
  2. Using electric grill or BBQ, cook chicken for about 6 minutes per side or until no longer pink in centre.
  3. Meanwhile, in medium pot, cook bulgur or couscous according to package instructions, substituting chicken broth for water and adding ginger, turmeric, cinnamon and cumin.
  4. Remove pot from heat and add red pepper, 2 tbsp lemon juice, salt and pepper, stirring to combine.
  5. Serve chicken with couscous mixture.