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Side shot of a bowl of lemon couscous with fresh parsley on top.

Lemon Couscous

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  • Author: Erin Jensen
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings 1x
  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: American


Lemon Couscous – a light, bright and delicious lemon couscous recipe that is the perfect side dish for any meal!


  • 2 teaspoons olive oil 
  • 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
  • 1 cup chicken broth or water
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest, more per taste
  • 1 tablespoon butter (regular or dairy-free)
  • 1 cup Moraccan-style couscous
  • 12 tablespoons lemon juice
  • topping: parsley, fresh chopped (optional)


  1. Bring medium saucepan to medium-high heat. Add oil and swirl to coat the pan. Add garlic and move around pan until fragrant, approx. 30 seconds. 
  2. Add 1 cup water, salt, pepper, lemon zest, butter. Stir and bring to a boil. 
  3. Add couscous, stir quickly, cover and remove from heat. 
  4. Let stand 5 minutes.
  5. Fluff with fork. 
  6. Add 1 tablespoon lemon juice and toss. Taste and add any additional lemon zest or juice, as desired. 
  7.  Serve immediately – we love serving this with these Grilled Lamb Chops + Mint Chimichurri.


  • Dairy-Free: to make this dairy-free use a plant-based butter.
  • Couscous: I used Moraccan-style couscous for this recipe – you can use a pearl or other type of couscous BUT you may need to change the cook time, etc. Simply look at the package instructions and cook accordingly. 
  • Storage: store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.


  • Serving Size: 6 oz
  • Calories: 86
  • Sugar: 0.2 g
  • Sodium: 43.3 mg
  • Fat: 9.4 g
  • Carbohydrates: 1.2 g
  • Protein: 0.3 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg