This festive chicken liver parfait made with chicken livers, apple, warm spices, then topped with cranberry sauce, is perfect finger food for holiday gatherings from Thanksgiving through the New Year. Surprise your family and friends with this healthy and delicious appetizer.
I made it just the way my mom did, except for the cranberry sauce. Cranberry sauce makes this recipe look more appetizing, creates a holiday look, and of course, the sauce matches so well with liver and warm winter spices.
This easy chicken liver parfait (Pate) recipe will be your best holiday appetizer: it looks fancy, requires minimum time, it's low cost and super nutritious.
- What is liver parfait?
- Why you will love this recipe?
- Ingredients for the parfait
- Ingredients for the orange cranberry sauce topping
- Recommended equipment
- Step-by-step instructions
- How to make pate cranberry topping
- Serving suggestions
- How to store
- Recipe variations
- Frequently asked questions
- Other holiday recipes
- More global dips recipes
- 📖 Recipe
- 💬 Comments
What is liver parfait?
Liver Parfait or Pate is a savory spread made with liver, ground meat, onions, butter, spices, and often cognac. It is a popular dish in European countries.
Chicken liver pate is one of my family's favorite spreads. Chicken livers are inexpensive and easily available.
The spread is silky smooth, flavorful, and rich in nutrients. It has a delicate taste and goes well with fresh baguettes or crackers.
Why you will love this recipe?
- It is very affordable. One pound of organic chicken livers costs less than 4 dollars at Whole Foods.
- One recipe batch served with bread will feed 6-8 people.
- The liver is super nutritious and healthy food, full of iron, vitamin A and other essential nutrients.
- This recipe is kid-friendly. Kids love crackers and spread. Spread this creamy chicken liver pâté on top of crackers to add some nutritious protein to your kids' diet.
Ingredients for the parfait
- Chicken Livers: washed, dried, and trimmed. If possible, buy organic chicken livers.
- Olive Oil: or any other neutral oil will work as well.
- Onion: yellow or any other onion of your choice will be good.
- Granny Smith Apple: use only this type of apple. It gives the spread a pleasantly sour and refreshing taste.
- Spices: nutmeg, coriander, and cloves. Warm spices pair well with a delicate chicken liver.
- Water: you will need just little bit of filtered water for cooking this pate. Water will help to make the spread even creamier and it will blend better.
- Salt: do not add too much salt. ¼-1/2 teaspoon is plenty as I am for lower sodium recipes.
- Butter: good quality unsalted butter will be added during the blending process.
Ingredients for the orange cranberry sauce topping
- Fresh Cranberries: washed and sorted. If you can not find fresh cranberries, use the frozen ones.
- Fresh Orange: I used zest and the juice from the orange.
- Sugar: cane organic sugar.
Please, see recipe card for quantities.
- large bowl and colander: you will need it to rinse the liver and cranberries.
- cutting board: for trimming the livers, chopping onions and apple .
- few paper towels to pat dry the livers.
- measuring cup.
- measuring spoons.
- cheese or zest grater.
- a large frying pan with the lid.
- small saucepan with lid.
- food processor.
- 8oz ceramic or glass jars with lids (2 ea).
- Rinse the chicken liver in cold water, trim any fat. Pat dry the livers with some paper towels. Chop the onion coarsely. Peel, core, and cube the apple.
- In a large frying pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and cook until translucent.
- Carefully place the livers in the pan and fry stirring occasionally until all sides browned for about 2 minutes.
- Add the cubed apple, salt, spices and cook for another minute until the spices release their aroma.
- Add water, cover the pan with the lid.
- Cook it on low for about 4 minutes or until apples are soft and livers are still slightly pink inside.
- Turn off the heat and let the livers cool down for 5 minutes. Transfer the content to the food processor, including any liquid. Add fresh butter.
- Pulse the mixture until smooth. Transfer the spread to the jars, add a layer of cranberry sauce. You can serve it immediately, but it's better to refrigerate the pâté for one hour or longer.
How to make pate cranberry topping
- Rinse, drain and sort the fresh cranberries. Using a cheese grater remove the outer layer of zest from half of the orange.
- Add cranberries, orange juice, and zest to the small saucepan. Bring to boil, cover, turn the heat on low and cook for about 6 minutes until the cranberries open up and become soft.
3. Mash the sauce with the fork. Use the sauce to top cooked liver spread.
- as holiday appetizer with a fresh baguette.
- for breakfast: on top of cooked eggs.
- charcuterie board: along with berries and cheese.
- dip for crackers, chips or pretzels.
How to store
- Refrigeration: Store this spread in ceramic or glass serving jars with lids. If you do not have lids use plastic wrap or foil. It can remain fresh up for 3 days in the refrigerator.
- Freezer: You can freeze the chicken liver pate up for 2 months. When freezing, skip the cranberry sauce and add a layer of melted butter on top for preserving.
- Boil the livers instead of frying. Saute onions and apples separately while cooking the livers in boiling water.
- Add some cognac to de-glaze the onions. Classic pâté recipes usually call for alcohol to add the flavor.
- Skip the cranberry sauce and add a layer of butter instead. If skipping the sauce, I recommend melting 3 tablespoons of butter until liquid, and pour it as a thin layer on top of the chicken liver spread. The butter will harden in the fridge and will create a great color and will serve as a natural preservative for the spread.
Frequently asked questions
Whole Food always has organic chicken livers at the fresh meats section. You can also find it at your local butcher shop.
Overcooked liver can be grainy. You can add little bit of broth or water, and blend it longer to fix the problem.
Chicken livers are fully cooked when the internal temperature reached 165°F. They should not be bloody inside, but can remain slightly pink.
Other holiday recipes
More global dips recipes
Chiken liver parfait
- large bowl
- cutting board
- Measuring Cup
- measuring spoons
- frying pan with lid
- zest grater
- small saucepan with lid
- food processor
- 2x glass or ceramic 8oz jars
Chicken liver parfait
- 1 lb organic chicken livers rinsed and trimmed
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- ½ yellow onion
- 1 granny smith apple
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 pinches nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon ground coriander
- 3 cloves crushed between fingers
- 3 Tablespoons water
- 2 Tablespoons butter
Orange cranberry sauce
- 1 cup fresh cranberries washed and sorted
- 3 Tablespoons cane sugar
- 1 Tablespoon orange zest
- 4 Tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice juice of one orange
Chicken liver pâté
- Pat dry rinsed livers with paper towels, trim any access fat. Chop the onion. Peel, core and cube the apple.
- Preheat olive oil over medium heat in a large frying pan. Add onions and cook until translucent. Add livers and brown them on both ides for about one minute.
- Add apples, salt, spices and cook for another minute or until spices release their aroma. Add 3 Tablespoons of water, cover and turn heat on low.
- Simmer until apples are soft and livers are still slightly pink inside. Turn off the heat and let it cool down little bit. The livers are fully cooked when the internal temperature reaches 165°F.
- Transfer the warm mixture to the food processor, add butter and pulse until it turns into a creamy paste. Transfer the spread into jars with lids, pour the layer of cranberry sauce on top. Refrigerate before serving.
Orange cranberry sauce
- Place washed and sorted cranberries in a small pot. Add sugar, zest and orange juice. Bring to boil, cover, lower the heat and cook for 5-6 minutes until berries open up and soft .
- Use a fork to mash the sauce, just little bit. Pour the sauce on top of the chicken liver pate to create a delicious cranberry layer. Refrigerate before serving. Enjoy on a slice of fresh baguette.
- do not overcook the livers, they cook very quickly and need to remain slightly pink inside
- if the pate will be frozen, skip the cranberry sauce and add a layer of added butter on top instead.
- the nutrition information does not include the cranberry sauce.
- nutritional facts are for informational purposes only.