Hello, foodies of all levels! Today, I have an exquisite recipe that will transport your palate to the sunny streets of Havana. Have you ever heard of Arroz con Pollo? It’s a dish that means “rice with chicken,” but it’s so much more than that. It’s a staple in the Latin American cuisine, and its variations can be found in countries like Cuba, Puerto Rico, and Spain.
But let me tell you something: my recipe for Baked Arroz Con Pollo will blow your mind. The flavors are rich and complex, the texture is creamy and comforting, and the aroma is enticing beyond words. It’s a one-pan meal that will satisfy even the hungriest and pickiest eaters. Picture tender chicken thighs nestled in a bed of fluffy yellow rice with peppers, onions, garlic, tomato sauce, and spices. Imagine the whole ensemble coming together in the oven to create a crispy crust on top while retaining moisture inside.
Are you drooling yet? I know I am. This baked arroz con pollo recipe is not only delicious but also easy to make and customizable to your liking. You can use chicken breasts instead of thighs if you prefer white meat or swap green bell peppers for red if you want more sweetness. You can also add saffron or coconut milk for extra flavor and depth.
But don’t take my word for it. Try it yourself and feel the warmth of Latin hospitality in your own home. Get ready to impress yourself, your family, and your friends with this classic dish with a modern twist. Are you ready to take the plunge into the world of arroz con pollo? Let’s get cooking!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Rice lovers, rejoice! This recipe for Baked Arroz Con Pollo is a mouth-watering combination of yellow rice, tender chicken, and delightful spices. I guarantee that this dish will take your taste buds on a roller coaster ride that you’ll never forget!
One of the best reasons to love this recipe is its easy preparation. The ingredients are simple and easily found in supermarkets. The yellow rice is cooked with bay leaf, chicken broth, and canned tomato until it’s fluffy and absorbs all the delicious flavors. The chicken thighs are seasoned with garlic, onion, olive oil, salt, and pepper before they’re baked to perfection.
The combination of yellow rice and chicken makes this dish perfect for any occasion – be it a family dinner or a potluck party. And as it can be cooked in a large Dutch oven, it’s an excellent one-pot meal that saves on cooking time and dishes.
The arroz con pollo recipe also serves as a gateway to Latin American cuisine. This dish originated in Spain and has since become popular in many Latin American countries like Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the Dominican Republic. You can experience the essence of each culture through its unique twist on this recipe. For example, Cubans add green pepper to their arroz con pollo while Puerto Ricans use saffron to give their rice a vibrant color.
Overall, there’s no reason not to love this delectable arroz con pollo recipe! It’s versatile, easy to make, full of flavor, and invites you to explore different cultures with every bite. So what are you waiting for? Grab your apron and let’s get cooking!
Here’s what you will need to make this delicious Baked Arroz Con Pollo recipe:
For the Yellow Rice:
- 2 1/2 cups yellow rice
- 2 bay leaves
- 3 cups chicken broth
- 1 can of diced tomato
For the Chicken and Vegetables:
- 4 chicken thighs, bone-in and skin-on
- Salt and pepper for seasoning the chicken
- 1 green pepper, sliced
- 1 onion, thinly sliced
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
Note: You can use boneless and skinless chicken breast if you prefer a leaner option. And if you are looking for a vegetarian option, just swap the chicken broth for vegetable broth and use your favorite vegetables instead of chicken.
By using these ingredients, you will create a dish that is rich in protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Moreover, this recipe has a perfect balance between savory flavors and spicy notes from the binomial rice-chicken making it an excellent option for those who love comfort food with bold taste.
The Recipe How-To
Step 1: Season the Chicken
Step 2: Heat the Oil
In a large Dutch oven or skillet over medium-high heat, heat olive oil.
Step 3: Brown the Chicken
When the oil is hot enough, add chicken thighs and brown each side for about 4-5 minutes. Remove from the skillet and set aside.
Step 4: Sauté Vegetables
Step 5: Add Rice
Then it’s time to add the star of our dish, sautéed arroz con pollo rice mix in the skillet until well combined with the vegetables. Stir frequently, allowing it to toast for about 2 minutes.
Step 6: Pour in Liquid and Canned Tomatoes
Step 7: Bake in Preheated Oven
Preheat your oven to 350°F. Carefully place the browned chicken thighs on top of the rice mixture, gently pushing some into it if needed. Cover the dutch oven or skillet and place in the preheated oven. Bake for 30 minutes or until the rice has fully absorbed the liquid and the chicken is cooked through.
Step 8: Serve and Enjoy!
Remove from the oven and let it rest for a few minutes. Before serving, sprinkle with some fresh parsley or cilantro on top for added freshness. Serve with yellow rice and any other side of your choice. Enjoy your homemade arroz con pollo – a delicious Latin American one-pot rice dish!
Substitutions and Variations
One of the great things about this Baked Arroz Con Pollo recipe is its versatility. There are many ways to adjust the recipe to suit your preferences or dietary restrictions.
Here are some substitutions and variations you can try:
– Rice: Instead of yellow rice, you can use white rice, basmati rice, brown rice or saffron rice. Each variety offers a different texture and flavor profile that can add dimension to your dish.
– Protein: If you’re not a fan of chicken, let’s try adding chorizo for a spicy twist, shrimp or vegetarian with chickpeas.
– Vegetables: This recipe calls for green bell pepper and onion, but feel free to add more veggies like peas, corn or carrots.
– Spice Level: Increase or decrease the amount of heat by adding more or less chili powder, red pepper flakes or smoked paprika accordingly.
– Cheese: To give your Arroz Con Pollo an extra kick and flavor, sprinkle cotija cheese on top before serving.
– Region-specific variations: There are numerous deviations made incorporating different meats and ingredients such as Cuban arroz con pollo which includes tomato sauce and sazon while Puerto Rican arroz con pollo uses sofrito, annato peas,and corn. Including some of these region-specific variations in one’s cooking can add diversity between recipes making it more exciting on every bite.
Try these substitutions and variations out according to your taste preference!
Serving and Pairing
The aroma of this delicious baked arroz con pollo recipe will fill your kitchen with the unmistakable scent of savory spices and chicken. But when it comes to serving and pairing, there are a few tips that can enhance the overall experience.
First, I recommend serving this one-pot wonder straight from the dutch oven. There’s something special about diving right into a hearty casserole hot out of the oven. Plus, it makes for easy cleanup!
To add a burst of freshness to your plate, you can serve this dish with a side of sliced avocado or a simple green salad dressed with olive oil and vinegar. The creaminess of the avocado provides a cool contrast to the warm and savory flavors of the arroz con pollo.
If you’re looking for a heartier meal, you could pair this classic Puerto Rican dish with fried plantains or yuca fries. The starchy sweetness of these dishes balances well against the slightly acidic tomato flavor in the arroz con pollo.
And if you really want to go all out, pairing this dish with a classic Cuban cocktail like a mojito or daiquiri will transport you to Havana in no time!
However you choose to serve and pair this irresistible arroz con pollo recipe, it’s sure to be a hit at any gathering.
Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating
Want to enjoy this delicious meal throughout the week? No problem, as this recipe is perfect for meal prep and can be stored in the fridge for up to 4 days.
To make things even more convenient, you can definitely make the dish ahead of time and reheat when ready to eat. To do so, simply cover the dutch oven with a lid or foil and store it in the fridge once it has cooled down completely.
When you’re ready to serve, preheat the oven to 350°F and reheat the arroz con pollo in the preheated oven for about 15 minutes or until heated through. You may need to add some water or chicken broth to moisten the rice before reheating.
If you don’t have access to an oven, it’s perfectly fine to use a microwave for reheating leftovers. Put the arroz con pollo on a microwave-safe plate, and heat on high for 1-2 minutes or until hot.
One important thing to note is that since this dish contains chicken, it’s not recommended to keep leftovers longer than four days as it can become unsafe to consume. Therefore, we strongly recommend that you label your meal prep containers with the date they were prepared so you know exactly how long they have been stored in your fridge.
With these make-ahead, storing, and reheating tips in mind, you’ll be able to whip up a flavorful arroz con pollo dish that you can enjoy all week long!
Tips for Perfect Results
Creating the perfect Baked Arroz Con Pollo takes some skill and experience, but with a few tips and tricks, you’ll be able to master this recipe in no time. Here are some suggestions to ensure your dish comes out exactly as planned.
Firstly, when seasoning your chicken thighs or breasts, make sure to generously sprinkle them with salt and pepper. This allows the meat to absorb the flavors of the spices and adds a depth of flavor to the final dish.
Another important step is properly heating the olive oil in your large Dutch oven before adding the rice and chicken. Heat the olive oil to medium-high heat before adding the arroz con pollo. This will allow the rice to get slightly toasted and it will create a beautiful texture to each bite.
It’s also crucial to use high-quality ingredients when making this dish. From the yellow rice to the homemade chicken broth, each component plays an important role in creating a well-balanced flavor profile. We recommend using canned tomatoes for this recipe as they tend to be sweeter than fresh tomatoes which adds natural sweetness and flavor to your dish.
Lastly, once you’ve baked the arroz con pollo for 30 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit, remove it from oven and let it rest for about five minutes in order for all of the flavors to meld together perfectly. Cut into one of the chicken pieces after it has rested; if it’s still pink inside or not cooked through, lightly cover with foil and return back to oven for an additional 5-10 minutes.
With these tips in mind, you have now everything you need to make perfect Baked Arroz Con Pollo that is sure to impress your guests!
In conclusion, the Baked Arroz Con Pollo recipe is a must-try for those who love a flavorful, one-pot meal that combines yellow rice and chicken. This recipe is not only easy to make but also offers a lot of flexibility in terms of ingredients and variations to suit your taste. Whether you prefer the Puerto Rican, Cuban or Spanish version, this recipe can accommodate your cravings with just a few tweaks.
With its tender chicken thighs, aromatic saffron rice, and mouth-watering combination of spices and veggies, you will be blown away by the intense flavors and textures that this dish offers. The best part? It’s a one-pot dish that saves you time on preparation and clean-up!
Trust me when I say that this Baked Arroz Con Pollo recipe will become a regular in your recipe box. Don’t hesitate to give it a try today and share it with family and friends. Happy cooking!
Baked Arroz Con Pollo Recipe
- 3 cups shredded cooked chicken
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium onion
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 small green pepper, chopped
- 1/2 cup canned tomato
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 (10 ounce) package yellow rice
- Saute veggies in oil.
- Add broth, tomatoes and bay leaf.
- Bring to a boil.
- Spread rice in a 9X13 casserole pan.
- Pour hot liquid over all, stir well.
- Add chicken, mix.
- Bake at 350° for one hour.
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Dora is a chef well-versed in Brazilian and American cuisine. After a hard day's work in the kitchen of her restaurant, she finds the time to jot down recipes for her food blog. Her recipes are sure to delight foodies everywhere, as she strives to make each one unique and enjoyable to read.