This Arroz con Pollo recipe is simple but full of South of the Border flavor. Chicken breast is seasoned then cooked with tomatoes and rice to create a hearty dish that’s sure to be a family favorite.
For this recipe you’ll need: olive oil, chicken breast, chicken stock, Tony Chachere’s seasoning, cumin, fresh cilantro, cheddar cheese, diced tomatoes with chiles, stewed tomatoes, minced garlic, pimentos, onion, and rice, plus a heavy pot with a lid.
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Arroz con pollo, pronounced ah-roz cahn poy-yo, is simply chicken and rice with all kinds of spices and seasonings. It’s so simple to make, easy on the budget, and you can stretch the recipe by just using more rice and tomatoes. What’s not to like?
It’s probably no surprise that I like Mexican food, right? I like Mexican food, Tex-Mex, South American… you name it. There’s something magical about the combination of tomatoes, onions, garlic, and chiles. I am a big fan of cilantro but if you don’t like it then feel free to leave it out or substitute parsley.
So, I was three days into my birthday trip to France when I started craving Mexican food. I couldn’t believe it. Here I was in a place I had dreamed about going to for just about 50 years, surrounded by some of the most celebrated food in the world, and I was craving spicy foods with lots of cumin. It was crazy!
I’m happy to say that it didn’t diminish any of the excitement and thrill of the trip. I ate Nutella crepes in Paris, Croque Monsieur in Rouen, Tomato Basil soup in Bayeaux, apple tarts in Normandy… you get the idea. I basically ate my way through France! It was amazing. I didn’t meet one wine that I didn’t like… no surprise there.
And… my rusty French actually cleaned up and became understandable to the people there. Sadly that happened on the 9th day of a 10 day trip.
So, back to Tex-Mex. Sorry, that wasn’t a very smooth transition but it was a necessary one.
This dish is so easy plus if there are any leftovers they are even better the next day. You can use long grain rice if you want but I used the medium grain Arborio rice in this particular dish. I just like the texture better. Basically you season the chicken with a spicy seasoning mixture then brown it in the hot olive oil. Add the rice and let it saute a little, then add the remaining ingredients (except the cheese). About 30 minutes later you have a pot of this steaming arroz con pollo recipe. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.
This is a medium spicy dish. If you prefer it to be less spicy then use just stewed tomatoes. I like to serve it with a salad and some hot corn tortillas with butter. So, whether you’ve got Cinco de Mayo going on or you are just hungry for some classic Mexican flavors this Mexican chicken casserole recipe is sure to find a place at the top of your list.
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Arborio rice is excellent in this arroz con pollo recipe. It gives it a rich, creamy quality that is delicious.
Tony Chachere’s Creole seasoning is a necessary, if not authentic, part of this dish. It adds a kick of spicy flavor that you’re not expecting. You’ll find you use it a lot!
Finally, you’ll want a heavy saucepan. My husband gave me a red Cuisinart oval pot for my birthday and it is gorgeous! The heaviness of the pot helps to ensure even cooking and no scorching!
Arroz con Pollo Recipe
- 1 1/2 pounds boneless chicken breast or thigh
- 1 tablespoon Tony Chachere's Creole seasoning
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 cups uncooked rice
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 1 4 ounce jar pimentos
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 5 cups chicken stock
- 1 10- ounce can Rotel tomatoes or other tomatoes with chiles
- 1 14- ounce can stewed tomatoes
- 1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese.
- Heat olive oil in a heavy pan.
- Cut the chicken breast into bitesized chunks
- Season with the Tony Chachere's.
- Brown the chicken in the olive oil.
- Remove the chicken and add the rice.
- Cook, stirring constantly, for a couple of minutes just to toast the rice a little bit.
- Add the chicken back in to the pan.
- Add the remaining ingredients except the cheese.
- Stir to blend.
- Bring to a simmer, cover, and cook until the rice is done , 20 to 30 minutes.
- Just before serving stir in half the cheese, put into a serving dish, and top with the remaining cheese.
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