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Easy Spanish Chicken and Rice Recipe

The number of Spanish dinner recipes is practically countless, but you should know that the Andalusians always have something up their sleeve.

One of these is the famous Spanish chicken and rice, one of the easy Spanish dishes that crossed the borders of the country and became loved all over the world.

In this article, we will focus on the traditional Spanish recipe to make this dish, and we will give you some tips so that you can adapt the recipe to your times and the ingredients you have available.

Spanish chicken and rice in a pot on a tablecloth. Easy Spanish Chicken and Rice Recipe

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Background of the Dish

spanish chicken and rice in a bowl, next to rice, garlic and seasoning.

Recipes for Spanish rice and chicken had a boom in Spain during the early 1900s, and over time it became a classic in all parts of the country.

In particular, the recipe in this article quickly became popular since, unlike other Spanish recipes with rice (such as Spanish chorizo rice or Paella), rice with chicken was much cheaper so everyone could make it.

At one point the Spanish chicken and rice was a meal to get out of trouble during the crisis and it helped to include some protein in the diet.

But then the people of Southern Spain ended up loving it and we can no longer live without it.

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A plate of Spanish rice and on the left it's written Easy Spanish chicken and rice.

Things You’ll Need for Spanish Chicken and Rice

To make this easy Spanish rice you only need rice, chicken, broth, and some vegetables.

As for the equipment, it is the best of the Spanish chicken recipes since it only requires a large pot, a cutting board, and a sharp knife.

Raw Chicken Breast in a bowl with onions and other ingredients in the background.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (200g) white rice
  • 1 2/3 cups (400ml) chicken broth
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 onions
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 4 chicken breasts
  • Salt and pepper (for seasoning)
  • 1 teaspoon paprika (for seasoning, optional)
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 bag of Mexican frozen vegetables (optional)

How to Make Spanish Chicken and Rice – Step by Step Guide

rice in a pan being cooked on the stove.
  1. To start making this Spanish chicken recipe you have to prepare the vegetables. This is pretty simple, just cut the onions, garlic and red bell pepper into pieces of the size that you want.
  1. If you are using mexican vegetable mix, boil it before adding them to the Spanish chicken and rice dish. 
  1. Then, put olive oil in a large pot and heat over medium heat. Once the oil starts to sizzle, put the vegetables from the previous step to fry. To do that you just have to cook them for 5 minutes while stirring constantly.
  1. The next step in this Spanish rice chicken is to add chicken breasts. You should cut them into strips or cubes, of course, you could put them whole, but it will take longer to cook. Stir occasionally so nothing burns.
  1. In the meantime, wash, peel and cut the tomatoes (better if they are fresh and ripe). Put them in the pot once the chicken is cooked. Cook for another 5 minutes.
  1. After that, add the rice, first without extra liquid so that it can absorb all the flavors faster. Stir for 5 minutes.
  1. Now add the chicken broth, salt, pepper, and paprika. Cook for 15 minutes or until most of the liquid has evaporated, and it is more like a thick sauce for the Spanish chicken with rice.
  1. For the last step add the Mexican vegetable mix and you can verify that the seasoning is fine (add more salt or pepper if necessary). Then serve the chicken and Spanish rice while hot.

Substitution of Ingredients

Spanish chicken and rice in a pot decorated with parsley.

The positive side of the Spanish rice recipes with chicken is that they always allow you to make several changes without any problems.

The simplest is to replace the chicken broth with another type.

The best change would be using vegetable broth as a replacement, but you could use the same amount of cups of water and dissolve a bouillon for flavor.

You can also follow the Spanish rice recipe using brown, long-grain, or short-grain rice.

In each case, you should modify the cooking time so that the rice gets properly cooked.

You can use another protein instead of chicken and do something similar to the Spanish rice and beans with pork, or use your favorite beef.

If you need a vegetarian rice recipe, then the Spanish rice and beans recipe is ideal for you since it replaces the chicken with beans, but it also has a great flavor.

And we got you covered if you are following a keto diet as well. Try the healthy keto Spanish rice and enjoy your diet.

Tips on Serving Spanish Chicken and Rice

spanish chicken and rice in a pot on a red kitchen cloth.

This Spanish chicken and rice casserole is a perfect complete meal. 

If you serve it on a large plate (this recipe is for 4 servings, you can double the ingredients for more) you won’t need a starter or a side dish.

That makes it one of the best dinners with rice, but you can also serve it for lunch.

If you are looking for a starter dish, you can serve this Spanish rice and chicken on smaller plates and use it for that purpose.

How to Store Spanish Chicken and Rice

How to Store Spanish Chicken and Rice. Ingredients and plastic containers in a fridge.

It doesn’t have the title of the best Spanish rice recipe for nothing: its ways of saving are lifesavers.

If you are passionate about meal prep, then you can follow this easy Spanish recipe, let it come to room temperature when it is ready, and store it in portions in the freezer.

Put it in containers or covered dishes (with a lid or plastic wrap) and freeze them. If you keep them portioned then you should only defrost what you plan to eat.

It can last up to 40 days in the freezer, then you must thaw it in the fridge the night before.

With this Spanish chicken and rice recipe, you can also store it in the fridge for up to 4 days.

Recipe Card: Spanish Chicken and Rice

Yield: 4

Spanish Chicken and Rice Recipe

Spanish chicken and rice in a pot on a table cloth

The number of Spanish dinner recipes is practically countless, but you should know that the Andalusians always have something up their sleeve.

One of these is the famous Spanish chicken and rice, one of the easy Spanish dishes that crossed the borders of the country and became loved all over the world.

In this recipe, we will focus on the traditional Spanish recipe to make this dish, and we will give you some tips so that you can adapt the recipe.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour

Ingredients

  • 2 cups (400g) white rice
  • 2 1/2 cups (580ml) chicken broth
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 onions
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 4 chicken breasts
  • Salt and pepper (for seasoning)
  • 1 teaspoon paprika (for seasoning, optional)
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil

Instructions

  1. Cut the onions, garlic, and red bell pepper into pieces the size you want.
  2. Put oil in a large pot and heat over medium heat. Once it sizzles, put the vegetables from the previous step to fry. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring constantly.
  3. If you are using Mexican vegetable mix, boil it before adding them to the Spanish chicken and rice dish. 
  4. Add the chicken breasts cut into strips or cubes. You can put them whole, but it will take longer to cook. Stir occasionally so it doesn't stick.
  5. In the meantime, wash, peel and cut the tomatoes. Put them in the pot once the chicken is cooked. Cook for another 5 minutes.
  6. Add the rice, first without extra liquid so that it can absorb all the flavors faster. Stir for 5 minutes.
  7. Now add the chicken broth, salt, pepper, and paprika. Cook for 15 minutes or until most of the liquid has evaporated, and it is more like a thick sauce.
  8. For the last step add the Mexican vegetable mix and you can verify that the seasoning is fine (add more salt or pepper if necessary). Then serve the chicken and Spanish rice while hot.

Notes

This is a pretty easy Spanish rice recipe, but you can make it even easier by using tomato sauce instead of fresh tomatoes.

If you want to do that replacement, you should add 1/2 cup (100ml) of your favorite tomato sauce.

Since this is a chicken with Spanish rice you should use white rice, but you can change it to whole wheat or brown rice (also modifying the cooking time).

Nutrition Information

Yield

4

Serving Size

1

Amount Per Serving Calories 642Total Fat 18.3gSaturated Fat 2.4gCholesterol 64mgSodium 539mgCarbohydrates 85.1gFiber 3.8gSugar 6.1gProtein 33g

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