Juicy chicken, spicy chorizo and tender vegetables nestled in a bed of seasoned delicious rice.
This Spanish Chicken is all cooked in one pan, with the oven doing most of the work.
A fantastic family dinner that you can put the table and let everyone dig in.
Juicy, golden-skinned chicken and spicy chorizo, served on a bed of tender basmati rice. Yes, this is some hearty comfort food!
There's a little bit of upfront work in the browning of the chicken and giving the vegetables and chorizo a quick fry - but once you've got that rice and stock mixed in, you can stick it in the oven and relax until dinner time.
So much flavour is absorbed by that rice. And those little nuggets of chorizo? They're worth fighting over.
It also makes great leftovers. If you have any left, then you can simply reheat in the microwave the next day for lunch to look forward to.
What do we need?
I like to use bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs for this dish they're more tender than chicken breast, and the skin from the chicken releases flavourful fats into the dish - which makes it even tastier!
I usually use 6 chicken thighs - two each for me and Chris, and one each for the kids. If you're serving 4 adults, you should just be able to fit 8 chicken thighs in the pan (keep the rest of the quantities the same).
- Swap out the bone-in chicken thighs for boneless chicken thighs or drumsticks (or a mix of both).
- Add in extra veggies - green beans, peas and leeks all make a great addition.
- Add a little spice with some sliced fresh chillies (add-in with the peppers) or dried chilli flakes (add with the garlic).
How to make this Chicken and Rice Dish
**Full recipe with detailed steps in the recipe card at the end of this post**.
- Season the chicken with a mixture of salt, garlic salt, black pepper, white pepper, and paprika.
- Brown the chicken in a casserole pan with a little oil. Remove the chicken from the pan and place on a plate.
- Add chopped onion, celery and red pepper to the pan, cook for 3-4 minutes.
- Add in sliced chorizo and cook for a further two minutes, then add in oregano, garlic and tomato puree.
- Stir in the rice.
- Pour in the wine and stock and give everything a stir.
- Place the chicken back in the pan, skin-side-up.
- Arrange the chopped tomatoes around the chicken and the lemon slices on and around the chicken, then place a lid on the pan and cook in the oven at 170C/325F for 35-40 minutes.
Take out of the oven and sprinkle with parsley before serving.
This is a difficult one to scale up, as this recipe uses a large pan - so it's hard to stuff any more in there. You can just about get in 8 chicken thighs if you're looking to serve 4 adults (I use 6 chicken thighs in the recipe - 2 for me and Chris and one each for the kids).
You could replace the bone-in chicken thighs with boneless chicken thigh pieces, then serve it with a crisp salad and/or garlic bread to make these quantities serve up to 6 people. If you're doing that, I'd use approx 8-10 chicken thigh fillets for 6 people.
You can scale down by halving the recipe and using a smaller pan.
Yes, if you're not keen on bone-in meat or you're looking to reduce the calories, you can replace with boneless, skinless chicken thighs. I would use 2 boneless thighs per serving.
Skin-on chicken thighs do release flavourful oils into the dish, which makes it taste more sumptuous, but it's still delicious with skinless, boneless chicken thighs.
Chicken breast is a little drier than thigh, but it will still work, and it will still be very tasty. I'd go with one chicken breast per serving.
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Spanish Chicken and Rice Recipe
- ¼ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp garlic salt
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- ¼ tsp white pepper
- 1 tsp paprika
- 6 chicken thighs - (bone-in, skin on)
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 onion - finely chopped
- 2 sticks of celery - finely chopped
- 1 red bell pepper - sliced into strips
- 100 g (3.5 oz) chorizo - sliced into half-moons
- 1 tsp oregano
- 2 cloves garlic - minced
- 2 tbsp tomato puree - paste for US
- 250 g (1 cup) basmati rice
- 4 tbsp (60 ml) white wine
- 900 ml (3 ¾ cups) hot chicken stock
- 10 cherry (grape) tomatoes - sliced in half
- 1 lemon - sliced into half moons
- 1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
- Preheat the oven to 170C/325F (fan).
- Mix together the salt, garlic salt, black pepper, white pepper, and paprika. Rub onto the skin of the chicken thighs¼ tsp salt, ¼ tsp garlic salt, ¼ tsp black pepper, ¼ tsp white pepper, 1 tsp paprika, 6 chicken thighs
- Heat the oil in a large, wide cast iron pan (or a heavy-based, ovenproof large frying pan) over a medium-high heat.1 tbsp vegetable oil
- Place the chicken thighs in the pan, skin-side down. Cook for 4-5 minutes until the skin is golden brown. Turn oven and cook for another couple of minutes.
- Remove the chicken from the pan and place on a plate.
- Add in the chopped onion, celery, and red pepper. Cook for 3-4 minutes, until the vegetables start to soften.1 onion, 2 sticks of celery, 1 red bell pepper
- Add in the chorizo and cook for a further two minutes.100 g (3.5 oz) chorizo
- Add in the oregano, garlic, and tomato puree. Stir, then add in the rice. Stir again to coat the rice in the oil.1 tsp oregano, 2 cloves garlic, 2 tbsp tomato puree, 250 g (1 cup) basmati rice
- Pour in the wine and stock, give everything a stir, then place the chicken, skin-side-up in the rice.4 tbsp (60 ml) white wine, 900 ml (3 ¾ cups) hot chicken stock
- Arrange the chopped tomatoes around the chicken and the lemon slices on and around the chicken.10 cherry (grape) tomatoes, 1 lemon
- Place a lid on the pan (or cover tightly in foil) and place in the oven for 35-40 minutes, checking on the rice a couple of times in the last 10 minutes, until the rice is tender.
- Take out of the oven and sprinkle with parsley before serving.1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
Cook the dish, then cool as quickly as possible, cover and refrigerate. If you've made the whole dish ahead, take the cooked dish out of the refrigerator an hour before heating up to take off some of the chill, then place in the oven at 170C/325F with the lid on for about 30-35 minutes.
Check about halfway through reheating and add a splash of hot water or stock if it's looking a little dry.
Ensure the dish is piping hot all the way through before serving.
If you're just reheating leftovers, make sure the leftovers are quickly cooled, covered, and refrigerated. Then you can reheat in the microwave in individual portions until piping hot throughout. This should take around 4-5 minutes. Will it freeze ok? It's best when cooked and served fresh, but you can freeze it.
Quickly cool, cover and freeze in individual portions. Defrost overnight in the refrigerator and reheat as per the ''make-ahead' instructions above. Nutritional information is per serving. This recipe serves 6 people.
This post was first published in July 2015. Updated October 2020 with new photos, video, tips and a few upgrades to the recipe.
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