Arroz con Pollo (Chicken and Rice)

July 30, 2019 (Last Updated: January 27, 2020)
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A Cuban classic, Arroz con Pollo or Chicken and Rice is a one pot meal that has it all. Beautifully seasoned rice, juicy chicken pieces, the works.

Chicken and rice with peas and pimentos served on a plate

One of my favorite episodes of I Love Lucy is called Job Switching. It’s the one where Lucy and Ethel switch places with Ricky and Fred. The girls find jobs while the boys take care of the home. The most memorable scene of the episode is definitely the chocolate factory. But another one of my favorites is when Ricky tells Fred he is making the Cuban dish arroz con pollo, or chicken with rice, for dinner. Then all hell breaks lose. Take a look!

In honor of this hilarious moment in television history, I’m sharing a much less messy recipe for arroz con pollo. It’s easy to make, very comforting, and full of flavor. The peas, asparagus, and pimientos brighten up the dish, while the chicken and rice are tender and comforting. By cooking everything together in one pot you really get fantastic flavor through every component in the dish.

I actually used a mixture of chicken parts in this recipe. This included 2 drumsticks and 2 thighs from a butchered whole chicken. I also added a bone-in breast cut into 3 pieces for a half portion of the recipe below. It made about 4 to 5 servings, but the full recipe for up to 10 servings follows.

Arroz con pollo (chicken and rice) in a Dutch oven

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Arroz con pollo, chicken with rice with peas, asparagus, and pimentos

Arroz con Pollo (Chicken and Rice)

A Cuban classic, Arroz con Pollo or Chicken and Rice is a one pot meal that has it all. Beautifully seasoned rice, juicy chicken pieces, the works.
Prep Time 25 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Total Time 1 hr 10 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Cuban
Servings 10 servings
Calories 597 kcal



  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium green bell pepper stemmed, cored, seeded and cut into rounds
  • 3 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs and drumsticks
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 (12-ounce) bottle of pilsner-style beer divided
  • 1/2 pound asparagus rinsed, trimmed and cut into 1-inch long pieces
  • 1 medium yellow onion grated
  • 1 cup jarred pimientos drained and sliced
  • 1 cup English peas fresh or frozen
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 3 large garlic cloves peeled and mashed into a paste
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 1 cube chicken bouillon
  • 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground achiote seeds or Bijol seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
  • 3 1/2 cups Valencia or similar short-grain rice rinsed


  • Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
  • Season the chicken pieces with salt and pepper on both sides. Heat the olive oil over medium-high heat in an ovenproof, 6-quart heavy pot or Dutch oven until hot but not smoking. Add the green pepper to the oil. Working in batches, brown the chicken on both sides, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Set aside the browned chicken and repeat with the remaining pieces. Remove the green pepper and discard.
  • To deglaze the pot, add the wine and bring to a simmer, scraping up the browned bits. Return the browned chicken to the pot. Add the remaining ingredients except for the rice, and half the beer and part of the pimientos to add at the end. Bring to a simmer.
  • Stir in the rice and simmer over medium to medium-low heat for 10 minutes. Remove the pot from direct heat, cover with a tight-fitting lid, and set in the preheated oven, and bake until the rice is tender but still moist, about 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Remove from the oven and immediately pour in the remaining beer. Garnish with the reserved pimientos.

Notes & Nutrition

  • This recipe uses kosher salt (aka cooking salt, kitchen salt, coarse salt outside of the US). If you are using table salt, definitely scale down the salt as that is a saltier type of salt! The type of salt will make a big difference in how salty your food tastes, so keep that in mind.
Adapted from The Cuban Table
Servings 10.0 * calories 597 * Total Fat 23 g * Saturated Fat 5 g * Monounsaturated Fat 8 g * Polyunsaturated Fat 1 g * Trans Fat 0 g * Cholesterol 108 mg * Sodium 772 mg * Potassium 230 mg * Total Carbohydrate 56 g * Dietary Fiber 2 g * Sugars 4 g * Protein 33 g
*All nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered estimates. Actual nutritional content will vary with brands used, measuring methods, portion sizes and more.*

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Chicken and rice in a Dutch oven

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