I grew up on this classic Cuban dinner of rice with chicken. My mom’s Cuban arroz con pollo recipe is fairly universal to most Cuban homes, but the food tradition she instilled in us will never be forgotten. The smoky spices of this savory dish is the definition of comfort food for me. They truly are the most important part of Cuban Arroz con Pollo. Give this arroz con pollo recipe a try for your next family dinner!
Arroz con Pollo Recipe
4 chicken quarters (dark meat), skin on and cut into pieces
1/2 cup olive oil for frying
1 large onion, chopped
1 large red pepper, chopped
4 cloves garlic, crushed
2 cups chicken broth
1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
1/2 teaspoon Bijol Powder or Saffron
1 bay leaf
2 teaspoons oregano
2 teaspoons cumin, ground
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 cups rice
1/2 cup frozen green baby peas
Sauté the chicken in a large pot, browning on both sides. Season with salt, pepper and dashes of cumin. Remove chicken once fat has been released.
Add a little olive oil to the same pan you fried the chicken in, and sauté the onion and red pepper until the onion is translucent. Add the crushed garlic and cook an additional minute or two, stirring frequently.
Return chicken to the same pot with chicken broth, cooked onions and green pepper, tomato sauce, Bijol, bay leaf, oregano, cumin, salt, and pepper. Add the rice and stir to coat and full submerge it. Bring to a boil and reduce heat. When the rice has absorbed some of the liquid, cover and simmer on low for about 30-45 minutes, or until the rice is fully cooked. Add the frozen peas during the last five minutes of cooking only.
Tip of advice – you might be tempted to make this Cuban Arroz con Pollo with chicken breasts, but because of the extended cook time, I wouldn’t suggest it. Pick moist dark meat chicken cuts, like chicken legs and thighs, to ensure a tasty meal.
We bought our leg quarters at Smart and Final. They’re on sale next week for $0.79/lb, making this meal very affordable to make when feeding a big family. Follow #ChooseSmart on Twitter for more recipes, featuring items on sale at Smart and Final.
*Disclosure: I am a member of the Collective Bias™ Social Fabric® Community. This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias™ and Smart & Final #CBias #SocialFabric. All opinions and images are 100% my own.