Elegant Chicken and Rice Dinner

Chicken and rice are a very common combination, so why not assemble it  into a beautiful presentation that will impress your guests and is served in  individual portions for each person? The chicken is so tender and juicy. The rice is creamy and soaks up the flavors of the chicken as well. Since chicken thighs will not dry out as they roast like chicken breast, it’s a great option to serve it with stuffing, baking long enough to allow the flavors to meld into a creamy goodness.

Yields: 6 servings

Ingredients:

6 skin-on chicken thighs, with the bone removed

1 cup rice

1 onion, finely diced

1 carrot, finely shredded

1/4 cup mozzarella or provolone cheese, finely shredded

1 garlic clove, minced

2 tablespoons mayonaise

2 sprigs of thyme, minced, optional

Cook the rice according to package instructions.

Debone the chicken thighs. Leave the skin on. IMG_9868 (550x367)

Melt 1 Tablespoon of butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add onions, season with salt and pepper. Cover and cook for 3-5 min, or until onions are soft and translucent. Add carrots, season with salt and pepper. Cover and cook until soft, another 3-5 min. Add to rice. Mix in the rest of the ingredients. Take 1/4 -1/3 cup of rice stuffing and form into a log. Place in the middle of the chicken thigh (season chicken with salt and pepper) and wrap around the rice.

IMG_1382If there is any rice left over, spread in the glass casserole dish.

I actually like to have a little extra rice, so I intentionally make more and spread it in an even layer under the chicken and then serve it on the side.

Place in an 8×8 inch casserole dish. IMG_1406Cover with aluminum foil and bake at 375 degrees for 45-55 min. Uncover and bake about 15 more min, or until chicken skin is golden brown. If the chicken is cooked through and the skin is still not crispy, broil for a few minutes. IMG_1527
Make Ahead:

This is another recipe that can be made ahead of time; you know I love that:) Prep it completely, cover, refrigerate and bake when needed. Just let the casserole pan warm up a bit before you put it in the oven, at least half an hour; the chicken will cook faster and more evenly and you won’t run the risk of a shattered casserole dish. This is a great option for entertaining. You can even make it the day before! Your guests will be so impressed.IMG_3542

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Elegant Chicken and Rice Dinner

  • Author: Olga's Flavor Factory
  • Prep Time: 40 mins
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Total Time: 1 hour 40 mins
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Category: Entree

Ingredients

Scale
  • 6 skin-on chicken thighs, with the bone removed
  • 1 cup rice
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 1 carrot, finely shredded
  • 1/4 cup mozzarella or provolone cheese, finely shredded
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 2 sprigs of thyme, minced, optional

Instructions

  1. Cook the rice according to package instructions.
  2. Debone the chicken thighs. Leave the skin on.
  3. Melt 1 Tablespoon of butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add onions, season with salt and pepper. Cover and cook for 3-5 min, or until onions are soft and translucent. Add carrots, season with salt and pepper. Cover and cook until soft, another 3-5 min.
  4. Add the onion and carrot to rice. Mix in the rest of the ingredients.
  5. Take 1/4 -1/3 cup of rice stuffing and form into a log. Place in the middle of the chicken thigh (season chicken with salt and pepper) and wrap around the rice.
  6. If there is any rice left over, spread in the glass casserole dish. I actually like to have a little extra rice, so I intentionally make more and spread it in an even layer under the chicken and then serve it on the side.
  7. Place in an 8×8 inch casserole dish. Cover with aluminum foil and bake at 375 degrees for 45-55 min.
  8. Uncover and bake about 15 more minutes, or until chicken skin is golden brown. If the chicken is cooked through and the skin is still not crispy, broil for a few minutes.

Make Ahead:

  1. This is another recipe that can be made ahead of time; you know I love that:) Prep it completely, cover, refrigerate and bake when needed. Just let the casserole pan warm up a bit before you put it in the oven, at least half an hour; the chicken will cook faster and more evenly and you won’t run the risk of a shattered casserole dish. This is a great option for entertaining. You can even make it the day before! Your guests will be so impressed.

 

53 Comments

    • Olga K.

      Yes, Tanya, I trim off as much of the fat as possible. You’re right, chicken thighs are very fatty, so they need to be trimmed. I trim them for any recipe that I’m using.

  • Katia B.

    This really delicious, my husband said “wow, this is packed with flavor”! :)) One thing is that my baking dish was full of liquid by the time chicken cooked, I drained it as much as I could and put it in the oven for another 20 min. Does this happen when you cook it? The rice underneath turned into risotto, which everybody loved. Thanks for the recipe, Olga!

    • Olga K.

      Hi Katya,
      The chicken thighs are very juicy, so there will be some liquid. Like you said, the rice turns into a risotto – we love it too.
      I always trim as much fat from the meat and the skin as possible, so that helps quite a bit.

    • Vera

      I cook the rice half way for this dish. That way, when it’s cooking with the chicken, it absorbs the juices and there’s not much excess liquid.

  • Natasha

    This is VERY delicious, and convenient. I prep it the night before and just bake it the next day for dinner. We love it too that rice turns into risotto – so flavorful!! Thank you for sharing!!

  • Yuliya

    Hi Olga, i buy boneless-skinless chicken thighs. Will they be fine? Or will there be a big difference without the skin on top?

    • olgak7

      Hi Lena,
      Mix the cheese and mayo along with the rest of the ingredients in the rice mixture. The mayo and the cheese do not go on top of the chicken.

  • Irina

    Made this last night for dinner and my husband loved it! Thank you for the yummy recipe. Will make again in the future.

  • Candice

    This is a very good recipe but I made mine with boneless chicken breast( all I had) and it was a little bit on the dry side… Still tasty ! ….so as you stated in the recipe to use skin on thighs…. I think this is the best way to go… I will be making it again but next time exactly as your recipe states To do!

    • olgak7

      Hi Candice! Chicken thighs are definitely a lot juicier, but I understand that sometimes you have to use what you have on hand. Thank you for taking the time to write.

  • Michelle Cole

    Yes they do sell boneless/skinless thighs at the market you pay more for them doing the trimming, and Ive shopped at Vons/Safeway, Stater Brothers, Kroger they all carry them.

  • Neysa

    Tried it…..Was really tasty .Very different from our Indian food … I am delightfully surprised.

  • Nadia

    This was amazing Olga! The whole family enjoyed it, they asked to put it on rotation! Thanks to your sister’s Easter vlog for cooking it and sending me to your site. As a 1/2 Russian/Australian this is truly the comfort food I grew up with, but never had it before that I can remember.

  • Cristina Moravec-Kossegi

    I saw your sister make this on a FB video. She had a link to your recipe. I finally made it today after scrolling through your website for a bit. I am a nurse too. I graduated and took my boards in NY 10 years before you did in 1996. I got my 1st job and got married that same year. I have been a night nurse the whole time. I have been working in the same ER for almost 25 years. I also have 2 boys but they are grown. They are both studying to be nurses too.
    Everyone loved this recipe. My husband is a very picky eater and he actually had 3rds. He rarely takes 2nds. My 17 and 21 year old sons loved it too. I guess I should have made more. There isn’t much left over. The chicken did give off more liquid than I expected, so I just poured off as much as I could before serving. I added a package of riced cauliflower and sauteed mushrooms to stretch the rice. It came out delicious! Thank you so much for such a great dinner!

    • olgak7

      I’m so glad you and your family enjoyed the Chicken and Rice dinner. Thank you so much for taking the time to write. It’s always so lovely to “meet” some of my readers. So nice that you are a nurse also:).

  • Joanna

    Saw your sister make it in a video, pinned the recipe last week, and made it today. It was so delicious. My husband said it needs to be on rotation… easy and elegant. Only change I made was I used boneless skinless thighs (that I trimmed) as that’s what I had and honestly, wouldn’t eat the skin anyway. Chicken remained juicy and flavorful. It’s just not as pretty without the skin, but I don’t really care as long as it’s good. Thank you! I’ve pinned other recipes. Can’t wait to try!

  • Irene

    I used exact proportion from the recipe, but rice was still too fluffy with all other ingredients mixed in, couldn’t make a log. I ended up cooking chicken on top of bed of rice, still was very good. What should I do to make rice more sticky?

    • olgak7

      Hi Irene.
      Sometimes different types of rice have different amounts of starch. Add a bit more mayonnaise and/or cheese and that should help. Also, when you are making the “logs” it helps to press them firmly with your hands so they stick better without adding too much extra mayo. You can also try using sour cream or Greek yogurt instead too. Hope that helps!

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