This baked Mexican chicken over rice features amazing flavors, tender chicken marinated in a simple adobo mixture plus fluffy and flavored Spanish rice. All made in one pan and cooked in the oven!
Are you thinking about making baked Mexican chicken and not sure what spice and herbs to use? Are you looking for a dish that packs some heat? Try this super easy and tasteful recipe.
This recipe is perfect for those people who don’t mind a little heat in their dish and for people who like to meal prep their meals so they can enjoy them on another day.
Why You Should Make This Recipe
- Is Easy. The kind of recipe you just chop some stuff, throw everything in a pot, season, and cook in the oven.
- Is Flavorful. The super-easy recipe is packed with Mexican flavors. From the earthy taste of the cumin, the peppery hint of the black pepper, to the spicy note of the chili powder, all those amazing flavors complement each other beautifully.
- Is Customizable. Throw some peans in the mix, or mushrooms, or make it with cubbed chicken breast.
- Is Rightly Spicy. When it comes to spicing up your meals, this chicken with peppers and onions over rice will be a game-changer because is spicy but not too much.
- Is bright. Just look at those colors! I don’t know you, but I love colorful and beautiful dishes, everything starts with one look, don’t you think?
The Cooking Method
To make things even easier, this chicken over rice is made in one pan only and cooked in the oven. This means fewer dishes to wash and a stress-free meal with little effort.
Perfect for those with busy lives but that still want to enjoy a homemade meal every now and then.
- Use long-grain rice, such as Mexican rice, Jasmine, or Basmati. Other types like Arborio or Roma add too much starch to the recipe and you’ll end with mushy rice.
- Want to tone down the heat? Clean chilies by removing seeds and veins, and leave out the chili powder.
- Play with flavors and aromas. If you don’t like some spices, leave them out or replace them with your favorite ones. Or you can also swap them for fresh herbs like chives, parsley, etc.
How To Make Baked Mexican Chicken Over Rice
Add all spices and oil for the chicken marinade to a medium bowl and mix well. Add chicken to the bowl and coat evenly on all sides. Cover with cling film and place on the fridge for at least 30 minutes (or even better, overnight).
Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C) and lightly grease a baking dish about 10″ x 15″ (25 x 35 cm). Add onions, jalapenos (or bell peppers), salt, pepper, cumin, oil, paprika, and tomato paste to the baking dish.
Pour over the chicken stock (it needs to be hot! please read the notes below) and give it a good mix. Add the rice and mix well, then arrange the chicken over.
Cover with foil and bake for about 30 minutes. Uncover the dish and drizzle the chicken with a little bit of oil.
Keep baking, uncovered, for another 20 minutes or just until the chicken is cooked through.
The cooking time will depend on the size of your chicken, larger pieces needs more time for cooking, but overall you’ll need from 50 to 60 minutes for your chicken to cook through.
Remove the chicken from the dish, fluffy rice with a fork, and return the chicken on top.
Cover with foil and allow the baked Mexican chicken to rest for another 10 minutes before serving garnished with cilantro.
How To Serve
You can enjoy the tender, spiced chicken over the flavored rice and just garnish it with some freshly chopped cilantro. I also love to serve this recipe with a side of grilled corn, refried beans, or a green salad, like this easy Mexican cabbage salad.
How To Store And Reheat
This baked Mexican chicken is perfect to make ahead and store for busy nights.
Place leftovers in an airtight container and store them in the fridge for up to 3 days. If you want to cook it and won’t eat it the same day, allow the dish to cool down before storing.
You can also freeze this dish. Once cooled, place it in a container, add two layers of foil on top then close the lid tightly. Freeze for up to 1 month.
Before reheating, make sure you thaw the dish slowly overnight inside the refrigerator.
Reheat the baked Mexican chicken with rice in the microwave for a couple of minutes or pop it into the oven, covered, for about 5 minutes at 400°F/200°C.
Chicken Over Rice Mexican Style
- 1 Baking dish about 10″ x 15″ (25 x 35 cm).
For chicken & marinade
- 6 chicken thighs or drumsticks (skinless)
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- ½ tsp ground cumin
- 2 tsp paprika (hot or sweet)
- ½ tsp chili powder
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- ½ tsp ground black pepper
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 ½ cups long-grain white rice (Mexican rice, basmati, jasmine, etc.)
- 1 large onion (finely chopped)
- ½ cup jalapeños or Anaheim peppers (diced)
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 Tbsp cilantro (chopped)
- 4 Tbsp oil
- ½ Tbsp tomato paste
- ¼ tsp ground black pepper
- ¼ tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp paprika
- 2 ¾ cups chicken stock (boiling hot)
- 1 tsp salt (read notes)
- Add all spices and oil for the chicken marinade to a medium bowl and mix well.
- Add chicken to the bowl and coat evenly all sides. Cover and place on the fridge for at least 30 minutes (or overnight).
- Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C) and lightly grease a baking dish about 10″ x 15″ (25 x 35 cm).
- Add onions, jalapenos, salt, pepper, cumin, oil, paprika and tomato paste to the baking dish.
- Pour over the chicken stock (make sure it's hot/boiling) and give it a good mix. Add the rice and mix well, then arrange the chicken.
- Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes.
- Uncover the dish and drizzle the chicken with a little bit of oil.
- Keep baking, uncovered, for another 20 minutes or just until chicken is cooked through (read notes!).
- Remove the chicken from the dish, fluffy rice with a fork and return the chicken on top of rice.
- Cover with foil and allow to rest for another 10 minutes before serving garnished with cilantro.
- The cooking time will depend on the size of your chicken, larger pieces needs more time for cooking, but overall you’ll need from 50 to 60 minutes for your chicken to cook through.
- If you want the chicken to brown a little more on top, place the dish under the broiler for 3-4 minutes.
- When you add salt to rice mixture, please take in mind what kind or brand of chicken stock you’re using. Some brands have more salt on it than others and you might need not salt at all or maybe add a little bit more, depending.
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Maricruz Avalos Flores is a Mexican cook and photographer living in Italy where she shares authentic Mexican & Italian recipes that can be easily made at home using easy-to-find ingredients.