Easy Chicken Rice Pilaf Recipe (video)

ukrainian chicken rice or chicken plov in copper pan

Sharing my mom’s easy and delicious chicken rice pilaf recipe, or ‘chicken plov’ as it’s called in Ukraine! This aromatic Ukrainian recipe is made with chicken, onion, carrots and rice seasoned with just a touch of pepper and coriander. It’s an easy rice dish that you can have ready in no time! Try serving it with pickles and marinated tomatoes for a traditional meal. Traditional Uzbek plov is made with beef or lamb – find that recipe in my new cookbook, Beyond Borscht!

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How to Make Chicken Rice

You’ll love how easy this chicken recipe is to make! Start by choosing your chicken – both chicken breast and chicken thigh will work well for this recipe. Even bone in chicken thigh would work well. If using boneless chicken, cube it into small, bite-sized pieces.

  • Brown the chicken all over, frying for about 6 to 8 minutes, just until browned all over. At this point the chicken doesn’t need to be cooked all the way; it will finish cooking with the rice. If using bone-in meat, cook it for a few minutes longer.

After removing the chicken, add some butter to the pan. I LOVE using butter because it adds so much flavor! Saute the onion and carrots until tender, then add the garlic, coriander and cumin. I like to lightly toast the spices so they release more aroma.

  • Return the chicken to the pan, add rice, season with salt and pepper and add the chicken broth. Cover and cook the dish according to the rice package instructions. Garnish the rice with chopped parsley and enjoy with pickles, sour cream and/or marinated tomatoes. For reheating, refry the rice pilaf in a hot pan with a drizzle of oil!

easy chicken rice with chicken breast, onions and carrots

Tips for Cooking Rice

This chicken rice pilaf can be made with a variety of rice types – I recommend using Basmati long-grain rice. It’s an aromatic, long-grain rice that cooks quickly and remains fluffy. You can also use brown rice or even buckwheat for this recipe. Whichever rice type you choose, follow the cooking instructions on the rice packaging. Some rice types require more or less liquids/broth and some may require longer or shorter cooking times.

More Recipes!

Enjoyed this easy chicken recipe? Check out some of the other recipes I have on my website that you’re sure to love!

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Easy Chicken Rice Pilaf video recipe

Easy Chicken Rice Pilaf Recipe (video)

20 mins prep + 20 mins cook
6 servings
Easy chicken pilaf, aka chicken 'plov'! My mom's recipe for an easy, chicken dinner!

Ingredients 

  • 1 1/2 lbs chicken breast or thigh; cubed
  • oil for frying
  • salt and black pepper
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 3 medium carrots, diced
  • 6 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/8 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp salt; add more to taste
  • ground black pepper
  • 2 cups long-grain Basmati rice
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 2 tbsp fresh chopped parsley
  • pickles and pickled tomatoes, for serving
  • sour cream, for serving; optional

Instructions

  • Prepare the chicken first - both chicken breast and chicken thigh will work well for this recipe. Even bone in chicken thigh would work well. If using boneless chicken, cube it into small, bite-sized pieces. Preheat a large saute pan over medium-high heat and add a drizzle of oil. Fry the chicken in two batches to avoid overcrowding the pan. First season the chicken generously with salt and pepper, then brown the chicken all over, frying for about 6 to 8 minutes, just until browned all over. At this point the chicken doesn't need to be cooked all the way; it will finish cooking with the rice. Once browned, remove from the pan and set aside.
  • Into the same pan, add the butter and allow it to melt over medium heat. Add the diced onion and carrot and saute for 4 to 5 minutes, until the onion is translucent and tender. Add the garlic, cumin and coriander and continue cooking for another 30 seconds to 1 minute, cooking the garlic briefly. Return the chicken to the pan and add in the rice, salt and ground black pepper, to taste. Stir everything together using a spatula. Watch my video recipe to see how I do it!
  • Pour the chicken broth into the pan but do not stir; let the chicken broth stand over the chicken and rice. Close the pan with a tight fitting lid and bring the rice to simmer over medium heat. Reduce the heat to low and cook the rice for 20 to 25 minutes, until the liquids are absorbed and the rice is done. Remove the rice from heat and let it stand for another 10 minutes. Fluff the rice with a large fork and garnish with chopped fresh parsley before serving with a side of pickles, pickled tomatoes and/or sour cream. For reheating, fry the rice pilaf in a hot pan with a drizzle of oil!
  • TIP: This chicken rice pilaf can be made with a variety of rice types - I recommend using Basmati long-grain rice. It's an aromatic, long-grain rice that cooks quickly and remains fluffy. You can also use brown rice or even buckwheat for this recipe. Whichever rice type you choose, follow the cooking instructions on the rice packaging. Some rice types require more or less liquids/broth and some may require longer or shorter cooking times. 

Nutrition

Calories: 444kcal | Carbohydrates: 56g | Protein: 30g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 83mg | Sodium: 1540mg | Potassium: 773mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 5363IU | Vitamin C: 19mg | Calcium: 59mg | Iron: 2mg