Weeknight Cooking

Chicken and Rice Never Looked So Good

July  9, 2015

There are 3 million chicken recipes on the internet. We're here to show you the good ones. Win, win.

Today: A New Orleans chicken and rice dish that's the ideal weeknight dinner—without taking any shortcuts.

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What if we told you that in the span of one hour, you could create a spice mix, braise a chicken, make a pot of mushroom stock, create delicious dirty rice from scratch, and feed your entire family (or five friends) out of one skillet? Jenny H.'s recipe for Creole Chicken with Mushroom Dirty Rice doesn't take any shortcuts (no store-bought stock or boxed mix of dirty rice), but somehow yields a homemade meal that's packed with a rich, earthy flavor in the span of one episode of True Detective. The depth of flavor comes from loads of garlic, serrano chile, mushrooms, and tomatoes. The only real challenge here is to keep yourself from dipping your fork into the crispy bits of rice along the edges before serving—which you can do by just setting the entire pan on a trivet on the table. Dig in.

Creole Chicken with Mushroom Dirty Rice

Serves 5

For the creole seasoning:

1 1/2 tablespoons pimenton (smoked paprika)
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon kosher salt
2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons coarsely ground black pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons onion powder
1 1/2 teaspoons crushed dried oregano
1 1/2 teaspoons crushed dried thyme
1 1/2 teaspoons crushed dried basil

For the chicken and rice:

1/2 cup dried porcini mushrooms
5 bone-in, skin-on free-range chicken thighs
2 1/2 teaspoons sea salt, divided
5 teaspoons creole seasoning (see Step 1), divided
Grapeseed oil, for frying
3 cups assorted mushrooms, such as maitake, shiitake, and oyster
2 cups yellow onion, diced
5 large cloves of garlic, minced
1 cup diced celery 
1 1/2 cups diced green bell pepper
1/2 serrano chile, diced
3 fresh bay leaves
1/4 teaspoon roughly chopped fresh oregano
1/4 teaspoon fresh thyme
1 cup crushed tomatoes, juice and all
1 cup long grain rice, such as basmati
Thinly sliced scallions and chopped parsley, as garnish

Save (and print) the full recipe here.

Photo by James Ransom

Is there an undiscovered Food52 chicken recipe you love? Send us a paragraph or two at [email protected] about why you love it, and it could be next week's Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner.

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See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Geoffrey Waterhouse
    Geoffrey Waterhouse
  • Amy Ratner
    Amy Ratner
  • Insomanic Preet
    Insomanic Preet
  • Keely bee
    Keely bee
  • Robert
I eat everything.


Geoffrey W. February 4, 2016
For the Food52 Editors' Comments: What proportions for the brine?
Amy R. February 4, 2016
This looks good, but I don't like thighs. Would it work with chicken breasts or would they get too dry?
Insomanic P. July 28, 2015
this looks so delicious. i am going to try it this weekend. before this i found some good recipes at http://betterfoodforall.sobeys.com/recipes
Keely B. July 24, 2015
I made this on Tues this week, trying it with brown rice. The flavours were great but my rice never got tender, even after an hour of cooking. It was also soupy, I used a dutch oven and in the end let the liquid boil off. Not sure what I did wrong!
I'd love to make it again but how to get the brown rice right?
Robert August 16, 2015
I had the exact same problem with brown rice and I also used a dutch oven, so I feel better that it wasn't just me. I actually extended the cooking time to 55 minutes, and still the rice wasn't tender. When I try again, I am going to try to make the brown rice separately and then add later to the dish.
cookinalong February 4, 2016
Don't assume you did anything wrong! If your brown rice is old, it can take longer, much longer to cook. The oil in the bran that surrounds the brown rice can go rancid if it's been on the shelf a long time, or if your kitchen is very warm. I never heard of anyone getting sick from it, but it absolutely affects the cooking time. I usually keep mine in the fridge for that reason. Also, it helps to soak it for an hour or so before cooking. It does shorten the cooking time. I only make it when my youngest son is coming for dinner. He won't touch white rice! The rest of us prefer good old Carolina. Great for soaking up that great sauce.