Italian rice with chicken

Italian rice with chicken

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(128 ratings)

Prep: 10 mins Cook: 30 mins


Serves 2
This one-pan dish is simple, but really looks the business when you're trying to impress

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal620
  • fat22g
  • saturates5g
  • carbs62g
  • sugars0g
  • fibre6g
  • protein49g
  • salt1.5g
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  • 2 tbsp olive oil
    olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl

    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

  • 2 skinless boneless chicken breast fillets or 4 boneless thighs, cut into strips
  • 1 red onion, cut into 8 wedges
  • 2 orange peppers, halved, deseeded and sliced thickly



    Also known as capsicums, bell peppers, sweet peppers or by their colours, for example red and…

  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 100g long grain rice
  • 400g can chopped tomatoes
  • 300ml chicken stock
  • 4 tbsp ready-made pesto (you'll find long-life jars on the shelves with pasta sauces or more expensive fresh pots in the chiller cabinet)



    Pesto is a generic Italian name for any sauce made by pounding ingredients together.



  1. Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Heat the oil in a large, shallow ovenproof pan, add the chicken and cook for 3-4 mins until golden all over. Remove from pan and set aside.

  2. Add the onion and peppers, and cook for 3 mins or until lightly golden. Tip in the garlic and fry for a min. Stir in the rice, then the tomatoes, stock and reserved chicken. Turn up the heat and bring to the boil before transferring to the oven to cook, uncovered, for 20 mins. Season to taste and drizzle over the pesto before serving.

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Comments, questions and tips

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Bookgirls's picture
12th May, 2020
Had a rubbish day totally on my own, working from home. Debated a takeaway because I was grumpy. Stopped myself and made this instead and I am so glad I did. It may not be Italian, but it was easy, quick and delicious. I might add a splash of white wine next time I cook it.
greenplums's picture
1st Apr, 2020
A arts I understand the recipe is not exactly the same as Italian Cuisine let's say in Italy, but this author of BBC Good Food has had the guts to make the title 'Italian Rice and Chicken' and they made it as Italian as possible. We should be grateful of this as during this COVID-19 pandemic, we can enjoy some worldwide cuisine for once.
Ben Orr's picture
Ben Orr
28th Jan, 2020
Hey Amarts. Get over yourself!
31st Jan, 2018
Nothing italian about this - completely made up recipe, We woudl never make this in italy - why do you see the need to call it italian. You dont even use italian rice, all you have done is thrown a jar of pesto into a caserole - appalling.
2nd Jan, 2017
Cooked this tonight for the first time. As there were 4 of us I used 200grms of rice (basmati), 450mls of stock & 2 large cloves of garlic, but only 1 can of tomatoes. Cooked it in the oven (covered) for about 20/25mins & then let it stand for 5 mins. Finally I stired red chilli pesto (M&S) through it before serving. It was fab
14th Oct, 2016
My family really enjoyed this. It was simple to produce but very tasty, thank you!
27th Jun, 2016
Lovely recipe. Easy but took me a long time to do all the prep.
jo_ce2001's picture
8th Jun, 2016
Loved this! I used red and yellow peppers as that was what I had, and omitted the pesto as I didn't have any and didn't want to buy some just for this recipe. Added a little dried oregano for a it more flavour, but following the directions it turned out perfectly. I do suggest that the oven method works as long as you bring to the boil before you put in. Went down very well in my household and this will be a regular dish!
30th Apr, 2015
I doubled the recipe as I was cooking for 4 (well, actually 2 + 1 big eater) and continued cooking on the hob. I was dubious about using 2 cans of chopped tomatoes and I should have stuck with my instincts. It came out like porridge. Grated parmesan over it to "thicken" the sludge. The jambalaya recipe on the other hand works a treat. Think I'll be using that instead of this.
15th Sep, 2014
I fried the chicken with a dash of soy sauce, and added a few splashes of Worcester sauce sauce to give it a more smoky edge. Yum, and double yum.


21st Sep, 2016
Hi I'm cooking this tonight as a challenge from the wife and kids, really looking forward to it! As there are 4 of us do I double all the ingredients, daft question I know but I've gotta get it right, thanks.
Ted Andrassy
20th Feb, 2014
Hi there! This recipe looks delicious, its something that my mum would make. However I am very new to cooking, do I boil the rice first or just add it dry? I would really appreciate an answer asap as I plan to try it tonight! Cheers
goodfoodteam's picture
28th Feb, 2014
Hi Ted, thanks for getting in touch. In this recipe, you add the rice raw and it cooks in the sauce. Good luck! Hope it goes well.
27th Jun, 2016
made this for lunch, i added some authentic italian spice, i also cooked the chicken separate and i cooked it more like a paella in a pan rather than in the oven as i have never had good experiences cooking rice in the oven, omg this was awesome, loads left over for tonights dinner!!!
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