Chipotle Chicken and Rice

Prep Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 15 mins

The chipotle chiles in this stovetop casserole lend an earthy, subtle heat to the dish. This make-ahead meal is perfect for dinner on a cool fall night.


  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

  • 8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs (about 2 pounds total)

  • Coarse salt and ground pepper

  • 1 medium red onion, thinly sliced lengthwise

  • 3 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped

  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin

  • 2 canned chipotle chiles in adobo, minced

  • 2 large tomatoes, diced large

  • 1 cup long-grain white rice

  • Lime wedges, for serving

  • Chopped cilantro leaves, for serving (optional)


  1. In a large Dutch oven or heavy pot, heat oil over medium-high. Season chicken on both sides with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Working in batches, brown chicken on both sides, about 6 minutes total; transfer to a plate.

  2. Reduce heat to medium. Add onion and saute until soft, about 5 minutes, scraping up any browned bits from bottom of pot (if necessary, add a bit of water to release browned bits).

  3. Add garlic, cumin, and chiles; cook until garlic is soft and fragrant, 2 minutes. Add tomatoes and 1 teaspoon salt and cook until tomatoes begin to break down and release their juices, 3 minutes. Stir in 1 cup water and return chicken and any accumulated juices to pot. Cover, reduce to a simmer, and cook 25 minutes.

  4. Remove several pieces of chicken and stir in rice, making sure it is completely submerged in liquid. Replace chicken, cover, and cook until rice is tender and liquid has been absorbed, 25 to 30 minutes more. Serve with lime wedges and cilantro if desired.



Quesadilla variation: To make a filling for quesadillas, cut chicken into bite-size pieces before cooking and omit the water and rice. Then simmer, uncovered (cooking time is the same).

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