Inexpensive, filling, and super easy, Puerto Rican chicken and sofrito yellow rice or arroz con pollo as know by many is the quintessential Hispanic comfort food.
I got my first introduction to the wonders of Latin flavors that didn’t involve the words nacho or taco living in New York as I teenager. I was surrounded by and in some ways submerged into the Hispanic culture. Most of my friends were black but there wasn’t a family on my block that didn’t make some version of arroz con pollo. My best friend literally did not cook without seasoning her food with a packet of Goya Sazon. Becoming more adventurous in my cooking, I’ve decided to recreate these delicious dishes with homemade ingredients.
I make my own versions of the key ingredients in Puerto Rican dishes- sazon and sofrito. They are truly effortless to make but if you decide to make this dish and want it to make even easier, go ahead and try the Goya brand of each. But all you need is chicken legs and thighs. You can use any part of the chicken you want but they taste the best to me in this dish. I’ve made it with wings and it’s still great. You must season the chicken well. I give you guides with my recipes, always season to your taste. But you should be able to recognize the spices or else you’re just eating bland chicken.
The same goes for seasoning the rice. My sofrito has enough salt so I only use a relatively small amount in the actual rice. The amount of salt that you use will depend on your taste and how much rice you actually make.
I also use jasmine rice that cooks in 15 minutes as indicated in the recipe instructions. Make sure that you follow the cooking time for your brand. I strongly suggest though, that you use a quick cooking rice. Otherwise, you run the risk of under or overcook the rice. Be sure to cover the rice as it cooks. I use a large pizza pan to cover my cast iron skillet since I don’t have a lid for it. After about halfway through, I like to check that fire isn’t too high by stirring to see if it’s sticking. Adjust the heat as needed and let it cook till the end. I promise it turns out nice and fluffy.
Don’t forget to pin, yum, and rate this recipe!
- 8 chicken leg quaters split
- 1/4 c olive oil or canola oil
- 2-3 tbsp sazon see notes
- 8/10 garlic cloves
- 3 c jasmine rice uncooked
- 1/2 c green lentils parbolied
- 4 1/2 c water
- 2 c sofrito see notes
- 2 tbsp olive or canola oil
- 2 tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp kosher salt or to taste
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Coat cleaned and dried chicken parts and garlic with 1/4 c of oil and sazon seasoning. Place a single layer of chicken in a large baking dish. Bake for 35-40 minute. The skin should be crispy.
- While the chicken bakes, partially cook the green lentils for 10-15 minutes in rapidly boiling water. Drain and set aside.
- In a large heavy bottom pot or skillet with a lid, heat 2 tbsp of oil. Add rice, lentils, turmeric, and salt and stir together until well coated. Follow with sofrito and stir well. Add water and cook covered over low-medium heat for 15-20 minutes or according to the rice packet instructions.
- Fluff rice and top with cooked chicken before serving.