One-Pan Lime Chicken with Cilantro Rice

It doesn’t get any easier than a one-pan meal, and this One-Pan Lime Chicken with Cilantro Rice is as simple as it sounds. This effortless meal pairs juicy, tangy chicken thighs with lime-infused cilantro and basmati rice. It can easily feed the entire family and is also great as a meal prep idea.

Looking for other one-pan meal ideas? Then check out my One-Pan Creamy Tuscan Chicken and One Pan Chicken and Mushroom Orzo.

Lime Chicken with Cilantro Rice

It’s hard to say which part of this dish is the start of the show — the chicken or the rice!

The cilantro rice is made using chicken stock, lime zest & juice, garlic, a few simple seasonings, and of course, fresh cilantro. It is the freshest-tasting rice you’ll ever enjoy. The chicken thighs will add flavor from the combination of seasonings and spices. And when they are joined together to simmer…it is all uphill from there. The rice is finished with a drizzle of fresh lime juice and freshly chopped cilantro.

Ingredients you’ll need:

  • For the chicken thighs, you will need bone-in chicken thighs that you’ll season with smoked paprika, cilantro flakes, onion powder, salt, and pepper.
  • You will use lime juice on the chicken skin to help make the seasonings stick to the exterior better.
  • For the cilantro rice, you will need basmati rice, freshly chopped cilantro, fresh lime zest, chicken stock, garlic, butter, onion powder, and salt.

How to make Lime Chicken with Cilantro Rice:

  1. Begin by ensuring the chicken thighs are clean and dry, then season evenly with smoked paprika, cilantro flakes, onion powder, salt, and pepper.  Pat a small amount of lime juice over the seasoned chicken to help the ingredients stick.
  2. In a large cast iron skillet (paid link) or du ch oven, sear your chicken thighs at medium-high heat for 5 to 6 minutes on each side. Set them to the side as you work on the cilantro rice. The chicken skin should be golden brown and crispy.
  3. Lower the heat to medium heat, and add butter and garlic, stirring and cooking for an additional minute.
  4. Add the basmati rice, 1/4 cup of the lime juice, lime zest, onion powder, salt, and pepper, then bring to slight broil.
  5. Return the seared chicken thighs to the pan, making room for each thigh in between the rice. Cover the skillet and continue cooking on medium-low heat for an additional 15 minutes or until the rice is tender and fluffy.
overhead shot of lime chicken and cilantro rice

What can I serve with my lime chicken and rice?

You can definitely turn this into a Tex-Mex style burrito bowl by adding a few additional toppings. Simply shred your chicken (or not) and top with a cheese of your choice, along with options like diced tomatoes, sliced avocados, pico de gallo, lettuce, salsa, and sour cream.

You can also enjoy it as is and serve it alongside a green vegetable like sauteed spinach, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, or green beans.

Can I use boneless chicken breast for this recipe?

Absolutely! If you prefer to use chicken breast for this recipe, split your chicken breast in half, and season the chicken in the same manner, but only cook the chicken breasts for 4 minutes on each side before returning them to the skillet with the cooked rice (you’ll want to add the chicken back in the skillet after the additional 15 minutes of cook time). Once combined with the rice, the dish is ready to go!

This One-Pan Lime Chicken with Cilantro Rice is a quick and easy family night dinner idea. When you want to up the ante, this recipe item will fit the bill. The fresh flavors will blow you away. Anytime you have lime and cilantro together in a dish, you can expect the freshness to shine.

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Lime Chicken with Cilantro Rice

One-Pan Lime Chicken with Cilantro Rice


  • Author: Eric Jones
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x

Description

This One-Pan Lime Chicken with Cilantro Rice pairs juicy, tangy chicken thighs with lime-infused cilantro and basmati rice. 


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 6 Chicken Thighs
  • 2 tsp Smoked Paprika
  • 2 tsp Cilantro Flakes
  • 3/4 tsp Onion Powder, divided
  • 2 tsp Salt, divided
  • 2 tsp Black Pepper, divided
  • 1/4 cup + 1 tbsp Lime Juice, divided
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 2 Tbsp Butter
  • 2 Tbsp Minced Garlic
  • 1 1/2 cups Basmati Rice
  • 2 tsp Lime Zest
  • 1/2 cup Fresh Cilantro, finely chopped
  • 3 cups Chicken Stock
  • Fresh Lime

Instructions

  1. Pat the chicken thighs dry and season evenly with smoked paprika, cilantro flakes, ¼ tsp
    onion powder, 1 tsp salt, and 1 tsp black pepper. Drizzle 1 Tbsp lime juice over the chicken.
  2. Heat oil in a large skillet at medium-high heat. Place chicken thighs skin side down and sear
    for 5 to 6 minutes on each side until golden and crispy. Remove chicken from the skillet and
    set to the side.
  3. Lower skillet heat to medium. Add butter and garlic, stirring for 1 minute until the garlic is
    fragrant.
  4. Add the basmati rice, ¼ cup lime juice, lime zest, ½ tsp onion powder, 1 tsp salt, and 1 tsp
    black pepper. Cook for 1 minute.
  5. Add fresh cilantro and chicken stock. Stir to immerse rice in stock fully. Brings ingredients to
    a slight boil, then slightly reduce the heat to medium-low.
  6. Return the chicken thighs to the skillet skin side up, cover with lid, and simmer for 15
    minutes until the rice is fully cooked and the liquid is absorbed.
  7. Remove from heat and allow the chicken and rice to rest uncovered for 10 minutes. Finish with a drizzle of fresh lime juice to serve.

Notes

After searing your chicken thighs, you may find excess liquid in the pot. You can discard or
leave a little behind for added flavor.

  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American

Nutrition

  • Calories: 513
  • Sugar: 0.6g
  • Sodium: 1314mg
  • Fat: 17.6g
  • Carbohydrates: 39.1g
  • Fiber: 1g
  • Protein: 46.3g
  • Cholesterol: 140mg

Keywords: One-Pan Lime Chicken with Cilantro Rice, Lime Chicken, Cilantro Rice

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  1. I’m planning on making this for the family this week! its a great looking recipe!