Arroz Con Pollo Recipe – Indian Spices Inspired

27 May

Arroz which means rice in portuguese is a staple in Goa but the confusing fact is that when a Goan says they made arroz it means they made pulao. I had arroz con pollo only a couple of times but each one had a variation and as a home cook I wanted to make a recipe based on my taste. I do know that the Peruvian version uses cilantro and not all south american countries have the same recipe. Though the argument is that it first originated in Spain. To an Indian it’s more like a biryani pulao recipe. I have found that my kids enjoy my food experiment. Every time I come with something new they get excited and willing be my taste testers, while my husband on the other hand is more cautious and has a refined tongue not everything is a hit 😉


Goan’s make arroz de camarao (shrimp/prawns),  arroz de verdura(vegetables) or Clam Pulao (arroz de mexilhão). The basic ingredients for making Pulao/Arroz is turmeric, cloves, cinnamon, onions, tomatoes, chicken or vegetable bouillon, bay leaf is optional. My recipe of arroz con pollo had a strong flavor of ginger, garlic, mint and cilantro. You can also use the same spice recipe to make a very aromatic curry for chicken, fish or meats.


Serving Size: 8-10


2-3 lbs of chicken thighs/ drumsticks

3 cups basmati rice

4 cups water or stock

2-3 chicken bouillon (according to preference)

4 tbsp of lemon or lime juice

salt to taste

Grind into paste

1 medium onion

1 medium tomato

5-7 cloves of garlic

1″ ginger

1 bunch of cilantro

8-12 leaves of mint

Dry Whole Spices

3″ cinnamon stick

8 whole cardamom

8 whole cloves

2 bay leaves

2  whole star anise


Wash the chicken, apply salt and lemon juice and keep aside. Grind the wet ingredients and apply to the chicken. Let marinate for at least 30 minutes.

Next heat oil add whole spices and till the oil is aromatic about 2-3 minutes while watching carefully on medium heat. Next add the marinated meat and saute for a couple of minutes. Check for seasoning. Cover and cook on medium heat for 25 minutes. Check occasionally.

In most cases there should be a gravy about 1.5 to 2 cups approx. Now add the washed rice, water or stock and season the liquid with bouillon. Bring it to a boil, cover and cook on medium low heat for 15 minutes. Turn of heat and let stand for another 20 minutes.

Open the cover and fluff the rice with a fork.



You can use any meat of choice, shrimps or if you want to make a vegetarian version use soya nuggets

Check my website for all your Indian spices, dals and preserves needs in the US. FREE Shipping on $100.


62 Responses to “Arroz Con Pollo Recipe – Indian Spices Inspired”

  1. Smiling Notes May 27, 2016 at 5:40 pm #

    Awesome!! You made me really hungry 😊

    • Nandini June 1, 2016 at 12:27 pm #

      That is very kind of you to say 🙂

  2. mihrank May 27, 2016 at 5:58 pm #

    always delicious!

    • Nandini June 1, 2016 at 12:28 pm #

      Thank You Mihrank 🙂

  3. Plectrumm May 27, 2016 at 6:04 pm #

    You can call that whatever you feel is right…it looks like something I would love to eat😍

    • Nandini June 1, 2016 at 12:37 pm #

      Thank you for allowing me to do that and I am happy to know you like it 🙂

  4. Cheryl "Cheffie Cooks" Wiser May 27, 2016 at 7:05 pm #

    Hello Nandini-lovely dish!! Wishing you a Happy Memorial Day weekend. Cheryl x

    • Nandini June 1, 2016 at 12:39 pm #

      Thank You Cheryl so much we had a lovely day at the beach. Hope your’s too was awesome. Tc my dear friend 🙂

  5. atkokosplace May 27, 2016 at 8:32 pm #

    I can smell it from here! Yum! I can totally see this with shrimp too! Awesome. Thanks for inspiring! 🙂

    • Nandini June 1, 2016 at 12:40 pm #

      You are so welcome and thank you so much for your kind words 🙂

  6. Mr. Militant Negro May 28, 2016 at 12:52 am #

    Reblogged this on The Militant Negro™.

    • Nandini June 1, 2016 at 12:54 pm #

      Thank You so much for the re-blog 🙂

  7. fromthefamilytable May 28, 2016 at 7:48 am #

    The local version of arroz con pollo – with different spices than yours – is very popular. Thanks for suggesting another way.

    • Nandini June 1, 2016 at 12:55 pm #

      Thank You Darryl so much. It is quite different from the original version.

  8. Daring to Dream it May 28, 2016 at 8:11 am #

    This sounds delicious!

  9. Loretta May 28, 2016 at 11:00 am #

    This looks excellent Nandini, love the chicken flavors with the rice, I could do with a bowl of it right about now. I hope you’re enjoying your long Memorial Day weekend and hoping all is well with you and your family. xo

    • Nandini June 1, 2016 at 12:57 pm #

      Thank You Loretta so much. I did take a nice break. Sorry in the delay in getting back. I hope you too had a wonderful weekend 🙂

  10. youthfoodblog May 28, 2016 at 11:25 am #

    A great way to make a wonderful chicken dish!

    • Nandini June 1, 2016 at 12:58 pm #

      Thank You Chris, it sure is 🙂

  11. Laura @ Feast Wisely May 28, 2016 at 8:05 pm #

    Lovely Nandini – I just imagining how good this tastes with all of those spices – no wonder your kids enjoy mum’s experimentation in the kitchen!

    • Nandini June 1, 2016 at 1:15 pm #

      Thank You Laura so much. It was very aromatic and my home too 🙂

  12. laflor5233 May 28, 2016 at 9:03 pm #

    We (Mexicans) also have Arroz con Pollo, which we make with Spanish rice.

    • Nandini June 1, 2016 at 1:17 pm #

      And the recipe is very different from mine with saffron and tomatoes I think 🙂

  13. Divya Deepak Rao May 29, 2016 at 5:22 am #

    I love rice & will soon try a vegetarian version of this😊

    • Nandini June 1, 2016 at 1:18 pm #

      Thank is awesome Divya. Will look forward to hearing from you 🙂

  14. Archana May 29, 2016 at 7:18 pm #

    Looks amazing!!

    • Nandini June 1, 2016 at 1:21 pm #

      Thank You so much Archana

  15. lynne hoareau May 30, 2016 at 7:00 am #

    Oh my word, this sounds delightful. I feel I can literally smell all those aromas 🙂

    • Nandini June 1, 2016 at 1:21 pm #

      Awww….thank you Lynne. You are very kind 🙂

  16. Turquoise Compass May 30, 2016 at 10:02 am #

    I am back in action again (I bet you know how that is). Stay tuned for more regular postings! I’d love it if you could tell me what you’d like to see more of: travel, bucket list, pilot-wife-life, lifestyle, yoga, or turquoise inspiration (or all of the above, lol)!
    Jessica, Turquoise Compass

    • Nandini June 1, 2016 at 1:22 pm #

      Good to see you back Jessica. I would say all of the above. Hope you have a lovely day 🙂

  17. Stan de Man May 30, 2016 at 1:59 pm #

    Heya Nandini!

    I must confess that ‘ARROZ’ is the ‘THE PIECE DE RESISTANCE’ of any Goan meal.And yes,to that end no feast or party would be complete without ARROZ. You are SPOT ON, when You say that when a Goan mentions that He or She made ARROZ it actually means PULAO,A bit confusing for the rest of the world, Your version looks great,Pulao in Goa comes in a number of variations, To an Indian it may look like BIRIYANI, You make ARROZ CON POLLO look very PALATABLE.We will have to give Your recipe a go soon. Rest assured I will give You a feedback, in due course of time.

    Have a brilliant weekend,

    With Our kindest best wishes

    Stan n Linda

    • Nandini June 1, 2016 at 1:24 pm #

      Thank You Mr Stan so much. You are so right for a Goan “‘ARROZ’ is the ‘THE PIECE DE RESISTANCE’ of any Goan meal.” Hope Mrs Stan and you have a lovely week 🙂

  18. Freda @ Aromatic essence May 30, 2016 at 3:19 pm #

    Looks so yum! Lovely flavors!

    • Nandini June 1, 2016 at 1:25 pm #

      Freda, Thank you so much 🙂

  19. stateeats May 30, 2016 at 7:26 pm #

    Hi Nandini – I really like the spices of your version, very different from the usual way I make this dish. Can’t wait to try it. -Kat

    • Nandini June 1, 2016 at 1:26 pm #

      Thank You so much Kat and I am so excited to hear that 🙂

  20. skd May 31, 2016 at 11:49 am #

    Looks and sounds delicious Nandini. I am sure my kids will love it too if I try this recipe for them. Thank you for sharing ☺

    • Nandini June 1, 2016 at 1:26 pm #

      I am so happy to know that and Thank You so much 🙂

  21. Pinnatifid June 1, 2016 at 10:11 am #

    Looks delicious! Love your photography, too!

  22. Rhonda Sittig June 1, 2016 at 6:22 pm #

    This looks savory delicious — I make a Spanish version of Arroz con Pollo from the years we lived in Spain– but your’s looks a lot more interesting. thanks!

    • Nandini June 10, 2016 at 1:29 pm #

      Thank You Rhonda so much it sure is a lot different than the spanish version I guess but I should say it’s a lot more aromatic 🙂

      • Rhonda Sittig June 11, 2016 at 8:44 pm #

        I think that’s exactly it Nandini– more savory and spicy– sounds delicious!! Hope all is well with you… xo

        • Nandini June 14, 2016 at 4:00 pm #

          Thank You Rhonda so much. Hope the same with you as well. Take care 🙂

  23. sabitha June 2, 2016 at 6:15 pm #

    Looks so tempting 🙂 🙂

    • Nandini June 10, 2016 at 4:13 pm #

      Thank You Sabitha so much

  24. Sandhya June 4, 2016 at 4:27 am #

    Nandini, I love pullavs and arroz of all kinds:) The clam one you mentioned sounds very yummy too. I have not had that before. I may have a chance to go to Goa in October. I will have to get names of places to eat from you.

    • Nandini June 10, 2016 at 4:17 pm #

      How exciting Sandhya :-)… Mum’s Kitchen in Panjim is quite authentic Goan.

      • Sandhya June 11, 2016 at 8:43 am #

        Thanks so much. I will definitely look it up when we go. As a child I have been to Goa every couple of years mainly to visit the Shantadurga temple in Ponda. But after moving to the us, it has been ages since i have gone to Goa. So I am really looking forward to it.

  25. Sheryl June 5, 2016 at 7:35 pm #

    Your version of this classic dish looks awesome.

    • Nandini June 10, 2016 at 4:19 pm #

      Thank You so much Sheryl 🙂

  26. taraisarockstar June 15, 2016 at 8:07 pm #

    Great photos! I’m definitely inspired to try this!

    • Nandini June 23, 2016 at 12:53 pm #

      That is so awesome to know. Thank You!

  27. hervintagetableblog August 14, 2016 at 12:51 pm #

    Oh boy, can’t wait to make this. I love cooking with spices. I buy majority of mine online from a site called almost all of my recipes are filled with those spice, very good quality and sooooo affordable. Thank you for this post yum-yum

    • Nandini August 15, 2016 at 4:47 pm #

      That is so awesome. I am happy to hear that 🙂

  28. blogturtle January 14, 2017 at 5:17 am #

    Oh my god. I love arroz con pollo. And with basmati ?! You make the best dishes.
    Sincerely, Al

    • Nandini January 25, 2017 at 1:34 pm #

      Thank You Al, just imagine the aroma 🙂


  1. Arroz Con Pollo Recipe – Indian Spices Inspired – How To With Jaya - June 13, 2016

    […] Source: Arroz Con Pollo Recipe – Indian Spices Inspired […]

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