Arroz con pollo, kabsa, chicken biryani… the list goes on and on, but one thing is glaringly clear: Chicken and rice is a celebrated combination around the world. This comfort food comes baked, steamed, and fried. It’s sometimes even spiced with saffron or chile, but no matter the dish’s form, chicken and rice is always comforting.When the Oxford English Dictionary added the term comfort food in 1997, it, surprisingly, traced its origin back to just 1977, when it was printed in a Washington Post Magazine article about Southern grits. But the idea that a food can provide warmth and solace is much older in practice, as exemplified with these familiar classics from around the world.
Even beyond chicken and rice’s ability to soothe the soul, this easy-to-prepare dish is packed with protein, complex grains, and flavor to keep your taste buds satisfied and your hunger at bay. Try out these easy chicken and rice recipes inspired by comfort food classics celebrated around the world, and experience why this is such a beloved food pairing.
Kabsa (Spiced Chicken and Rice with Almonds and Raisins)
Sawsan Abu Farha
Kabsa gets its unique flavor from the blend of spices, which includes allspice, black pepper, cardamom, and cinnamon. This dish, indigenous to the Arabian Peninsula, uses long-grain or basmati rice that is studded with almonds and raisins.
Halal Cart-Style Chicken and Rice with White Sauce
This dish is probably more at home in midtown Manhattan than the Middle East. The smell alone of the spices will get those taste buds going, but just one bite and you’ll be hooked.
Quicker Barbecued Chicken and Rice
Taste of Home
Just add barbecue sauce for an even-more-delicious take on the classic chicken and rice. This quick dish is the perfect comfort food after a long day.
Ranchero Chicken and Rice
Del Monte Foods Corporate
This quick Tex-Mex take on chicken and rice requires the addition of just a few ingredients, like chopped tomatoes, chipotle chiles, corn, and cumin.
Easy Cheesy Chicken and Rice Casserole
How do you make chicken and rice more comforting? Just add cheese. Make this casserole ahead of time and heat up for dinner for a quick and easy dinner solution.
Easy Chicken Biryani
Chicken biryani is a beloved dish in Indian culture. This dish derives its flavor from yogurt, ginger paste, onion, and spices that give biryani that distinctly warm and comforting flavor.
Easy Arroz con Pollo
The Cuban classic has rich flavors of garlic, green pepper, tomatoes, and onions, which make this classic a quick, flavorful option for a quick weeknight dinner.
Angela Carlos is the Cook Editor at The Daily Meal. Find her on Twitter and tweet @angelaccarlos.