Zesty Fiesta Chicken and Rice Bake
Are you looking for a quick and easy recipe that you can make when your entire family comes over for dinner or to take for a pot luck gathering? Try my delicious fiesta chicken and rice bake. This delicious meal is the perfect entrée for a hungry family and boasts a variety of south of the border flavors. Tender chicken breasts are perfectly seasoned and served on a bed of spicy seasoned rice with healthy vegetables. This is wonderfully flavored and a sure bet to become a family favorite very quickly.
This fiesta chicken and rice is so flavorful and full of color with the fresh vegetables it is literally a fiesta to behold – one taste and your taste buds will awaken from their siesta. Your family will most certainly believe the loud brass, guitars, and violins of the Mariachi band were playing vibrant Mexican tracks in your very own dining room. If you enjoy Mexican food you are going to love this dish, so go ahead and create a fiesta in your home with this easy recipe. If you want to adapt the recipe, consider adding a can of corn to the rice mixture or even kidney beans or black beans.
This is a very easy recipe to make, as well as a colorful and appetizing one. All you need to do is combine some of the ingredients together then spoon the mixture into a dish. Add your chicken breasts on top and season them. Add some lime juice too to add that zesty touch, using fresh lime juice if you can, for a fresher and more authentic flavor. If you have a fresh lemon and no lime, simply use the juice of half the lemon and you can get the same zesty finish. Swap the black pepper for red pepper flakes instead if you want to make it spicier.
Then all that is left to do is bake it in a covered dish, adding some cheese partway through the cooking and then you can leave the lid off to give the cheese chance to melt and turn golden brown in places perhaps, if you like that. The result is something that smells amazing, looks colorful and fabulous and, as for the flavor, just wow! Spice this up with the addition of jalapeños (you can use canned ones to make short work of preparation) or even some red pepper flakes, or keep it mild if you prefer. As they say in Mexico, buen provecho!
- ¾ cup uncooked long-grain white rice
- 1 cup tomato salsa
- 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
- ½ chopped green bell pepper
- 4 sliced mushrooms
- Paprika, to taste
- Juice from ½ lime
- 10¾ oz condensed cream of chicken soup
- ½ cup water
- ½ cup shredded cheddar or Mexican-blend cheese
- Salt and black pepper, to taste
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
- Mix the water, soup, bell pepper, mushrooms, salsa and rice in shallow 2-quart baking dish.
- Top with the chicken and sprinkle with a little salt and black pepper, and add a pinch of paprika.
- Squeeze the lime juice over the chicken.
- Cover and bake for 30 minutes.
- Sprinkle with cheese and bake uncovered for a further 15 minutes or until the chicken is cooked.
- Serve piping hot from the oven.
This colorful, appealing chicken entrée is sure to make everyone’s mouth watering. The rice, salsa, vegetables and chicken are delicately flavored with lime juice and paprika, and the dish is then baked in the oven, topped with shredded cheese, and then baked a little longer until the chicken and rice are perfectly cooked. This is a great dish for a busy weeknight because it takes next to no time to prepare and it is a dish the whole family can enjoy. It is also quite an economical dish because it is based on rice and chicken breasts.
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