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Rice Pilaf with Blackened Chicken

Tender juicy Blackened Chicken over Rice Pilaf made in the rice cooker makes this a very easy recipe. The rice pilaf is made with veggies and fragrant seasonings. This easy, tasty recipe serves 8-12 people and is great for a large dinner party.

blackened chicken over rice pilaf

This recipe was created in sponsorship by Carolina Rice and I am so excited to share it with you!

I am excited to share this Rice Pilaf with Blackened Chicken recipe with you. I made this when we were visiting Aldo's sister who just had a baby.

This dish was perfect to make because it feeds 8-12 people and is so easy to make. It is delicious, festive, and the new parents still had lots of rice and chicken leftover after we left. I hear new parents like it when people come over with food!

The rice pilaf took less than an hour to make from start to finish, and required minimal fuss because the rice pilaf was cooked in a rice cooker.

rice pilaf with blackened chicken in a bowl

Related recipe: Blackened Salmon Rice Bowls

Here's what readers are saying about this recipe:

"Chicken turned out great. I served it in a salad."

"#BlackenedChicken perfection 💯"

"It came out delicious."

The blackened chicken cooks very quickly on the stove top while the rice is cooking. The hot heat of the skillet sears the chicken and cooks it fast, leaving it tender and juicy on the inside. And the flavor from all the spices on the chicken is just so delicious. The blackened seasoning spice mixture almost forms a crust on the chicken to seal in the juices. SO GOOD.

blackened chicken rice pilaf in a bowl

This is definitely a recipe I will keep in mind when cooking for large crowds or if we have family over for the holidays. It's just so easy, delicious, and is a great comfort food meal. Let me walk you through how to make this blackened chicken with rice recipe.

Related recipe: Chicken and Rice Casserole

How to cook the most flavorful rice pilaf:

We used Basmati rice for this rice pilaf, which was perfect because it is very fragrant and adds its own delicious flavor, and it cooks up into perfect fluffy rice.

rice pilaf with blackened chicken in a rice cooker

I cooked the rice in chicken broth instead of just water to give it even more flavor, and added some oregano to it because Aldo's grandma traditionally adds oregano to her rice dishes. I also added a dash of cinnamon to the cooking liquid, just to give some more depth to the flavor. Don't worry, the cinnamon doesn't make it taste like a cinnamon bun.

blackened chicken - tender and juicy - on a plate

How to make blackened chicken:

Blackened seasoning is super easy to make, and it's very customizable. It can be made spicy by adding a little (or a lot!) of cayenne pepper. Since I was cooking for our family that does not like spicy food, I skipped it this time. Here are the spices that I use in my blackened seasoning mix:

To make blackened chicken, I mix all the spices together in a small bowl, and then generously coat the chicken breast with the seasoning on all sides, using my fingers to press the seasoning onto chicken. 

Then put the chicken on a searing hot skillet (use your cast iron skillet if you have one!) and cook until the chicken is blackened on each side and fully cooked inside. I used butter for this recipe to give the chicken a richer flavor, but you can certainly use a healthier oil, such as canola oil or coconut oil. I wouldn't recommend olive oil because the skillet needs to be searing hot, and olive oil smokes at high temperature.

You can use this blackened seasoning on other proteins, such as salmon (check out my recipe for Blackened Salmon with Black Bean Mango Relish), shrimp, or chicken thighs.

The blackened chicken turned out amazing... mmm mm mmm. That was good enough to eat on its own, but I resisted, and roughly chopped/shredded it into bite sized pieces and mixed it in with the rice. Not to toot my own horn, but this whole recipe came out DELICIOUS.

Oh, and if you have leftover blackened chicken, you can use it for this healthy black-eyed peas recipe!

What to serve with blackened chicken and rice

Since blackened chicken is a little spicy, it pairs perfectly with rice and a bright, fruity salsa on top, such as pineapple pico de gallo. It would also be great topped with this pineapple black bean salsa, or simply served with a side salad.

If you enjoyed this, you will LOVE these recipes:

Did you enjoy this recipe? Let me know with a comment and a star rating below! And don't forget to save it for later on Pinterest:

pinterest image of blackened chicken over rice pilaf

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4.72 from 14 votes

Rice Pilaf with Blackened Chicken

Tender juicy Blackened Chicken over Rice Pilaf made in the rice cooker makes this a very easy recipe. The rice pilaf is made with veggies and fragrant seasonings. This easy, tasty recipe serves 8-12 people and is great for a large dinner party.
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time35 minutes
Total Time45 minutes
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Servings: 8 servings
Author: Kate


Rice Pilaf:
  • 1 large yellow onion - , diced
  • 1 garlic clove - , minced
  • 2 cups diced carrots - (about 4 medium carrots)
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil - , divided
  • 2 cups fresh or frozen peas
  • 4 cups white rice - uncooked
  • 1 quart chicken broth
  • 1 cup water - (or more, depending on your rice cooker instructions)
  • Salt - , to taste (1 teaspoon is a good start)
  • teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
Blackened Chicken:


Rice Pilaf
  • In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil, and saute the diced onion, garlic, and carrots for about 5 minutes, or until the onion and carrots soften.
  • In a 10-cup or larger rice cooker, combine the rice, chicken broth, salt, olive oil, cinnamon, and oregano. Add the sauteed carrot/onion/garlic mixture and the fresh or frozen peas (no need to thaw). 
    Follow your rice cooker's directions for the amount of liquid needed to cook 4 cups of rice. Our requires 1 extra cup of liquid (so 5 cups of liquid for 4 cups of rice), which is why I used 1 quart chicken broth + 1 cup water. 
    Cook the rice in the rice cooker until it is soft and fluffy. Fluff the rice with a fork and keep warm.
    Cook the chicken while the rice is cooking.
Blackened Chicken
  • Combine all the spices and herbs for the blackened chicken in a small bowl (from paprika through cayenne). Mix well. Place the spice mixture in a plate and press the chicken breasts into the spice mixture on both sides to coat the chicken. 
  • In the same large skillet you used for the onions and carrots, heat 4 tablespoons of butter. Carefully place the spice-coated chicken breasts into the butter, and cook over high heat for about 5 minutes on each side, or until the chicken is fully cooked. If the chicken is blackened but not fully cooked, just lower the heat and cover with a lid, cooking until the internal temperature reaches 165F.
    Serve the blackened chicken over the rice pilaf, or chop the cooked blackened chicken and mix with the rice.



Calories: 583kcal (29%) | Carbohydrates: 2g (1%) | Protein: 13g (26%) | Fat: 16g (25%) | Saturated Fat: 5g (25%) | Cholesterol: 51mg (17%) | Sodium: 1133mg (47%) | Potassium: 351mg (10%) | Vitamin A: 1055IU (21%) | Vitamin C: 9.1mg (11%) | Calcium: 19mg (2%) | Iron: 1mg (6%)

The nutritional information displayed is an estimate and not to be used as dietary or nutritional advice. Consult a nutritionist or dietician for nutritional info based on the exact ingredients you use.



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Mona Brenneman

Wednesday 7th of October 2020

I don’t have a rice cooker. Ideas on how to make the rice?


Wednesday 7th of October 2020

Hi Mona! Do you have an Instant Pot? If yes, saute the onions, garlic, and carrot in the Instant Pot, then add 1:1 rice:water ratio (no need to rinse rice), stir, and cook on high pressure manual setting for 5 minutes. Allow pressure to release naturally for ~10 minutes, then release manually and stir to fluff the rice.

No Instant Pot? Saute the onions, garlic, carrots in a skillet, then transfer to a pot with water and rice and cook according to the rice packaging directions (add water per rice packaging directions).

Good luck! Let me know how it turns out!!

Little Cooking Tips

Sunday 8th of November 2015

Deeee-licious recipe Kate! We loved the cajun style blackened chicken and indeed this must be soooo good with the pilaf! We loved the family table photo as well!:) And yes, we agree, this period every autumn makes you wanna crawl to the couch and spend the time as laziest as you can:) Have a wonderful Sunday! Panos and Mirella xoxoxo

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