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Spanish Chicken over Saffron Rice Recipe

Spanish Chicken over Saffron Rice

Course lunch, Main Course
Cuisine Spanish
Keyword lunch, dinner, spanish,
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Marinate for up to 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 6
Author Sandra | Sandra's Easy Cooking


  • 6 Chicken thighs Also this depends on how many people
  • Zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt for each piece, to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon Ground Black pepper for each piece
  • 1/2 teaspoon Onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon Spanish Paprika spicy smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon Sweet Paprika
  • Pinch Crushed Chili Flakes
  • Pinch Dry Parsley
  • 1/4-1/2 Chopped Onion
  • Couple of stems Fresh Thyme *optional take the leaves off, also use it as a garnish if possible
  • 2 tbsp Olive oil


  • 1½  tablespoon Olive oil
  • ½ cup onions chopped
  • 2 cups Rice
  • 3½  cups Chicken Broth low sodium (vegetable or beef would work fine, too)
  • 1 Knorr Chicken Bouillon cube
  • 2 pinches Saffron threads soaked in 3 tablespoons of hot water for 15 minutes
  • Salt to taste only if needed


  1. Wash the chicken and place in a large mixing bowl. Add lemon juice and lemon zest and rub all over the chicken.
  2. Add/rub the rest of the ingredients on each chicken. Rub all over and under the skin if there is the skin. The skin gives you a wonderful flavor and keeps it moist rather than dry. Add fresh thyme (optional) and chopped onion, mix everything one more time.
  3. Cover the bowl with a plastic wrap/film and let it marinate for 30 minutes to up to 1 hour. Make sure it is n the fridge.

  4. Preheat the oven to 400F/200C.
  5. Arrange the chicken in the baking pan in a single layer and drizzle with olive oil, OR Drizzle the chicken with olive oil in the mixing bowl, then place on the roasting wire rack. I prefer roasting it because the hot air circulating around the chicken, however, without the rack is fine too.
  6. Bake it for about 45 minutes or until the chicken is golden and reaches the internal temperature of 165F/75C.

    Turn the chicken on the other side after 15 minutes of baking/roasting.

    If you want an extra crunchy skin, turn your broiler ON and let cook under the broiler for a couple of minutes. I do this at the very end.

  7. After the rice is done, arrange the chicken on top of the rice and garnish with fresh/or dry herbs, and roasted bell pepper if you made it with the chicken.

How to Make Yellow Rice

  1. Wash the rice a couple of times and drain it.
  2. In a pot, heat olive oil. When the oil is hot enough, add onion and stir-fry for a couple of minutes, or until softened, try not to burn. The heat should be on medium high. Stir in rice and stir-fry for 2 minutes, keep mixing.
  3. Pour in the broth, Chicken Bouillon cube, saffron with the soaking water and a pinch of salt (you can always add more later if needed). Turn your heat to high and bring to a boil.
  4. When it starts boiling, cover and turn the temperature to low heat, to simmer.
  5. Let the rice simmer on low heat for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, turn the heat off completely. DO NOT take off the lid. Let the rice steam for 5 minutes covered. Use a fork to fluff up the rice.

Recipe Notes

If you do not wish to make it from scratch, you can always get bagged yellow rice. It is called Arroz Amarillo

Add a pinch of turmeric for extra yellow color. Get a good quality of Saffron threads, it is so worth it and a little goes a long way.

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