Teaching myself to cook, one recipe at a time.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Salsa Chicken and Spanish Rice

Dinner earlier this week was an example of getting creative based on what I had in my kitchen, not wanting to try out a new recipe. Let’s see… Cilantro, onion, a few cans of diced tomatoes, some chicken breasts in the freezer. The answer came to me while I was driving. I can actually tell you what intersection I was at and what lane I was in, but I suppose you don’t really care about that.


I swear I’ve made this before, though it had been a long time, but I couldn’t find the exact recipe in my collection, just a similar one. I know the psychiatrist that I work with once told me about essentially the same recipe, and I’m not sure if my mind has combined my own recipe with hers or if I really did have a different recipe at one point, but either way, what I made was a combination of the recipe that I had and what she told me about.

First of all, you need salsa. I didn’t have any in my cupboard, but I had all the fixins so I made my own in my blender. I’ve blogged about this before.


Next, get out that homemade taco seasoning. I’ve also blogged about this, but for some reason Windows Live refuses to let me link to the post. You’ll have to look in my archives (April 2011).


Put your chicken breasts in a dish and sprinkle liberally with the taco seasoning.


Then put it seasonings-side-down in a greased dish and sprinkle the other side with more seasoning.


Top with that salsa that you just whipped up (store-bought salsa would be fine, too!).


And then top with a Mexican blend of cheese.


If you’re sad that you’re out of cheese and you wish you had more, be like me and chop up a stick of Monterey-colby blend, too.


And that’s it! Just needs to be baked.


There’s so much water in my salsa that the chicken was practically sitting in flavorful water while it baked. That does wonderful things for the chicken! It was so juicy. So delicious.

Now for the Spanish rice. Heat some oil and sauté chopped onion.


Add a cup of uncooked rice and stir it around until it starts looking browned. I’m pretty sure this is to make the final product less sticky and Asian-like, but don’t ask me to swear to that.


The recipe says to add chicken broth, a can of diced tomatoes, some seasonings and spice, and salt/ pepper. I substituted my own salsa for a lot of that, since it’s pretty much what it is, anyway.


Then reduce the heat, cover, and leave it alone for about 20 minutes. No peeking. Gah, that’s hard.


But worth it!


Delicious. I was very pleased with both of these, though the rice was spicy from the salsa. Chicken was juicy, the rice was soft the fluffy, and they were both full of flavor and spice.




  1. mmmmmmmm that looks yummy! Too bad I made chicken fajitas today; Josh won't want that tomorrow. Maybe Sunday =)

    1. You can pan-fry the chicken to brown the chicken on each side before putting it in the baking dish, if you want (just reduce the cooking time in the oven). Personally, I prefer the softer texture of just baking it, but it could also be nice to have it browned and started before you pop it in the oven.