Friday, November 7, 2014

Chicken Thighs and Brown Rice

Here's a very easy crock-pot recipe that makes the most delicious chicken and rice. I'm not usually a fan of dark meat, but these chicken thighs are really good and even this die-hard chicken-breast-only girl will eat them readily. My little ones love this meal too. With the whole grain brown rice, it's a fairly healthy choice for supper. It's also a pretty inexpensive meal, so it's win-win for everyone.

4-6 chicken thighs (with skin on)
2 cups brown rice
4-1/2 cups water
3 tablespoons butter, divided
Lemon pepper
Black pepper

Pour the water into the crockpot and add the rice and about a tablespoon of butter. Add rosemary, thyme, sage, and salt. I use about 3/4 teaspoon rosemary, 1/8 teaspoon each of thyme and sage, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. I never measure it, but that's approximately how much to use. Stir the water and rice well to make sure each rice grain gets wet on all sides. If you have a lump of dry rice at the bottom, it makes it stick together in a big lump as it cooks.

Melt the remaining butter. Add lemon pepper, sage, thyme, salt, and pepper. Again, I never measure, but it's approximately 1-1/2 tablespoons lemon pepper, 1/4 teaspoon each of thyme, sage and pepper, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Mix the seasonings with the melted butter.

Tip: I use the same seasoning blend for several of my chicken recipes, so I usually just mix up a big bunch of it and keep it in an empty seasoning bottle. It makes it so much easier to season up chicken in a hurry, whether that's this recipe or my butter baked chicken, roast chicken, or even lemon pepper chicken strips.

Now it's time to get out the chicken.

Tip: I buy chicken thighs in the big packages when they go on sale and freeze them in freezer bags with 4-6 thighs per bag. Then, when I want to make this recipe for dinner, I just pull out one bag from the freezer and thaw it in warm water in the sink for an hour or two. If you've ever tried thawing chicken that was frozen in the original packaging, it's a pain! This is so much easier.

Loosen the skin from the chicken thighs, but don't remove it. Coat the surface of the meat with the butter and spices.

I usually put a little bit of the butter and spices on the underside of the thighs too. Put the skin back over the top of the thighs and try to cover as much of the meat as you can. There's usually a long flap of skin that I wrap under the thigh also. Place the thighs on top of the rice in the crockpot.

Put the lid on the crockpot and turn it on high for 5 hours or until the chicken is tender and the water is absorbed by the rice. That's it! You don't even have to stir it during cooking.

To serve, take the chicken thighs out and place them on a warmed plate or platter. Then stir the rice in the crockpot to mix in all the seasonings and juices.

You can serve the chicken and rice as separate items or de-bone the chicken, cut it up, and stir it into the rice for a dish that's more like a casserole.

Serve with a vegetable dish of your choice. I recommend green peas. Other good choices are squash, carrots, green beans, or a green bean casserole. Enjoy!


  1. Trying this soon! Maybe some mushrooms into the rice while cooking?