Piri-Piri Chicken with Tomato & Pepper Rice

If you love Nando’s, chicken and or a bit of zing and spice in your food, then this recipe is for you. I found this in an old BBC Good Food magazine (March 2013) and it is a real find.  I’ve changed the shop-bought Piri-piri in the original recipe, with a homemade one that I used from a Hairy Bikers recipe. It only requires a few ingredients and it’s really easy to make, however, if you want to save yourself a bit of time you can always use shop bought one.

Edit from November 2018: I recently made this again and made it into a one pot instead, to save a bit of time on washing up. One pot variation is at the bottom of the recipe.

Piri-Piri Chicken with Tomato & Pepper Rice

Serves 4 | Prep 15 minutes + 1hr to 24hr marinating | Cook 45 minutes
Easy | Gluten-Free | Dairy-Free

Piri-piri Chicken 4

Tip: If you have leftover cooked rice, you can use it instead of the rice in the recipe.

For the Piri-Piri marinade, you’ll need: (or you can use 6 tbsp from a bottle of mild, medium or hot Piri-Piri sauce instead)

  • 4 large red chillies, deseeded;
  • 2 red bird’s eye chillies, deseeded;
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and halved;
  • 20g bunch parsley with the stalks;
  • 2 lemons, juices (about 65 ml);
  • 2 tbsp white wine vinegar;
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika;
  • 1 tsp oregano;
  • 1 tsp caster sugar;
  • 2 tsp flaked sea salt.

For the chicken & rice:

  • 1 cup uncooked rice OR 250g cooked rice;
  • 4 chicken drumsticks & 4 chicken thighs;
  • 1 tbsp sunflower oil;
  • 2 peppers, finely diced;
  • 1 onion, finely diced;
  • 4 tbsp tomato puree;
  • 1 tbsp smoked paprika.

First, make the marinade. Put all the marinade ingredients into a blender and blitz until everything is finely chopped and mixed well together. If you don’t have a blender, chop the chillies, garlic and herbs very finely and mix well with the rest of the ingredients.

Marinade the chicken. Slash each piece of chicken 3 times to the marinade can really flavour the meat. Rub the marinade all over the chicken and leave in a fridge to marinate for at least 1 hr and up to 24 hrs. The longer the better!

When ready to cook, heat the oven to 200C/180C fan/Gas 6. Arrange the chicken skin side up in a roasting tin and spoon over the marinade on top of it. Cook for 30 minutes, then increase the heat to 220C/200C fan/Gas 7 and cook for about 15 minutes until the skin has crisped up and the chicken has cooked through.

Meanwhile, make the rice. If you are using leftover rice you can skip until the next step. Cook 1/2 cup of rice according to pack instructions while the chicken is cooking. Once cooked, keep warm until the chicken is in the final 15 minutes of cooking. When you have increased the heat of the chicken, heat up the oil in a large enough frying pan and the onion and peppers. Cook for about 5 minutes until softened. Add the tomato puree and the smoked paprika and stir well. Add the rice and break up any lumps of rice with your spoon and make sure all grains are well covered. Cook until piping hot.

Simply serve the chicken and rice together. Serve with salad, if you’d like.

Or, make it into a one-pot dish:

Marinade the chicken as per the instructions above. When ready to cook, in a large pan, add a little olive oil and brown the chicken on all sides (about 5 minutes per side) over a medium heat. In a casserole dish, cook the onions and pepper for about 5 minutes until softened. Add the rice and cook for 1 minute. Add the tomato puree and paprika, stir well and then add two cups water. Season very well and add the browned chicken. Cook for 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the rice an chicken have cooked through and almost all liquid has gone.

Original recipes: Piri-piri marinade from The Hairy Bikers and the Chicken and Rice from BBC Good Food, March 2013.


Author: Em

I am a Bulgarian girl living in Glasgow. I love travelling and exploring, and of course, cooking. I especially love experimenting in the kitchen, trying out new tastes and flavours and incorporating food from everywhere in my kitchen.

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