Cuban chicken and rice with mojo sauce, Arroz con pollo

May and Maha love experimenting with trendy international cuisines, and Cuban food is definitely on the hot trend radar.

This dish was adapted by the Cubans from the Spanish paella, it shares many similar flavours like saffron and smoked paprika, and it uses the same kind of rice – a medium grain white rice (we used Sunrice). But the dish is firmly planted in Central American cooking, and their hearts, with plenty of cumin and dry oregano added to give it a distinct flavour.

The best thing about this dish is that it’s all cooked on one pot – so it’s perfect for May and Maha, who hate washing up. It’s a great family meal, and perfect for the girls to make for a big group of their flatmates too. There’s rarely any left as it’s sooooo tasty, but if you do have leftovers – some say it tastes even better the next day.

The mojo sauce is a Cuban favourite, and goes perfectly with any roast or bbq meats, as well as this rice dish. It’s essentially a garlic-citrus sauce and is made with a special kind of bitter orange juice. Here in Australia we use a combination of orange and lime juice to replicate the authentic flavour.

Watch us teach May and Maha this recipe on Episode 6 of Kitchen Rescue on TenPlay

Cuban chicken and rice with mojo sauce, Arroz con pollo


Cooked in35 minutes



• ¼ cup olive oil
• 8 free range chicken thighs, bone in, skin on

• 1 large onion, diced finely
• 1 large red capsicum, diced finely
• 3 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
• 2 cups Sunrice Medium Grain White Rice

• 1 tsp Hoyts smoked paprika
• ½ tsp Hoyts ground cumin
• 1 tsp Hoyts dried oregano
• 3 Hoyts bay leaves
• Pinch of Hoyts saffron
• 1 cup beer
• 2.5 cups chicken stock
• 200g tinned chopped tomatoes
• Maldon Salt, to taste

• 1 cup frozen peas

For the cuban mojo sauce:
• 4 cloves garlic
• 60ml orange juice
• 40ml lime juice
• 40ml olive oil
• ¼ tsp dry oregano
• ¼ tsp ground cumin
• A few sprigs of fresh coriander
• Maldon Salt and pepper


1. Take a large casserole pan and place on medium heat. Season chicken. Add oil and fry chicken thighs skin side down for 6 minutes, or until golden. Turn over and cook for 4 minutes. Remove and set aside.
2. Into the same pot, place the chopped onion, red capsicum and garlic and cook for 5 to 10 minutes, or until golden and translucent. Add the rice and cook for a further 2 minutes, until well coated in oil.
3. Next, add all the spices, chicken stock, beer, diced tomatoes and Maldon salt. Stir, increase heat to high, and place chicken back into pot neatly, skin side up.
4. Bring to the boil, then turn heat down to low and place lid on top, simmer for 15 minutes. Remove lid, add peas to the top, place lid back on and turn off the heat, allowing the residual steam to finish cooking the rice and peas.
5. For the mojo sauce, simply blend all ingredients together in the Philips Pro Mix hand blender
6. Serve rice in the cooking dish, with sauce on the side

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