Arroz con pollo is one of my favorite dishes to order at our local Mexican restaurant, so when I had a craving for a little Mexican chicken and rice, I decided to fire up the Blackstone griddle and make my own!
If you caught the YouTube video for this easy Mexican Blackstone recipe, then you know that I can’t really pronounce the name “arroz con pollo”, so let’s just call it “ACP” or “Mexican chicken with rice”.
And let me also preface this post by saying that I’m sure this arroz con pollo recipe is not authentic… The rice has salsa mixed in instead of tomatoes, and I didn’t use any special spices… two of the most common ingredients in traditional arroz con pollo. Not to mention the white cheese dip that I poured on top, which I’m pretty sure is just a staple in Mexican restaurants here in the South.
But this restaurant version of Mexican chicken and rice is dang delicious! Here’s how to make it:
What do I need to make Mexican Chicken and Rice?
- boneless skinless chicken breasts – I used the stir fry chicken that you can find in the meat department, because it saved me from cutting the chicken breasts myself and it was actually on sale for cheaper than regular chicken breasts.
- sliced onion
- sliced bell pepper – I actually used the mini sweet bell peppers because that’s what I already had on hand in the fridge.
- tomato – Cut into wedges
- Mexican rice – You can see how I make my Mexican rice in this post for grilled stuffed steak burritos… I highly recommend that you cook the rice the day before for best results.
- lemon juice – The little bit of acid finishes this dish nicely, but it’s not required.
- white Mexican cheese dip – A Mexican restaurant staple here in the South!
- your favorite Mexican toppings – Like guacamole, sour cream, and hot sauce
Ingredients for the Quick Mexican Chicken Marinade
For my version of “ACP”, I made a quick 10 minute marinade with the following ingredients:
- garlic powder
- Adobo seasoning
- Sazon seasoning – I had it leftover from making my Chicken Chopped Cheese sandwiches.
- taco seasoning – I prefer the Old El Paso brand.
- lemon juice
- avocado oil – Or your cooking oil of choice.
How to Make Mexican Chicken and Rice on the Blackstone Griddle
This Mexican Chicken and Rice is super easy to make on the griddle… In fact, it was probably quicker to make it at home than it would have been for us to pile in the car and drive to our favorite Mexican restaurant. Here’s how to do it:
Step 1: Make the Mexican rice.
The first step to making the perfect Mexican chicken and rice is to make the actual rice, which really needs to be done a day early.
Whenever I make a fried rice dish on the griddle, I prepare the rice the day before so that it can refrigerate overnight. In my experience, this helps the rice to not get too sticky on the griddle, probably because it dries out a bit in the refrigerator and cools the starches down, so when you put it on the griddle, the rice doesn’t overcook.
This rice is the exact same Mexican rice that I made for these Grilled Stuffed Steak Burritos – so be sure to check out that post for the full rice recipe… And if you have any leftovers after making this dish, then you can go ahead and whip up some griddle burritos, too!
Step 2: Marinate the chicken strips.
If you’re using chicken breasts, go ahead and cut them into strips similar to what you would get in a stir fry mix. The chicken strips should be cut about 3/4″ wide.
Then, add the cut chicken to a large bowl with the spices, seasonings, and oil of your choice. Mix everything together and let it marinate for about 10-15 minutes. It should look something like this:
While your chicken is marinating, you can move on to the next step…
Step 3: Slice the vegetables for your Mexican chicken and rice.
Next, it’s time to prep your vegetables. Our local Mexican restaurants typically use onions, bell peppers, and tomatoes in their arroz con pollo, so that’s what I used as well.
Just slice the peppers and onions, and cut the tomato into wedges. If you cut the tomato too small, then it will just disintegrate and turn to a chunky tomato sauce on the griddle, so it should look something like this:
I also snuck in a smoked jalapeno that I had leftover from this Jalapeno Popper Grilled Cheese Sandwich… *Pro Tip – The next time that you’re smoking something on your grill or smoker, add a few whole fresh jalapeños and smoke them for about an hour. Then stick them in the fridge to add a little extra punch of flavor to other dishes throughout the week!
Step 4: Start cooking the Mexican rice and vegetables on the griddle.
I like to start cooking the rice first because, even though it’s already been cooked through, my family really likes the rice to have more of a crispy fried texture. Just add the cooked rice to the griddle, and start heating it through. Then, after a few minutes you can move it to the side of your griddle to make room for the other ingredients.
Then, add a bit of your favorite cooking oil to the heated griddle surface and start cooking the peppers and onions. When you first place the peppers and onions on the griddle, don’t move them around until at least 3-4 minutes pass. This allows the vegetables to develop a nice char before you start sautéing them together.
After the peppers and onions have cooked for about 5 minutes, you can add the tomato wedges. You don’t want to add the tomatoes too early because they’ll overcook and get too mushy on the griddle.
Here’s what my Blackstone griddle looked like at this stage:
Step 5: Heat the Mexican white cheese dip in a saucepan.
Just add your white cheese dip to a small saucepan and set it on the griddle to begin heating. Stir the cheese dip occasionally so it doesn’t burn, and once it’s reached your desired consistency, you can go ahead and remove it from the griddle.
If the cheese starts to harden back up again, you can just place the saucepan back on the griddle surface to warm it up again. As the cheese dip gets warmer, it will get thinner… perfect for pouring over your Mexican chicken and rice.
Step 6: Cook the Mexican chicken strips on the Blackstone griddle.
When your rice is done to your liking and the vegetables are cooked through, you can move those to the sides of your griddle to make room for the chicken. If you’re cooking this Mexican recipe on the Blackstone griddle, then you probably already know that the Blackstone tends to have cooler zones on both sides… Use that to your advantage as a “warming zone” to keep your other dish components warm while the chicken cooks.
When you first add the chicken to the Blackstone, make sure that each piece has its own little “landing pad” and that it’s not just piled up together. Then, DON’T TOUCH IT for about 4 or 5 minutes… This allows each piece to get a nice char, which is just another easy way to add extra flavor to your finished dish.
After a few minutes, you can flip each individual chicken piece to the second side like this:
Allow the chicken to cook for a couple more minutes, and then you can start tossing it together. I also added some fresh chopped cilantro and some lemon juice at this time. Those few simple ingredients really brighten up the dish!
Cook the chicken until it’s done, and then you’re ready to plate!
Step 7: Plate the Mexican chicken and rice and enjoy!
When all of the individual components are cooked through, it’s time to plate your Mexican dish! For this restaurant-style arroz con pollo, start by adding rice to the bottom of the plate. Top with the vegetables and chicken, and pour the warm cheese dip on top.
Then, you can add your favorite Mexican toppings like sour cream, hot sauce, salsa, or the quick avocado mash that I made in the YouTube video for this Mexican chicken and rice! Enjoy!
Have Leftover Mexican Rice?
Why not make some griddle burritos?! If you know me, then you know that I despise leftovers… so I’m always trying to come up with creative ways to use leftovers in completely new dishes. These grilled stuffed steak burritos can help you use up your Mexican ingredients!