Rice Stuffed Chicken Thighs is a simple recipe that satisfies a crowd while being packed full of flavor! Follow my recipe for an easy weeknight meal!
Table Of Contents
Serving up a delicious but easy meal is always a focus in my menu plan. This simple Rice Stuffed Chicken Thighs recipe has become a favorite. Not only is it fairly simple to prepare, but it also has a delicious flavor and looks beautiful once cooked. I’m sure you will enjoy this as much as I do at mealtime.
- TASTE: These savory chicken thighs are seasoned to perfection and topped with tangy sour cream. And they are wrapped around a rice filling that is full of sweet onions and carrots.
- TEXTURE: The chicken is so juicy and the rice filling is nice and tender. The sauteed vegetables are just the right softness.
- TIME: This dish takes 1 hour 40 minutes to make.
- EASE: While there is a bit of prep work involved in this recipe, it is fairly simple to manage.
- Skin-on Chicken Thighs- If deboning chicken is something you don’t like to do, don’t hesitate to purchase boneless chicken thighs for this recipe.
- Montreal Chicken Seasoning– This mix of seasonings will enhance the flavor of your chicken perfectly. But you can use a different blend if you prefer.
- Sour Cream– Use full fat sour cream to add rich and creamy flavor and help these chicken thighs brown beautifully.
- Calrose Rice– This medium grain rice is slightly sticky, but not too much. It will help hold the filling together.
Add-ins and Substitutions
- Add cheese- You can add provolone cheese, cream cheese, cheddar cheese, or mozzarella to the filling of these Rice Stuffed Chicken Thighs.
- Substitute different spices- You can use five spice, garlic powder, onion powder, parsley, red pepper flakes, or chili powder for a different flavor in these thighs.
- Add pomegranate- Adding pomegranate seeds will give a tart, sweet flavor to this chicken dish to complement the savory elements.
- Add some bacon- Cook and chop up some bacon and then add the pieces to the filling.
How to Make Rice Stuffed Chicken Thighs
- Debone the chicken. Debone each chicken thigh using a sharp knife.
- Season the chicken. On a piece of plastic wrap, place 1 or 2 chicken thighs, skin down. Season each thigh with salt, pepper, and Montreal chicken seasoning.
- Flatten them. Place another piece of plastic wrap over the seasoned thighs and beat them with a meat mallet until they are about 1/4-inch thick. Set aside.
- Cook the rice. Rinse the rice a few times with cold water, then place it in a saucepan and add enough water to fill about 3-4 inches above the rice. Once the rice comes to a boil, add 1/2 tsp salt and bring the heat down to medium-low. Cook for about 11-12 minutes, or until it’s almost done.
- Strain and rinse. Strain the rice into a mesh colander and rinse with cold water.
- Saute the onions and carrots. In a skillet, melt butter over medium-high heat, add diced onion, and sauté until it becomes translucent. Then add in the shredded carrot and cook for another 5 minutes.
- Combine the rice and veggies. In bowl, mix the rice, sautéed carrot and onion, and garlic.
Pro Tip: Rinse your rice before and after cooking to get rid of excess starch that will make the rice gummy.
- Fill and roll the thighs. In the middle of each chicken thigh add about 2-4 tbsp of the rice mixture. Roll each thigh tightly, making sure to keep the rice from coming out of the sides.
- Top with sour cream. Preheat the oven to 370 degrees Fahrenheit. Place each rolled chicken thigh in a 9×13 baking dish and brush the tops of each roll with sour cream.
- Bake. Cover with foil and bake for 25 minutes, making sure the foil isn’t touching the chicken skin. Then, remove the foil, drain out some of the excess oil that has accumulated in the pan, and bake for 25 more minutes. If you want to add a little color, lightly sprinkle the tops with paprika and bake for another 5-6 more minutes. Serve.
- Carefully debone the meat- Be careful not to cut through the chicken thighs when you take out the bones. Doing so will make it hard to wrap around the filling.
- Wrap the chicken in plastic wrap before flattening- To avoid chicken juices flying, place your chicken on plastic wrap and topped with it so it contains everything while flattening.
- Don’t overfill the chicken thighs- When you add the filling, only use about 2-4 tablespoons so that you are able to wrap and close the chicken without it spilling out the sides.
- Add a little color- At the end of the cook time, add some paprika on top of the chicken and bake for another 5-6 more minutes for extra beautiful color.
Yes, you should pound your chicken thighs to the size you need before baking. Raw chicken is malleable, but once it is cooked, the shape is set and can only be cut.
Chicken thighs are dark meat and they tend to become more tender the longer you cook them. This is because they have more fat that can render down and keep the meat moist so it doesn’t dry out like chicken breasts, which are white meat.
This Rice Stuffed Chicken Thighs recipe is delicious with other dishes, it’s so versatile. Serve it with potatoes, vegetables, salads, or soups.
- Salad: Serve this meal with a Strawberry Feta Spinach Salad, Broccoli Salad With Bacon and Cheese, Cucumber Tomato Feta Salad, or Cabbage Cucumber Salad.
- Vegetables: Enjoy these chicken thighs with some Crispy Air Fryer Broccoli, Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Air Fryer Green Beans, or Bacon Wrapped Asparagus.
- Soups: Pair these Rice Stuffed Chicken Thighs with a bowl of Cream of Mushroom Soup, Potato Leek Soup, Tortellini Soup, or Easy French Onion Soup.
- Potatoes: Serve this dish with some Super Creamy Mashed Potatoes, Scalloped Potatoes, Air Fryer Baked Potatoes, or Air Fryer Potato Wedges.
Make This Recipe in Advance
Make ahead: You can prepare the filling and flatten the chicken thighs ahead of time. Fill and wrap the chicken, place them in the baking dish, and cover. Refrigerate for a day before baking.
Storing: Store these Rice Stuffed Chicken Thighs in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Reheat them in the oven or microwave.
Freeze: You can freeze this dish covered in foil and plastic wrap for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge and warm in the oven.
More Tasty Chicken Dishes!
This recipe was originally posted January 14, 2015, we’ve tweaked it a bit since then. This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here.
Full Recipe Instructions
Rice Stuffed Chicken Thighs
For the chicken thighs
- 12-14 deboned chicken thighs with skin on
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Montreal chicken seasoning
- 2 tbsp sour cream
- Debone each chicken thigh using a sharp knife. Be careful not to cut through the chicken thighs.
- On a piece of plastic wrap place 1 or 2 chicken thighs skin down. Season each thigh with salt, pepper, and Montreal chicken seasoning.
- Place another piece of plastic wrap over the seasoned thighs and beat with a meat mallet until the chicken is about 1/4 inch thick. Once all the chicken is beaten down, set aside.
- Rinse the rice a few times with cold water. Place the rice in a saucepan and add enough water to fill about 3-4 inches above the rice. Once the rice comes to a boil, add 1/2 tsp salt and bring the heat down to medium-low. Cook for about 11-12 or until it's almost done.
- Strain the rice into a mesh colander and rinse with cold water.
- In a skillet, melt butter over medium high heat, add diced onion and sauté until it becomes translucent. Then add in the shredded carrot and cook for another 5 minutes.
- In bowl, mix the rice, sautéed carrot and onion, and garlic.
- In the middle of each chicken thigh add about 2-4 tbsp of the rice mixture. Roll each thigh tightly, making sure to keep the rice from coming out of the sides.
- Preheat the oven to 370 degrees F. Place each rolled chicken thigh in a 9×13 baking dish and brush the tops of each roll with sour cream.
- Cover with foil and bake for 25 minutes. Make sure that the foil is not touching the chicken, it will stick to the chicken and tear the skin. Once 25 minutes go by, remove the foil. At this point there will be a lot of excess oil and liquid in the dish. Drain out some the oil and bake for 25 more minutes. If you want to add a little color, lightly sprinkle the tops with paprika and bake for another 5-6 more minutes.