Arroz Con Pollo Easy Costa Rican Recipe

Arroz con pollo Recipe

Arroz con pollo is a popular Costa Rican recipe. Using a rotisserie chicken, this easy family recipe is ready in 30 minutes. Weeknight arroz con pollo!

Course Main Course
Cuisine Latin
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 6 people
Author Christa Jimenez



  • 4 C white rice 
  • 32 oz chicken stock  or broth (optional)
  • 1 tsp achiote/annato paste optional
  • 1 1/2 tsp  Salt 
  • 1 TB oil
  • 1 rotisserie chicken deboned and shredded
  • 1 TB butter
  • 1 can of mixed vegetables  drained
  • handful cilantro
  • 1 red pepper cored, seeded and chopped finely
  • 1 stalk of celery chopped finely optional
  • 1 small white or yellow onion finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, pressed
  • 3 TB ketchup 
  • 3 TB soy sauce 
  • 3 TB Salsa Lizano* 


  1. Start by preparing the rice in the rice cooker. You will prepare the rice the traditional Costa Rican way, lightly coating the bottom of the rice cooker with oil. Measure out the rice and pour it over the oil. Next add the salt and achiote. (Achiote is a colorant commonly used in Latin cooking. It does not affect the flavor of the dish, only the presentation, and for this reason it is optional.  It can be found in most supermarkets in the Latin aisle, or you can order it on Amazon here) (affiliate).
  2. Stir the rice and seasonings to fully coat. Measure out equal parts chicken stock to rice (4 cups) and add to the dry rice and stir again. The chicken stock can be replaced by water in this recipe, but you would want to add a bit more salt, and know that the rice won't have the same flavor.  Cook the rice.
  3. While the rice is cooking, you will begin to make your sofrito, which is the flavor base for the chicken. In a large skillet, melt the butter on medium heat. Once melted, add the cilantro, red pepper, onion and garlic and cook until soft and translucent. This is your sofrito. When the arroz con pollo dish is finished, these ingredients should be imperceptible to the eye, so it is important to chop everything VERY finely.
  4. Next add the chicken and cilantro to the pan, and stir until the cilantro has wilted and the chicken is coated in the sofrito. By this time, the rice should be cooked. Add all of the rice to the skillet and begin to mix everything together.
  5. This is where you will add your ketchup, soy sauce, and Salsa Lizano to the arroz con pollo. I add them one at a time in a circle on the pan, stirring after each addition until the sauces are evenly mixed in. I do find that using the rice paddle from the cooker is the best way to do this. After the sauces have been added, mix in the mixed vegetables. Taste everything to make sure that the arroz con pollo has the right amount to salt. You can adjust the flavor by adding salt, the sauces, or a little water if the flavor is too strong.
  6. Serve arroz con pollo with salad and potato chips or homemade french fries... and an Imperial beer if you are feeling like a fiesta!

Recipe Notes

*Salsa Lizano is a traditional Costa Rican flavoring sauce and used in most dishes to create a distinctly Costa Rican flavor, like in picadillos. It is not spicy.