This street vendor cart style chicken and rice recipe is PACKED with amazing Mediterranean flavors! It’s super easy and quick to make this recipe at home and turns out absolutely delicious. Such a simple way to make any day feel like you’re a tourist family on vacation! You can serve it as rice and chicken bowls with chopped up lettuce, tomatoes and slices of pita bread for scooping – or as crowd pleasing pita or flatbread sandwiches. These would be the perfect lunch or dinner to serve at a carnival or circus themed birthday party this summer or anytime of year. Chicken and rice are always the popular favorite with even the pickiest eaters – but this is about to become your go to family night dinner EVERYONE will love! The sauce is what really elevates this recipe from “delicious and we really liked it” to “Total keeper – must make again SOON!” status.
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Before you forget, make sure to PIN THE IMAGE ABOVE so you can easily find your way back! Your family is going to be requesting this recipe over and over again, and you are going to LOVE how easy it is to prepare!
Our two favorite ways to enjoy this crazy good meal are as bowls filled with the chicken, rice, chopped lettuce and tomatoes, with cut up pita bread or pita chips for scooping up all the deliciousness – or by filling up cute deli baskets with pita or flatbread sandwiches so they’re a little easier (and more fun) for kids to eat.
Either way, you’re going to have smiles and happy tummies all the way around the table.
The marinade for the chicken is SO good. Fresh oregano plus coriander, paired with garlic and lemon juice create the Mediterranean flavor combination of your street cart food loving dreams.
Turning your counter or picnic table into a party food station is the way to go. It’s SO easy to set out the chopped up chicken, tomatoes, lettuce, rice and pita bread so everyone can go down the line and create their own amazing bowl or sandwiches.
The sauce is truly the star of this dish, though. Fresh chopped italian flat leaf parsley, greek yogurt, mayonnaise and lemon juice combine to create the BEST topping and dipping sauce for this fun to make (and eat) meal.
So which way do you think YOUR family will love the most?
As Pita sandwiches in fun baskets with deli basket liners to give it a real carnival feel?
Or delicious bowls with cut up pita bread or chips for scooping and dipping?
Whichever way you decide – make EXTRA sauce for dipping and topping. You’ll be glad you did. If you end up with any leftover, save it in the fridge for dipping fresh veggies or to use as a scrumptious salad dressing. Have I mentioned it’s really, REALLY yummy?
|Prep Time||1 hour|
|Cook Time||15 minutes|
- 1/2 Cup Mayonnaise
- 1/2 Cup Plain Greek Yogurt
- 1 Tablespoon Granulated White Sugar
- 2 Tablespoons White Vinegar
- 1 teaspoon Lemon Juice fresh squeezed is best but bottled will do in a pinch!
- 1/4 Cup Flat Leaf Italian Parsley fresh and chopped (MAKE SURE TO GET FLAT LEAF PARSLEY! The curly isn’t nearly as good)
- Fresh Ground Black Pepper to taste
- Kosher Salt (coarse) to taste
- 2 Tablespoons Lemon Juice fresh squeezed is best but bottled will do in a pinch!
- 1 Tablespoon Oregano fresh and chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon Ground Coriander
- 3 cloves Fresh Garlic roughly chopped (apx. 1 1/2 Tablespoons)
- 1/4 Cup Light Olive Oil
- Kosher Salt (coarse) to taste
- Freshly Ground Black Pepper to taste
- 2 Pounds Boneless, Skinless Chicken Thighs 6 to 8 thighs – trimmed of the extra fat
- 3 Tablespoons Butter (or olive oil if you prefer)
- 1 Package Pita Bread or Chips
- Fresh Tomatoes chopped
- Fresh Lettuce chopped
- 4 Cups Cooked Rice Your choice – basmati, long grain or jasmine are our favorites with this!
In a small bowl, whisk all of the sauce ingredients (mayonnaise, yogurt, sugar, vinegar, lemon juice, chopped flat leaf parsley) together or blend in a food processor if you want it really smooth. Salt and pepper to taste and refrigerate in an airtight container so the flavors meld together for at least an hour. (We usually double the sauce recipe so we have plenty to use as extra dip – it’s SO good!)
Use a blender or food processor to blend the lemon juice, oregano, coriander, garlic, 1/4 cup of light olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste. Place the marinade with the raw chicken in a large ziplock bag. Close the bag and mix it around well so all of the chicken is coated. Marinate it in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour, but no more than 4 hours.
When marinating time is up – heat the butter (or oil if you prefer) in a 12-inch heavy stainless steel or cast iron skillet over medium-high heat for about 2 minutes or until lightly smoking depending on your stovetop.
Add the chicken pieces to the preheated butter or oil and salt and pepper – (we love extra pepper on this dish). Cook them on the first side without disturbing on medium-high heat for about 4 minutes or until they are lightly browned on the first side. Turn the chicken and cook for an additional 4 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and continue to cook until they are completely cooked through and an instant read thermometer reads 165 degrees Fahrenheit – about 4 minutes longer.
Transfer the cooked chicken to a cutting board to rest for 5 minutes. Once the 5 minutes is up – chop the chicken into 1/4 inch chunks and transfer the chunks to a serving bowl.
Set out the bowl of chopped chicken with your refrigerated sauce, the chopped tomatoes, lettuce, cooked rice and pita bread or chips to serve and enjoy!
*** If you’d like to make really yummy “yellow” Mediterranean rice to go with it, I’ll be adding that recipe soon, but until then, it’s in the comments section of this post!
Find this delicious recipe and more your family will love online at DreaminginDIY.com
Don’t forget to PIN THE IMAGE BELOW so you can find this yummy recipe again quickly! Your family is going to be driving you nuts requesting this one – but you’ll be happy to oblige!
If you’re looking for more chicken recipes your family will love – come take a look at all of OUR favorites! These are recipes we never get sick of, are easy to make, and never disappoint. Take some chicken out of the freezer to thaw while you choose one for tonight. CLICK HERE or on the image below to check out our family favorite CHICKEN RECIPES to add to your meal plan this week!