Team Alpha’s Chicken Paella

May 23, 2019

For dinner, we decided to put our own twist on a traditional Spanish dish: paella! Instead of using a mixture of seafood in our paella, we decided to use chicken, which is usually much less expensive and more accessable to college-aged students like ourselves! Not only does our dish not break the bank, but it’s also loaded with high energy-yielding, nutrient-dense ingredients! And it doesn’t stop there: it also just so happens to be delicious!

Chicken Paella (serves 5-6)


  • 1 1/2 pounds of raw chicken breast
  • 1 teaspoon of paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2-3 garlic cloves, minced
  • Splash of white wine of your choice
  • 1 1/4 cups of brown rice
  • 2- 14 ounce cans of diced tomatoes
  • 3 cups of chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon of turmeric
  • 1 large green bell pepper, sliced
  • Chopped cilantro (optional)


  1. Butterfly the chicken breasts. Season with paprika, garlic powder, salt, and black pepper.
  2. Heat one tablespoon of olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Once olive oil is heated, add the chicken to the pan and cook until brown on both sides. Once browned, place the chicken on a cookie sheet and put it in the oven at 415 degrees to finish cooking.
  3. In the same large pan the chicken was just taken out of, add an additional tablespoon of olive oil. Add in onion and garlic. Cook until the onion begins to soften. Stir a splash of white wine into the onion and garlic mixture.
  4. After the onions, garlic, and wine have cooked together for about 2-3 minutes, add the brown rice, diced tomatoes, chicken broth, and turmeric. Allow mixture to come to a boil.
  5. Add the bell pepper into the rice and broth mixture. Turn the heat down to low and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until the rice is fully cooked.
  6. Take off the heat and stir in the chicken. Cover and let sit for 5 minutes.
  7. Add chopped cilantro on top and enjoy!


  • Taste: 9
    • Some of us opted out of putting cilantro on top, but the overall taste with or without this garnish was really good– lots of umami from the rice and chicken with some added heat from the spice combination we chose!
  • Consistency: 7
    • The rice was a little crunchy, so in the future, we would let it cook a little bit more before digging in!
  • Visual appeal: 9
    • The tumeric and vegtables in our dish made it very colorful and bright!
  • Smell: 10
    • The delicious aroma of our dish filled the room (and even the main floor of Blue Ridge, evidently!)
  • Creativity: 8
    • Paella is typically made with a variety of seafood, so using chicken was definitely an “American” twist on this traditional Spanish dish! We also wanted to cater this recipe to the college crowd, so realistically in terms of budget and availability, chicken was the right choice for us!