Of all the easy recipes out there for chicken and rice, this Indian Ginger Chicken and Rice is an all-time favorite. The roasted chicken, seasoned with bold and aromatic spices, is super tender with the crispiest skin!
Then, we drizzle it with a cooling citrus yogurt sauce and serve it over a bed of delicious jeweled rice.
This is homemade Indian food at its best. And you won’t believe how easy it is to make!
What’s in Indian Ginger Chicken and Rice
Our Indian Ginger Chicken starts with a dry spice rub. Some recipes start with marinated chicken, but we are going for more of a tandoori vibe, so we’re using dry spices.
In addition to ginger, many of these spices are commonly found in Indian cooking. Here’s what you’ll need:
- Ground ginger. Because we are pan-searing the chicken before we roast it, dry spices are the best idea. If you really love a strong flavor of ginger and want to emphasize this flavor, use 1/2 cup of fresh ginger or ginger paste instead.
- Garlic powder
- Curry powder
- Ground cumin seeds
- Ground coriander
- Turmeric powder
- Cayenne powder
Together, these spices smell amazing and can be used on more than just chicken. You should have some spice rub left over, so save it in an airtight container and use it to season fish, rice or grilled vegetables.
The jeweled rice is the perfect complement to this chicken dish. I love how the sweetness balances the boldness of the chicken. So good. I’d eat the rice all by itself. Here’s what you’ll need:
How to make Indian Ginger Chicken and Rice
My favorite piece of chicken is a chicken thigh, and that’s what we are using for this dish. We’ll season our chicken with the Indian spice blend and sear it in a cast iron skillet. Once our chicken is crispy on the outside, we’ll finish the cooking process in the oven.
Make the rice while the chicken is finishing, and it will all come out at the same time. The entire process should only take about 30 minutes!
If you prefer chicken breasts, I’d recommend using a bone-in, skin-on breasts. In the event that you’re using boneless, skinless chicken breast, you can still make this recipe work.
Since the fat content will be lower with skinless breasts, add a few tablespoons of oil when you’re cooking the chicken in the skillet and reduce the oven time to 7-9 minutes.
How to get the crispiest skin on chicken pieces
Here is the most consistent method for getting crispy chicken skin:
- Start with a hot cast iron skillet.
- Place chicken, skin side down, into the skillet.
- Cook the chicken until the fat renders and the skin starts to crackle. Then, flip it. The chicken should release immediately from the pan when you go to flip it. If you feel any resistance at all, you’re flipping it too soon.
- Finish the chicken in a 400 degree oven for 15 minutes.
How to serve Indian Ginger Chicken and Rice
With a beautiful balance of protein, carbs and veggies, this Indian ginger chicken curry recipe only has one thing missing. Naan bread!
I’d never dream of eating a bite of Indian cuisine without a soft, chewy piece of Indian bread, baked until golden brown. You won’t regret trying my recipe!
Don’t skip the citrus yogurt sauce
The citrus yogurt is a cooling complement to the chicken that I wouldn’t leave out. Unlike other Indian chicken curry dishes, this Indian ginger chicken recipe is not a saucy dish. So the yogurt sauce gives it some moisture, which I like, especially as it mixes together with the rice.
In a pinch, substitute lemon juice for the lime juice.
When you make this Indian Ginger Chicken and Rice, I’d love to hear about it! Drop a rating or leave a comment below. Enjoy!
For other Indian-inspired recipes, try these:
- Indian Roasted Cauliflower Curry with Coconut Rice
- The Ultimate Chicken Tikka Masala Recipe
- Raita (Indian Yogurt Dip for Naan and Biryani)
For more chicken dinner recipes, try these:
- Old Fashioned Chicken and Vegetable Stew
- Chicken Shawarma with Tahini Yogurt Sauce
- Crispy Italian Chicken Sandwich
Indian Ginger Chicken and Rice
- 8 chicken thighs skin on
- 1 Tbsp. ground ginger
- 1 Tbsp. garlic powder
- 1 Tbsp. paprika
- 1 Tbsp. curry powder
- 2 tsp. kosher salt
- 1 tsp. ground cumin
- 1 tsp. ground coriander
- 1 tsp. turmeric powder
- 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
The Citrus Yogurt
- 1 cup Greek yogurt
- 1/4 cup lime juice
- 1 cup uncooked basmati or jasmine rice
- 1 Tbsp. unsalted butter
- 1 shallot minced
- 1/4 cup golden raisins
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 4 cups baby spinach leaves rinsed and dried
- Combine all dry spices in a bowl. Pat the chicken thighs dry with paper towels. Sprinkle chicken generously with the spice rub, using your fingers to press down so it sticks.
- Whisk the yogurt and lime juice together in a small bowl. Thin with additional lime juice or a little water if desired. Set aside.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Heat a cast iron skillet over a medium flame. Place chicken skin side down into the skillet. Allow to cook until fat renders and skin crackles, about 8-10 minutes. When chicken releases easily from the pan, flip it over and transfer the skillet to the oven. Cook for an additional 15 minutes.
- While the chicken is cooking, make the rice: Melt butter in a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat. Saute the shallots until soft. Stir in the rice and coat with the butter mixture. Pour in the broth, raisins and salt. Bring to to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer over low heat, covered, until rice is tender (about 15-20 minutes).
- Remove chicken from the oven and baste with the juices from the pan. Stir the spinach leaves into the rice until wilted. Place chicken onto a bed of rice and drizzle with the citrus yogurt.