Chicken with Bulgur and Peppers. Or Bulgur con Pollo. Or Chicken with Spanish Bulgur. Or something.

January 9, 2012 · 14 comments

in chicken/poultry,dairy-free,healthy,quick and easy,rice and grains

Like most people who cook on a daily, or near daily, basis, I love the “one pot meal.” Being able to  have your protein, starch, and vegetables all cook away in the same vessel with minimum effort (and only one pot to clean at the end) is a pretty good deal.

The problem I run into is that  I often have a hard time making them with complex carbs. White rice is easy enough to add to a one-meal concoction, but try throwing brown rice or barley in there and you are often left with rice that hasn’t cooked thoroughly or a piece of meat that is so overcooked it ruins the happy vibe of the one-pot meal.

But other grains that take less time to cook, like bulgur, which is one of my absolute favorite starchy sides, are perfect. You may recognize it as the main ingredient in tabouli,  but it does so much more. We easily eat it once a week. The most common way I prepare it is to make it into a pilaf, sauteing just a little onion & garlic in the beginning, cooking it in chicken broth, and topping it with toasted pine nuts or slivered almonds. I’ve also made this recipe as a side before, sans the chicken. Bulgur takes less time to cook than even white rice, and easily outweighs rice’s nutrition benefits, too (a serving has 50 less calories but 6 more grams of dietary fiber).

This meal is sort of a play on arroz con pollo, or chicken with rice. The ingredients and flavor profile are similar, but the arroz is obviously replaced with bulgur (which I have no idea how to say in Spanish, sorry. I mean, lo siento!).

Boneless/skinless chicken thighs would be a great replacement for the breast in this recipe. You can use bone-in, too, but I would simmer them in the liquid for about 5 minutes before adding the bulgur, to assure they get fully cooked.

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{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Miguel Ángel Quiñonez January 9, 2012 at 9:06 am

Bulgar in Spanish is “Trigo burgol” or “trigo partido.”
That translates into “Bulgar Wheat” or “Cracked Wheat.”

Love your recipes. I live in México and do all my own cooking so I have made
many of them and look forward to trying many more.



elly January 9, 2012 at 9:12 am

Thanks for the kind words and also for the Spanish lesson, Miguel! :)


Nicole, RD January 9, 2012 at 1:30 pm

I love the idea of this dish and I want to use more bulgur in my cooking. It’s one grain I’m least familiar with, unfortunately! Like you said, it’s super healthy and packed with fiber!


Urban Wife January 9, 2012 at 4:04 pm

I love bulgur and regret always forgetting to buy it at the grocery. Great meal…thanks for sharing!


Peter G | Souvlaki For The Soul January 9, 2012 at 4:59 pm

Another fantastic one pot wonder Elly…I have bulgur lying about in the pantry…time to get on with using more of it!


Joanne January 10, 2012 at 5:29 am

I rarely add carbs to my dishes, mostly out of laziness. I never feel like breaking out another pot! Bulgur IS one of my favorites though because of how quick and good for you it is. This meal sounds delicious. One of these quick and easy dinners that you can feel good about!


Nikki January 10, 2012 at 2:23 pm

I’ve never tried bulgur. I really need to stop with the white rice already and convert to something healthier! :)


Stamatia January 11, 2012 at 6:12 pm

Made this tonight – it was delish! Thanks!


elly January 11, 2012 at 7:47 pm

So happy you enjoyed it, Stamatia!


bellini January 12, 2012 at 6:48 am

I have never tried bulgur whet outside of my favourite tabbouleh so I think it is time to change that.


Melanie January 12, 2012 at 7:54 am

We had this for dinner the other night. I just happened to have some bulgar sitting in a baggie on my counter & this was perfect to use some of it up. I must have bought too much for something else awhile back. We’d never had bulgar in a side dish. Hubby was skeptical at first but we love it. Better than couscous we thought. I used smoked paprika on the chicken & also the cumin. Thanks for the recipe!!


elly January 13, 2012 at 7:26 am

Glad you both enjoyed it, Melanie!


Jessica January 13, 2012 at 1:48 pm

I need to give bulgur a try. Actually, in general I need to expand my starchy side dish repertoire. But first I’ll start with bulgur and this dish!


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