Home Quick Meal Cilantro Orange Chicken with Rice and Beans Recipe

Cilantro Orange Chicken with Rice and Beans Recipe

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This golden Cilantro Orange Chicken is so flavorful, crisped to golden brown perfection, and just very finger-licking good! Served with rice, beans, and a quick homemade pineapple salsa.

This is a brand new recipe that’s part of our Spring 2023 SOS Series – in other words, EASY recipes! View our full collection of SOS recipes here.

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In This Post: Everything You Need For Cilantro Orange Chicken


JUICINESS alert! This golden Cilantro Orange Chicken is so flavorful, crisped to golden brown perfection, and just very finger-licking good. You’re going to need some napkins.

When I’m being normal, I usually serve it with rice, beans, and quick homemade pineapple salsa – which all just works together so well, you know? It has a Cuban feel to it: a mojo-like sauce with rice and beans and some tropical fruit on the plate for good measure. Yum. Yum yum yum.

But the beautiful thing is that if you don’t have time or patience for the extras, or you’re your most hungry and desperate self, the chicken can very much stand on its own.

It’s rare for me to really love a “plain chicken” recipe, but this chicken is eat-directly-off-the-pan delicious. Just brush that burnished chicken with some extra sauce straight out of the oven, pass me a couple skewers, and I am done. It’s all I need! Just a snack-turned-dinner standing over the stove.

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Source Notes: I got the idea for this recipe from this Milkstreet cookbook. I played around with it a lot with things I thought I wanted: added limes, added spices, etc. but ended up just loving the original version plus vinegar for more punch! It’s delicious.

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Description

This golden Cilantro Orange Chicken is so flavorful, crisped to golden brown perfection, and just very finger-licking good! Served with rice, beans, and a quick homemade pineapple salsa.


Cilantro Orange Sauce:

Chicken:

Optional / For Serving:


  1. If you’re using wood skewers, start soaking them!
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Turn on the broiler, and make sure one of the oven racks is way up at the top, about 6 inches from the heating element.
  3. Place chicken in a large mixing bowl. 
  4. Combine the sauce ingredients in a small bowl.
  5. Pour only half of the sauce over the chicken and toss to coat; reserve the other half of the sauce for later. Thread the chicken pieces onto skewers, or you can just let the excess sauce drip off and add the chicken directly to your sheet pan! If you want (I do!) season the chicken with a little pinch of extra salt.
  6. Broil for 12 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through and has a burnished and golden exterior.
  7. Optional – mix a little bit of the reserved sauce with the diced pineapple/mango/avocado to make a little “salsa.”
  8. Brush the golden brown chicken with reserved sauce. Serve chicken with rice, beans, and your fruit salsa! Fresh, juicy and savory, so good.
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Notes

My oven has high / low broil settings – I use the high broil for this recipe.

If you’re using wood skewers, make sure you soak them in water for 20-30 minutes before threading the chicken on and baking.

When using parchment paper, mine usually gets a bit brittle around the edges but stays intact throughout the middle of the pan due to the moisture from the sauce and the chicken. This article says you can use parchment for a broil, and it has always worked for me! But if you’re feeling unsure about it you can use aluminum foil.

The sauce has a lot of salt, and that is on purpose – you’re only putting half of the sauce on the chicken, and even then, not all of it will actually bake into the chicken. If you’re worried about it, you can start with 1 teaspoon in the sauce and just add extra salt to taste the chicken itself during or after baking.

I like this yellow rice, and this precooked yellow rice. For beans, I like these refried beans, or these ready-to-serve black beans.

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: Cuban-Inspired

Keywords: cilantro chicken, garlic chicken, cilantro garlic chicken, rice bowl, chicken skewers

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Do I Have To Use Skewers?

Nope. You can place the chicken directly onto a parchment-lined baking sheet and position the pan 4-6 inches below the broiler. You’ll get the same juicy-delicious burnishing on the outside of the chicken without the work of the skewers! (But… if you have time, the skewers are definitely fun.) You can use these simple wood skewers* or metal skewers* to use over and over again!

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What If I Don’t Like Cilantro?

I would recommend another herb like parsley, basil, or maybe some oregano. Green onion could be good, too.

Do I Need To Marinate The Chicken?

I didn’t marinate the chicken – it was still great, especially because the sauce has a lot of flavor and you’re going to brush that over the chicken again before eating it. This is an SOS recipe (aka easy recipe) so we’re trying to keep the whole process simple and streamlined!

But if you had time and you wanted to marinate the chicken, I think that would be delicious! Just be sure to save some of your sauce in a separate container so you can use it for brushing after it’s done.

What About Grilling?

Yes! This would be so great on the grill. Here in Minnesota, we are not in grill season quite yet, so at the moment I prefer to just pop them in the oven. But if you’ve got your grill up and running, by all means!

What’s a Good Vegetarian Substitution?

I think you could do something similar with roasted cauliflower, sweet potatoes, or mushrooms! For a protein option, I’d try coating crispy baked tofu in this sauce and then roasting it for a few extra minutes to get it caramelized.


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