Paleo-ish Chicken and “Rice”

Growing up in a Portuguese family, rice was always a fabulous meal. It was so much more than the boil in a bag and eat with butter experience. My grandmother, mother, and aunts can whip up a rice dish without even thinking about it. Luckily, I have learned from the best!

Instead of rice, I used quinoa. Depending where you look, there are different verdicts about whether or not quinoa is paleo. It seems like the majority of these sources place it in the “not paleo category”. Now, as I have said before, I am not following a strictly paleo diet. I make exceptions like peanut butter and soy products. I know what works for my body. For me, quinoa is very satisfying, a good source of protein, and delish. It definitely doesn’t fall in the cheat meal category for me!

With that being said, it’s up to you to figure out if you want eat it or not. Do some research and decide what works for you and your body!

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Ingredients:
4 chicken thighs
1 cup quinoa – rinsed
1 cup peas
1 Tbsp. Olive oil
1 tsp. Paprika
1 small onion – chopped
4 cloves garlic – minced
4 plum tomatoes – diced
1 Tbsp. Red wine vinegar
2 1/2 chicken stock
2 bay leaves
Salt & pepper

1. In a large pot (I use my Le Cruset heavy pot), heat olive oil over high heat. Season chicken thighs with paprika, salt, and pepper, and place skin side down in the hot oil. Cook for 5 minutes or until browned, flip and repeat. Remove from pot, and set aside in a bowl. Lower heat to medium.
2. Add onions and garlic. Sauté for 3 minutes while stirring frequently. Add tomatoes and cook for 5 more minutes. Add red wine vinegar and stir to deglaze pan.
3. Add chicken stock, peas, bay leaves, and quinoa. Stir and then return chicken in a single layer (push each piece down into the mixture).
4. Cover, lower heat to a simmer, and cook for 35 minutes, flipping the chicken halfway through. Once all the stock is absorbed, remove from heat and let rest for 3 minutes before serving.

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