Chicken & Chorizo Paella

Chicken & Chorizo Paella

They say your taste buds change every seven years. This dish is proof of that for me because it’s something I never would have tried a few years ago, but I love it! Evidently my new and improved taste buds now appreciate bell peppers, onions and peas! I was really excited when I saw chicken chorizo at the grocery store and I immediately came home and started looking at paella recipes. I’m still not a big seafood fan (c’mon, taste buds!) so I decided to make mine with chicken and chorizo sausage and it was a perfect combination for me.

When I was adapting this Chicken & Chorizo Paella recipe to make it my own, I reduced the amount of rice but forgot to correspondingly use less broth. As a result, the rice took a really long time to soak up all the extra liquid (oops). The recipe below is corrected, but if the paella in my photo looks a little too wet, that’s the reason. *If you have a paella pan or a wok or sauté pan that isn’t nonstick, you might want to use it for this recipe to get that traditional crust on the bottom of your paella. I only have nonstick pans, so mine didn’t have that (I loved it just the same, it’s just a matter of taste and what pans you have available to you). **Alternately, if you have a pan that can go from stovetop to oven, you can start this on the stovetop and once all the ingredients have been added just move it to the oven and bake uncovered at 400 degrees for 20 minutes, or until no liquid remains.

I loved this dish and thought it also made great leftovers. It’s a hearty meal for the points, and it’s packed with chicken and spicy sausage and flavored with tasty saffron and paprika. I’m so glad I’m branching out and discovering I like new things. Bring it on taste buds! I can’t wait to see what’s next.

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Chicken & Chorizo Paella

Yield: 8 (1 cup) servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 12 oz chicken chorizo, cut into diagonal slices (I used one 12 oz package of Zweigle’s which is pre-cooked and just needs to be heated)
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon smoked Spanish paprika (pimento) or regular paprika
  • 1 ½ cups whole grain brown rice (I used Uncle Ben’s)
  • 1 pinch saffron threads
  • salt, to taste
  • black pepper, to taste
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3 cups fat free reduced sodium chicken broth
  • 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite size pieces
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • 1 tomato, chopped

Directions:

  1.  In a paella pan or large sauté pan* (see above), heat the oil and add the chicken. Cook chicken until cooked through. Remove chicken to a plate with a spoon and set aside. Add the sausage to the skillet and brown. Add onion, pepper and garlic. Cook for about three minutes, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender.
  2. Add the rice, paprika, saffron, salt, black pepper and bay leaves and stir to combine and coat rice. Add broth and bring to a boil. Add the chicken, frozen peas and tomato and stir to mix well.** Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 20 minutes. Remove the lid and continue to simmer for an additional 20 minutes or until all liquid is evaporated. Fluff with a fork and serve.

MyWW SmartPoints per (1 cup) serving: (SP calculated using the recipe builder on weightwatchers.com)

Green: 7 SmartPoints/ Blue: 6 SmartPoints/ Purple: 3 SmartPoints

WEIGHT WATCHERS POINTS PLUS:
7 per serving (P+ calculated using the recipe builder on weightwatchers.com)

NUTRITION INFORMATION:
336 calories, 34 g carbs, 4 g sugars, 12 g fat, 3 g saturated fat, 25 g protein, 3 g fiber (from myfitnesspal.com)

Adapted from epicurious