Bukhari rice with chicken is Saudi Arabia's most popular dish

Bukhari rice with chicken is Saudi Arabia's most popular dish

A Saudi Arabian speciality, bukhari rice is fragrant rice loaded with flavours and spices. The dish which has its origin in Afghanistan is usually served with the perfectly cooked roast chicken. Here is the recipe to easily prepare bukhari rice with chicken.


2 tsp olive oil

1/2 kg basmati rice (soaked for 20 minutes)

1 kg chicken with skin on (cut into 4 huge pieces)

2 large onions

4 green chillies

2 dried limes

100 gm raisins (fried)

50 gm almonds (fried)

1/2 cup boiled chickpeas (optional)

1 carrot (cubed)

1 potato (cubed)

1 cube chicken stock

1 tsp garlic paste

2 tsp tomato paste or ketchup

2 large tomatoes (pureed)

For the bukhari masala

1/2 tsp cumin seeds

3 small cinnamon sticks

4 cardamoms

4 cloves

5 bay leaves

1 tsp black pepper corns


In a heated pan add the cumin seeds, cinnamon, cardamoms, cloves, bay leaves and black pepper corns

Roast until the spices release its aroma

Grind to a fine bukhari masala powder

Heat olive oil (or butter) in a non-stick pan with thick bottom and a fitting lid

Add two cardamom pods, cinnamon sticks and cloves

Add chopped onions and a bit of salt

Sauté until the onions are soft and golden brown

Add the chicken pieces

Add the previously prepared bukhari masala into it

Add the dried limes

Add the tomato paste or ketchup, garlic paste and tomato puree

Add the chicken stock cube

Pour half cup of boiling water

Add the cubed carrots and potatoes, and green chillies

Cook for 15 minutes with the lid on

When this mixture boils, take out the chicken and keep it aside to be grilled later

Taste the broth for seasoning

Add the soaked basmati rice

Stir well and cook with the lid on

When the water is reduced and the rice is well cooked, lower the flame and cook for 8 more minutes with lid on

Grill the chicken and place on top of the flavoured rice which is served in a dish

Garnish generously with fried almonds and raisins.