Dairy Farmers of Canada

Middle-Eastern Inspired Chicken and Rice

Our dietitians' favourite

Middle-Eastern cuisine is known for its deliciously savoury dishes and this one is a worthy example. Try our take on it (it includes milk!) – you’ll love it!

  • Prep: 20 min
  • Cooking: 40 min - 45 min
Yields 4 - 6 servings
lebanese chicken and rice


  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 cup (250 mL) Milk
  • 1 cup (250 mL) chicken stock
  • 1 lb (450 g) chicken breast
  • Freshly ground salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 large onion minced
  • 3 tbsp (45 mL) butter
  • 3/4 lb (335 g) ground lamb or ground beef
  • 1 - 1/2 cups (375 mL) long grain rice
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) ground cardamom
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) ground Jamaican pepper
  • 2/3 cup (160 mL) slivered almonds toasted
  • 3 tbsp (45 mL) pine nuts toasted (optional)
  • Ground cinnamon
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In a pot, combine cinnamon stick, milk, chicken broth, chicken and seasonings. Bring to a full boil, reduce the heat and poach, uncovered, for 8 min. Remove from heat, cover and set aside 10 min at room temperature to finish cooking. Strain the chicken, reserving the cinnamon stick and the cooking liquid for later.

Meanwhile, in a pan, sweat the onion in butter for 5 min without browning. Add lamb and cook about 8 min, crumbling the meat with a wooden spoon or a fork.

Add the rice, reserved cinnamon stick, bay leaves and spices. Add salt and pepper. Stir 2 min. Add 2-1/2 cups (625 mL) of the reserved cooking liquid. Bring to a full boil, reduce heat and cook over very low heat for about 15 min.

While the rice is cooking, shred the chicken and reserve in a warm oven.

Arrange the rice on a serving platter. Top with the shredded chicken and sprinkle with the roasted almonds and pine nuts. At the last minute, sprinkle with a dash of cinnamon. Serve with your favorite green vegetable.


You may use breasts or thighs or a combination of the two, so long as the meat is skinless and boneless.

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Nutritional information

Per serving
Energy: 509 Calories
Protein: 36 g
Carbohydrate: 45 g
Fat: 20 g
Fibre: 2.7 g
Sodium: 361 mg

Top 5 Nutrients

(% DV*)
Calcium: 11 % / 121 mg
Folate: 58 %
Niacin: 60 %
Selenium: 85 %
Vitamin B12: 88 %