Simple Chicken and Sausage Paella

by jenna on February 4, 2014


I don’t know about you guys, but I really don’t like to spend more than an hour making dinner on the weeknights.

Actually, I don’t really like to spend more than an hour ever making dinner…unless it’s a special occasion meal or something.Β  I’m sure after the baby comes that hour will whittle down to thirty minutes, but right now I feel like if I can make a really great meal in an hour or less I’m doing good. Adam has a long commute every day and I like to have a good meal waiting when he gets home. I mean, I feel like it’s the least I can do since I get to my job lets me stay at home. Well, last week I surprised him with this chicken and sausage paella and it was a HUGE hit! We both loved it and he ate the leftovers for breakfast for the rest of the week.


What I love most about this paella is that it’s really a one pot meal. Plus, it’s pretty healthy. I mean, you’ve got chicken, veggies and brown rice all cooked in a slightly spicy tomato-y sauce broth. I used chicken thighs here but feel free to substitute with chicken breasts if you prefer.

Seafood is most always a part of traditional paella, but for this easy weeknight version I wanted to use ingredients that I already had on hand {minus the chorizo, which took a special trip to the store to grab but SO worth it}.

Leftovers heat up great! Perfect for guy breakfasts while I nosh on my waffles, maple syrup and eggs. I tried to get Adam to eat “traditional” breakfast foods for a long time before I just threw in the towel and reheated him dinner leftovers like he wanted. This was a huge hit!


Simple Chicken and Sausage Paella

serves 6

Print this Recipe!


1 lb chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces

1 lb chorizo sausage, preferably freshly made from the butcher counter

2 tbsp olive oil

1 yellow onion, small diced

1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes

1 14.5 oz can artichoke hearts, quartered and drained

1/2 cup frozen green peas

3 cups chicken broth

1 1/2 cups uncooked brown rice

2 tsp smoked paprika

2 tsp oregano

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 bay leaf

1/4 tsp red pepper flakes

1/2 tsp salt

1/8 tsp pepper

1 green bell pepper, diced

1 red bell pepper, diced

fresh chopped parsley for serving


Heat 1 tbsp olive oil over medium high heat in a large, heavy-bottomed pot or pan {I use a dutch oven for this but if you have a paella pan, use that}. Once hot, add the chicken and sausage. Cook for about 8 minutes, or until well browned and just cooked through. Remove from pan and place on a plate. Cover with tin foil and set aside.

Add the remaining olive oil to the pot. Turn down the heat a little bit and then add the onion and bell peppers. Saute until onion and peppers soften, then add garlic. Saute for 30 more seconds. Add paprika, red pepper flakes, oregano, salt, pepper and bay leaf. Pour in diced tomatoes and then add the rice.

Add the broth and bring mixture to a boil. Cover with a tight fitting lid and reduce heat to a simmer. Continue simmering for about 30 minutes until the rice has absorbed most of the liquid in the pot.

Add the chicken and sausage back into the pan, as well as the artichoke hearts and peas. Stir well and cook for 5 more minutes, or until heated through. Serve warm with chopped parsley.


~ 1 hour

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{ 61 comments… read them below or add one }

Cara's Healthy Cravings February 4, 2014 at 3:55 am

So many good flavours packed into one dish, I love it!
The smoked paprika and chorizo really make the dish, in my opinion πŸ™‚


Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat February 4, 2014 at 4:18 am

Mmm it’s been SO long since I’ve enjoyed paella. My fave is made with chicken and shrimp but I really don’t discriminate. πŸ˜‰ Like you, I prefer dinner to be ready in an hour or less, and during the week I typically have meals prepped that I’ve made on the weekend because I know that after dinner, I want food fast! This sounds like a great make-ahead meal. Thanks Jenna!


Casey February 4, 2014 at 4:22 am

Looks great Jenna! Is this the sliced chorizo or crumbly kind? (I always get confused on chorizo…I think there is a pork kind but I don’t know which is which…) Thanks!


Nicole February 4, 2014 at 4:29 am

Oh my gosh, I am so ridiculously excited for this recipe. Cannot wait to make it. I love paella.


DessertForTwo February 4, 2014 at 4:50 am

I’m sorta kinda obsessed with all of your chicken thigh recipes! They’re so good! I made your zesty slow cooker chicken stew and loved it! This is next on the list–thanks! πŸ™‚


Isabelle February 4, 2014 at 7:54 am

I wanted to make this slow cooker recipe too (seems sooo good!) but we don’t have Stubb’s marinade here in Canada. What does it taste like? Is it sweet? I’m trying to find something to subtitute the marinade…
Thank you!


Chicago Jogger February 4, 2014 at 5:14 am

This looks great!! Can’t wait to try it. I might sub shrimp for chorizo – yum.


Traci February 4, 2014 at 5:36 am

Saving this recipe! I haven’t seen anything like it for a while so it stood out to me, and changing it up is always good. (I also feel good if I spend under an hour on dinner.)


Kelly Jo February 4, 2014 at 5:46 am

This looks like a meal by boyfriend would love! And I love one-pot meals so it’s a win win πŸ™‚


Liz @ Tip Top Shape February 4, 2014 at 5:49 am

Oooh, this looks amazing!! Wonderful recipe!

That is too funny that Adam eats non-breakfast foods in the morning! Is that something that he did growing up?


Adam's mom February 4, 2014 at 8:24 am

Right after Adam’s first birthday, we found out that he was moderately allergic to eggs so I probably overdid it for years trying to help him avoid them. He loved hot cereals for breakfast. I returned to work when he was 2 1/2 and had a pretty good commute which sometimes meant packable breakfasts like peanut butter and jam sandwiches. I often processed my own peanut butter with Adam intently watching that “magic”. When he outgrew the egg allergy, he decided he just didn’t like eggs but definitely ate his share of pancakes. As a teen and beyond, he would purposely save a portion of his own dinner or request leftovers for breakfast the next morning, depending on what it was. I was just happy to get something in him so didn’t fight it. Jenna’s super smart to give in to this and this yummy looking paella looks like something he would definitely wake up hungry for!


Lauren February 5, 2014 at 10:37 am

Such a cute response, Adam’s Mom! Makes sense! I love all traditional breakfast foods but you make a good argument for eating dinner leftovers at breakfast. Saving a portion of your dinner reduces calorie intake for that meal and eating heartier and nutritionally balanced foods for breakfast helps prevent overeating later in the day. Thanks for sharing! Will definitely bookmark this recipe, Jenna!


Erin | The Law Student's Wife February 4, 2014 at 5:58 am

Party in a pot! I’m also on the “1-hour” dinner schedule and have added this paella to my list of recipes to try. It looks like just the thing my husband and I would love! Loads of veggies (for me) + meat (for him) + spice (for us.) Perfect!


Lisa February 4, 2014 at 6:00 am

I have been searching for an easy paella recipe–going to try this soon! I think my fiance will love it.


Anna February 4, 2014 at 6:04 am

Just wanted to let you know how much I love your blog, especially the recipes. You post it, I have it for dinner the next night. A beautiful relationship in my opinion πŸ™‚

Also, congrats on expecting! Can’t wait to “meet” your baby boy.


Elisabeth February 4, 2014 at 6:44 am

I’m with Adam on breakfast – I work third shift in a hospital & I’ll often eat ‘regular food’ for breakfast. I actually enjoy breakfast foods more for lunch πŸ˜‰


shelly@ohshellsbells February 4, 2014 at 7:04 am

i love the idea of a simple paella. i studied abroad in spain for a summer and ate loads of the stuff, but it’s such an ordeal to recreate it that i almost never have it. This will do nicely πŸ™‚


Chelsea @ Designs on Dinner February 4, 2014 at 7:11 am

I have never made paella, but I just decided on Sunday night to make it after seeing someone post a picture of theirs on Facebook. I always keep shrimp in the freezer, so I think I would definitely use that, but I love that it’s a one-pot meal.


Aaryn @ Insert{Life}Here February 4, 2014 at 7:12 am

You had me at artichoke hearts.


Maryea {happy healthy mama} February 4, 2014 at 7:42 am

This looks gorgeous! I’m sure it tastes even better than it looks. I’m putting this on my to-try list. πŸ™‚


Kelly @ Laughter, Strength, and Food February 4, 2014 at 7:53 am

Looks and sounds yummy! Definitely something that can be made with ingredients that I have on hand…perfect for a weeknight. πŸ™‚


Cassie February 4, 2014 at 8:02 am

I am definitely adding that to my to try list for next week’s eats! I love 1 pot meals!


Bryony @ Bryony Cooks February 4, 2014 at 8:15 am

This looks great! I just got a paella recipe from a Spanish friend of mine, but I think I’ll try this one first. Definitely not as intimidating!


Shannon February 4, 2014 at 8:19 am

I have loved how your eating habits have evolved now that you two are married/living together – dinner for breakfast…how strange! πŸ™‚


jenna February 4, 2014 at 8:52 am

Oh don’t get me wrong, I would never touch this for breakfast! I am an eggs, bacon, pancakes or granola type of gal. That’s just my husband! πŸ˜‰


Alexandra Aimee February 4, 2014 at 10:22 am

This looks delicious, and I really like the addition of the artichoke hearts!

— Alex at Brainy Girls Beauty


Amanda @ Once Upon a Recipe February 4, 2014 at 10:33 am

I’d like to dive right into that pot of goodness! It looks delicious and I love how easy it is to pull together.


Joyce @ MustardSeeds+Hope February 4, 2014 at 11:12 am

this is wonderful. excited to try! so flavorful and simple!


Christina @ The Beautiful Balance February 4, 2014 at 12:56 pm

Definitely thinking I can make this in the slow cooker for my boyfriend πŸ™‚


Alyssa February 4, 2014 at 1:31 pm

I can’t wait to try this! I’m in the market for a dutch oven … do you have any recommendations (on brand, size, etc.)? Looking at the options makes my head spin!


Coty and Mariah@quirksandtwists February 4, 2014 at 3:41 pm

So pumped that there are artichokes in this! I cannot wait to make this!


Jamie February 4, 2014 at 4:32 pm

Does this dish freeze well? It looks delicious and I’m on the look out for freezer-friendly meals I can make before our first baby comes in a couple weeks!


jenna February 4, 2014 at 4:45 pm

No, I wouldn’t freeze this dish because of the rice. I’d stick to more frozen pasta dishes, like lasagna, or something like chili or spaghetti sauce.


Jessica February 26, 2014 at 11:37 am

I w0uld make everything except the rice…freeze that…then when you’re ready to eat just make brown rice (instant)…quick easy meal!


Caity February 4, 2014 at 7:31 pm

Soooo let’s see. Not even 24 hours since this recipe has been up on your blog and already I am sitting here enjoying a big bowl of it πŸ™‚ I have an ongoing list of ‘recipes to try’, but the second I saw this one this morning it immediately jumped to the top. I subbed the sausage for seafood, only because I’m not a huge sausage fan, and added a little saffron because I happened to buy a ‘cheapish’ jar from Trader-J the other day.

I don’t think I’ve ever had paella before in my life and have been meaning to make it forever, so thank you for giving me the final push to experiment! I may not have much to compare it to, but my taste buds are SO happy right now – and so much leftovers!


lindsey February 4, 2014 at 7:56 pm

That comment about getting him to eat traditional breakfast cracked me up! I don’t know anyone who doesn’t enjoy “normal” breakfast food! I don’t think my tastebuds could get down with dinner foods that early.


Morgan February 4, 2014 at 10:50 pm

I am going to try to make a vegetarian version of this…I will use quorn chicken and another non-soy product for sausage. I’m sure it will be just as good πŸ™‚ I love how easily I can adapt your recipes!

I’m totally with adam – except my excuse for eating leftovers for dinner is I fry up an egg and slap it on top. That totally makes chipotle leftover breakfast, am I right? πŸ˜‰


Emily @ Life on Food February 5, 2014 at 2:45 am

Quick weeknight meals are a must. Limited dishes even better. This meal looks amazing. Warm, comforting and lots of leftovers. Sounds perfect to me.


Lia @ Luscious Living February 5, 2014 at 5:56 am

Mmmmm, I like the artichoke hearts in there. I think that’s a great idea. One pot meals are also a life saver, along with time efficient meals. When I’m at home a lot, I’m all for under an hour of cooking, when I work though, it’s gotta be 15 minutes! It’s awfully sweet of you to be so keen to have food ready for him when he gets home! I hope he appreciates it plenty πŸ™‚


kristen February 5, 2014 at 6:06 am

I made this last night with qunioa instead of the brown rice- it came out delicious. Thanks for the great (and easy!) recipe.


Jacki February 5, 2014 at 6:12 am

I am long time reader, but rarely comment but I had to tell you that I made this last night and my husband had 4ths! It was easy, delicious and has already been requested to be added into our rotation (and for me to bring to an oyster roast/pot luck we attend every year)! Thanks for another great recipe!


Crystal February 5, 2014 at 9:00 am

I made this last night and we all loved it! My oldest daughter asked me to pack it in her lunch today. Next time I might put a Low Country spin on it and make it with andouille and shrimp. Thanks for another great family pleasing recipe!


Lauren B. February 5, 2014 at 9:35 am

This looks yummy! And oh no, did you see this? πŸ™

“‘Little House’ star Richard Bull dies at age 89”


jenna February 6, 2014 at 10:53 am

oh no!! so sad! πŸ™


Stephanie @ Whole Health Dork February 5, 2014 at 9:44 am

This looks delicious! My husband would love this! Can’t wait to try. Thanks for the recipe!


Laura @ Lauras Baking Talent February 5, 2014 at 6:31 pm

I’m excited about all the different flavors in this dish. Thanks for sharing.


Carri February 6, 2014 at 7:48 am

Do you think this could be finished in the oven rather than on the stovetop? I like to have my oven on in this cold weather.


jenna February 6, 2014 at 10:52 am

Since I haven’t personally done that, I can’t say for sure, but I would assume it would. I would do 350 degrees for about 40 minutes with the lid on the pot. Let me know how it goes!


Judith Scott February 6, 2014 at 10:47 am

I’m with the majority of you when it comes to dinner at breakfast. I recently took a cruise down the Mekong River from Cambodia to Saigon, and the food was fantastic. They offered local specialties and Western items at every meal. Just to be adventurous I tried Pho for breakfast 1 day…although I love this soup it just didn’t rock me at 8 am.
After that I stuck to the usual, eggs etc. Most Asian countries eat many items we would consider dinnertime things at breakfast.


Jess February 7, 2014 at 8:01 am

What kind of chorizo do you use for this? I’ve seen a couple different kinds in my grocery’s deli case and never know which to get! Thanks!! Can’t wait to make this πŸ™‚


Judy February 8, 2014 at 9:44 am

What’s the difference between a heavy-bottomed pot and a ‘dutch oven’?


Adi February 10, 2014 at 10:03 am

I made this last night — fantastic. So easy and it made oodles so I have lots for leftover work lunches. Great flavour. Thank you for another keeper!!


Danielle February 11, 2014 at 9:27 am

I made this last night and it was so good. I wasn’t too sure about the artichokes, but they were perfect. My husband and I loved it so much, he asked me to make it again next week. Thank you for sharing this yummy dish!


Jenn @ Cakes, Cookies, and Pie Oh My! February 11, 2014 at 2:04 pm

I love one pot easy recipes. This one looks delicious and healthy!


Lisa [With Style & Grace] February 12, 2014 at 3:51 pm

This sounds awesome! definitely pinning/bookmarking!


Maddie February 13, 2014 at 4:57 am

I tried this last night and it was amazing! Pretty easy too. Can’t wait to make it again soon1


Mary February 20, 2014 at 6:29 pm

Just finished making this. Two very enthusiastic thumbs up! I really love this dish Jenna. This time I used shrimp instead of chicken thighs… holy yum!! This recipe will definitely go into my regular rotation. I use 6 cloves of garlic instead of 2, but everything else I followed to a T.


Jennifer March 11, 2014 at 5:22 pm

I changed a bunch of things on this recipe to taste (and to match what I had in my kitchen) but OMG it was so good…. I’m always so grateful for recipes like this, where you can swap in/out lots of stuff but the basic chemistry of cooking it all in one pot works like a charm. Thanks so much for posting!


Daniel March 28, 2014 at 9:37 pm

Well, this is a very different version of the Paella i used to eat.. (i am spanish), it sound nice so i will try it!


Jenifer April 30, 2014 at 4:05 am

What can substitute smoked paprika? It can be fried peppers? To be honest I do not know where I can get it


J @ by Jet East October 6, 2014 at 10:12 am

YUM. Made this this past weekend and it was AMAZING. I had to alter it a bit since we live in Amsterdam and I couldn’t find chorizo (the Dutch are terrified of anything remote spicey) but it was a great success! Definitely adding this to my short list of favorite recipes- thanks!


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