Traditional paella is made with rice. This recipe replaces the rice with quinoa, which is very good at absorbing the flavor of whatever it cooks in. This recipe simplifies cooking paella by foregoing the paella pan and using a common baking pan, the perfect size for parties and potlucks. Garnish with lemon wedges.


Recipe Summary

25 mins
1 hr 10 mins
1 hr 35 mins
1 9x13-inch paella


Original recipe yields 10 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).

  • Bring chicken stock and bay leaves to a boil in a large saucepan. Reduce heat and simmer while preparing the other ingredients. Taste stock; it should taste a little over-salted. Season with 1 to 2 teaspoons salt and 1 teaspoon black pepper as needed.

  • Season chicken with salt and pepper.

  • Squeeze out seeds from each tomato half over a sieve and into a bowl. Reserve the juice and discard the seeds. Grate the cut sides of the tomatoes over a bowl through the large holes of a box grater. Discard the skin. Combine the tomato juice and the grated pulp.

  • Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat for 2 to 3 minutes and coat with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Add chicken in batches, in a single layer with space between pieces. Saute until meat is mostly opaque, about 4 minutes; it will continue cooking in the oven. Place chicken in a 9x13-inch baking pan. Repeat with the remaining chicken, being careful not to burn the fats rendering in the skillet.

  • Add 2 tablespoons olive oil to the same skillet. Add the tomato juice-pulp mixture. Cook, scraping up browned bits from the bottom of skillet, until juices are mostly evaporated, about 5 minutes. Add 2 teaspoons salt, 1 teaspoon black pepper, and paprika. Mix well. Add onions and garlic; saute until is fragrant, about 3 minutes. Stir the mixture, called a sofrito, into the baking pan with the chicken.

  • Heat the last tablespoon of olive oil in the hot skillet. Add green beans and saute for 1 minute. Add bell peppers; saute until green beans are crisp-tender, about 2 minutes more. Transfer mixture to the baking pan and stir well; mix in quinoa and saffron.

  • Remove and discard bay leaves from stock and bring to a boil. Pour 1/2 into the baking pan. Mix carefully until well combined. Add remaining stock and stir carefully. Lay rosemary sprigs on top.

  • Bake in the preheated oven until quinoa is tender yet firm to the bite, 35 to 45 minutes.

Cook's Notes:

You can use any combination of dark and white chicken meat.

Replace the fresh tomatoes with 1 cup canned diced tomatoes, if desired. Skip Step 4 if using.

Yes, you have to count the saffron threads.

Nutrition Facts

350 calories; protein 23.2g; carbohydrates 40.5g; fat 10.8g; cholesterol 39.2mg; sodium 1030.2mg. Full Nutrition