A bowl of Ukrainian chicken plov, rice pilaf, with a green cloth napkin and fork beside the bowl

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My Mama gave me this chicken plov  (rice pilaf) recipe over the phone. I changed it up just a little with a touch of Cayenne pepper. Traditional plov is  made with lamb pork or beef. This is our own speedy version.

Rice Cooker: Where have you been all these years? My hubby bought me a rice cooker for Mothers Day and I’ve already made this chicken plov several times. (p.s. It’s a great buy at Costco ~$30) It was so easy and fast. I don’t have to stand over it; I just put my prepped ingredients in the rice cooker and press the button. Voila!!

Ingredients for Chicken Plov:

1 large chicken breast, cut into 1/2-inch x 1-inch pieces
2 cups white rice, rinsed well and drained
1 large carrot, grated
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 Tbsp butter
1/4 cup ketchup
2 1/2 cups water or low sodium chicken broth*
1 tsp salt
1/8 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/8 tsp Cayenne pepper

*Use as much water/broth as your rice maker requires. note: If cooking on stove top, add 2 cups water for every 1 cup rice.

Rice Pilaf

How to make Plov (Rice Pilaf):

1. Heat 2 Tbsp olive oil in a large skillet over medium/high heat. Add chicken pieces, than saute until golden and cooked through.

Rice Pilaf-2

2. Next, add 1 diced  onion to the skillet with chicken and saute about 3 minutes.

Rice Pilaf-4

3. Add grated carrots to the skillet and saute 2 more minutes.

Rice Pilaf-5

4. Add 2 Tbsp of butter and 1/4 cup ketchup and mix everything together.

Rice Pilaf-6

Rice Pilaf-7

5. Once the butter melts, add 2 cups of rinsed rice to the skillet. Sprinkle with 1 tsp of  salt, 1/8 tsp of black pepper, 1/8 tsp of Cayenne pepper and mix everything together.

Rice Pilaf-8

Rice Pilaf-9

6. Transfer mixture to the rice cooker, add 2 1/2 cups of water and season more to taste if desired. Set the rice cooker to “White rice”.

– OR – If you don’t have a rice cooker, you can put everything into a pot with a tight-fitting lid and cook over medium/low heat for about 20 minutes, or until all of the water is absorbed

Rice Pilaf-10

Rice Pilaf-11

Notes: If you don’t rinse your rice, you will require more water. Left over plov is always a good thing; just saute it up. I think its even better reheated in a frying pan. It gives it a certain crunch.

Natasha's Kitchen Cookbook

Ukrainian Chicken Plov (Rice Pilaf)

4.95 from 55 votes
Author: Natasha of NatashasKitchen.com
A bowl of Ukrainian chicken plov, rice pilaf, with a green cloth napkin and fork beside the bowl
Chicken Pilaf (plov) is hearty and so satisfying.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes

Ingredients 

Servings: 6
  • 1 large chicken breast, cut into 1/2-inch x 1-inch pieces
  • 2 cups white rice, rinsed well and drained
  • 1 large carrot, grated
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 2 1/2 cups water or low sodium chicken broth
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/8 tsp Cayenne pepper

Instructions

  • Heat 2 Tbsp of olive oil in a large skillet over medium/high heat. Add chicken pieces, saute them until golden and cooked through.
  • Next, add 1 diced onion to the skillet with chicken and saute about 3 minutes.
  • Add grated carrots to the skillet and saute 2 more minutes.
  • Add 2 Tbsp of butter and 1/4 cup ketchup and mix everything together.
  • Once the butter melts, add 2 cups of rinsed rice to the skillet. Sprinkle with 1 tsp of salt, 1/8 tsp of black pepper, 1/8 tsp of Cayenne pepper and mix everything together.
  • Transfer mixture to the rice cooker, add 2 1/2 cups of water and season more to taste if desired. Set the rice cooker to "White rice". - OR - If you don't have a rice cooker, you can put everything into a pot with a tight-fitting lid and cook over medium/low heat for about 20 minutes, or until all of the water is absorbed.

Notes

If you don't rinse your rice, you will require more water. Left over plov is always a good thing; just saute it up. I think its even better reheated in a frying pan. It gives it a certain crunch. I recommend to use Jasmine rice.
Course: Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine: Russian, Ukrainian
Keyword: chicken pilaf
Skill Level: Easy
Cost to Make: $

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Natasha Kravchuk

Welcome to my kitchen! I am Natasha, the blogger behind Natasha's Kitchen (since 2009). My husband and I run this blog together and share only our best, family approved and tested recipes with YOU. Thanks for stopping by! We are so happy you're here.

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Recipe Rating




Comments

  • David Jones
    December 20, 2017

    Hey Natasha, What would you think about substituting half of the shredded carrots with parsnips when you make chicken plov?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      December 21, 2017

      David, I haven’t tried using parsnips but they should work. Parsnips will make plov more creamy. Let me know how it turns out 😬

      Reply

  • Rachel
    November 26, 2017

    My family and I love this recipe! We’ve done it this way, and then we added about 2 cups of riced broccoli to give it some green and doubled the chicken, and it was amazing! Also, because the broccoli was riced, you don’t really notice it, so it’s good for picky eaters 🙂

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      November 27, 2017

      I’m happy to hear the recipe is such a success! Thanks for sharing your fantastic review Rachel!

      Reply

  • Julia
    November 22, 2017

    Hi! I want to make a plov with lamb! I just bought lamb and very excited 🙂 Can you share a Lamb Plov recipe? Or maybe suggest how to adjust the current recipe?

    Thank you 🙂

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      November 22, 2017

      Hi Julia, I don’t have a lamb plov recipe yet but if I come up with something great, I will be sure to share it! 🙂 It will probably be similar to the process of my beef plov.

      Reply

  • Viktoriya M
    August 4, 2017

    What price do you buy?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      August 4, 2017

      Hi Viktoriya, what are you referring to?

      Reply

  • Katerina
    July 5, 2017

    I don’t like ketchup, I was wandering if I can use tomato paste instead?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      July 5, 2017

      Hi Katerina, I really do think ketchup gives the best flavor but you can make it work with tomato paste instead.

      Reply

  • Zack G
    May 3, 2017

    I am so glad I found your website after I returned to the U.S. from living in Ukraine for two years. I love seeing the traditional Ukrainian foods I ate during that time. It makes me so excited to have the cuisine and taste I miss so much. Keep being awesome!

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      May 3, 2017

      Aww, you’re so sweet Zack! Thank you for following and please let me know what you think of the recipe!

      Reply

      • Zack
        May 3, 2017

        It is wonderful! It turned out exactly like I was hoping. It reminded me exactly of what I ate so many times in Ukraine. I can’t wait to make it again and again.

        Reply

        • Natasha's Kitchen
          May 3, 2017

          That’s great to hear Zack! Thanks for sharing your wonderful review! 😀

          Reply

  • Mel
    March 21, 2017

    Hello! This looks so yummy! I’m wondering how you think this would be without the chicken? Do you think it would still be good?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      March 22, 2017

      Hi Mel, I think that would work but I would suggest using low sodium chicken broth (or veggie broth if vegetarian) to add more flavor. You may need to add just slightly less salt to account for the salt in the chicken broth.

      Reply

  • Anna Timoshchuk
    March 19, 2017

    Hi Natasha,
    Could I use chicken thighs instead of the breasts? Or does that change the taste of the plov?
    Thank you!

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      March 19, 2017

      Hi Anna, I think boneless, skinless chicken thighs would work even better. I love the dark meat – it’s more flavorful and tender 🙂

      Reply

      • Anna Timoshchuk
        March 19, 2017

        Thank you! I am looking forward to making this. I have made the beef plov and it was amazing. I’m a new wife and don’t know what I would do without your blog, everything is scrumptious 🙂

        Reply

        • Natasha's Kitchen
          March 20, 2017

          My pleasure! Let me know what you think!

          Reply

  • Yana
    March 16, 2017

    Thank you so much for this recipe! My husband keeps requesting it over and over again. He claims its the best plov he’s eaten😂
    Being a young Ukrainian wife who’s grown up in America it’s so nice to be able to make these russian/ukrainian dishes thanks to you! Love the easy to follow instructions. Thanks again for all the hard work you put into this website!😘

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      March 16, 2017

      You’re welcome Yana! I’m happy to hear you both love the recipe! Thank you for the great compliments!! 😀

      Reply

  • Natasha
    November 27, 2016

    Hi Natasha. My sister-in-law raves about this recipe. I really want to make it, but with beef. Do you know if I need to change cooking time if it’ll be with beef or what would you suggest for me to do differently to make this recipe with beef?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      November 28, 2016

      Hi there :). If you are interested in making a beef plov, you can see my prep for beef in this beef plov recipe, or you might also like this beef pilaf with buckwheat if you are a buckwheat fan 🙂

      Reply

      • Natasha
        November 30, 2016

        Natasha, I always make beef plov by your recipe and it is always delicious.🤗 I was asking if I substitute beef for chicken and still use this recipe and rice cooker, do I need to adjust the cooking time for darker meat. I just want to try using a rice cooker…

        Reply

        • Natasha
          natashaskitchen
          November 30, 2016

          Hi There, I’m so glad you enjoy the recipe!! Beef needs to be cooked a little longer for it to be tender. I haven’t tried this exact method substituting beef in the rice cooker, but I assume the beef would be tough. When I make beef plov, I always cook it awhile before adding the rice. Check out my recipe here for beef plov with rice and here for beef plov with buckwheat.

          Reply

  • Tzivia
    May 22, 2016

    Mmmmm chicken and rice my favorite dish Natasha would this work with leftover chicken yo my mouth is totally watering and soooooo drooling always looking for new ways to mix up chicken and rice

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      May 22, 2016

      Yes this does work for leftovers. I love it best reheated on a skillet to make the rice a little crispy 🙂

      Reply

      • Tzivia
        May 23, 2016

        Mmmmm wow cool awesome maybe for tomorrow nights dinner thanx soooooo much @ usual Natasha have a gr8 blessed day and super cool week ahead darlin cheers

        Reply

  • Julia
    May 16, 2016

    Hi Natasha!
    Thank you for your recipe! I was wondering how can you not make rice burn to the pot everytime I do it this happens! And I cook it on low heat! And I also substituted tomato sauce for ketchup it turned out great except the bottom of the pan got burned rice:(

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      May 17, 2016

      Hi Julia, I recommend turning down the heat. You should just barely hear a sizzle in the pot. Also, what kind of pot are you using? It’s best to make plov in either a dutch oven or a pot with a heavy bottom for even heat distribution otherwise you can get scorched rice at the bottom. I sure hope that helps for next time! 🙂

      Reply

  • Monica
    March 6, 2016

    Made this today. I did not have olive oil or basmati rice, but substituted coconut oil and brown rice. It was delicious. Will make it with basmati when I make it again. I give it 5 stars.

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      March 6, 2016

      Monica, thank you for sharing your wonderful review and it’s nice to hear that it tasted great with the ingredients you had on hand 😀.

      Reply

  • Evgenia
    February 12, 2016

    Hi there! I’m also a russophone recently moved to the US and looove your blog! I just noticed a small mistake, it’s not cheyenne pepper, but Cayenne. I love this dish my mom used to make it a lot back in Russia! Thank you for sharing 🙂

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      February 12, 2016

      Thank you so much for letting me know about that error. I always appreciate it! Fixed :). I’m so happy you enjoy the blog 🙂

      Reply

  • Emilee
    January 29, 2016

    The first time I made this it turned out perfectly. My boyfriend is from Ukraine and he said it was how its supposed to be. I had high hopes the second time but unfortunately I don’t know what I did wrong it was awful, the rice was so sticky. One thing I think I did wrong was put way too much water in it but that is because at first the rice was hard so I added a lot more water thinking it would cook the rice, it cooked it but it made it so sticky. How do you make the rice not sticky?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      January 29, 2016

      Hi Emilee, did you use a different kind of rice by chance the second time around? To reduce stickiness of rice, I rinse it. Rinsing removes the starch that makes it stick.

      Reply

      • Emilee
        January 29, 2016

        I may have used a different rice I can’t remember. But I did rinse it a lot so I was surprised it turned out so sticky. When you add everything together do you bring to a boil then simmer? maybe that’s what I did wrong.

        Reply

        • Natasha
          natashaskitchen
          January 29, 2016

          Maybe that could possibly be it. I do not boil it before putting it in the rice maker and when I cook it on the stove, I bring it to a light boil then reduce to a simmer.

          Reply

  • Laura
    January 25, 2016

    Love this recipe! If I want to use brown rice instead of white and still finish it in the rice cooker, how much water do I add?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      January 26, 2016

      Laura, I would add another 1/2 cup of water and remember it cooks considerably longer. Let me know how you like it 😀.

      Reply

  • Irina
    January 23, 2016

    Made this tonight- delicious!! My husband loved it too and he can be picky with Russian food. Thank you

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      January 24, 2016

      Thank you for the nice review Irina and you are welcome 😃.

      Reply

  • Marina
    January 15, 2016

    Hello Natasha, thank you so much for all your beautiful recipes and photos. I love browsing through your site!

    I made this tonight and the chicken was a little dry. I do not have a rice cooker, so i just left everything in my large non stick pan to cook ( so easy !). I did not transfer it into another pot like you say. The rice got a little browned/ burned on the bottom, but i actually liked it, just like Joel commented above 🙂 I also garnished the plov with sliced tomatoes and cilantro and it was delicious, and helped to cut down on dryness of the chicken. For seasoning, i used a packet of plov seasoning from the russian market (Magia Vostoka), if you haven’t tried it, it is excellent. And i used 2 breasts, not one.

    So my question is, what can i do to prevent the chicken from drying out? Transfer to a pot and not leave in the frying pan? Marinate the chicken before cooking?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      January 16, 2016

      I’m thinking the reason why the chicken was probably dry was due to using a pan rather than a pot. A pan will have more surface area so there is more steam that will evaporate faster rather than in a pot. You might also lower the heat and that will probably help. If the rice was browned, it was probably a little too high of heat. I hope that helps. Thanks for sharing about the seasoning. I haven’t tried it. Do you know if it has MSG in it (monosodium glutamate)? Thanks again! 🙂

      Reply

      • Marina
        January 16, 2016

        Magia Vostoka brand does not have any MSG. Just wonderful aromatic herbs/ spices ans salt. They make all kinds of seasoning blends.

        I will definitely transfer my plov to a pot next time to reduce the surface area evaporation. Thanks for the lesson in physics 🙂

        Reply

        • Natasha
          natashaskitchen
          January 16, 2016

          Oh that’s great! Thank you! 🙂

          Reply

  • Mariana
    January 14, 2016

    Hi Natasha, I made this meal for dinner last night, it’s the perfect comfort food for this cold weather, my 2 year old boy loved it!Thank you for your delicious recipes 🙂

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      January 14, 2016

      Mariana, thank you for such a nice review and for giving me the idea what I will be making tomorrow 😁

      Reply

  • Rachel
    December 4, 2015

    So yummy! Would fresh chopped dill go well in this recipe? If so, when should it be added in?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      December 5, 2015

      If you want it to be a noticeable dill flavor, I’d recommend adding it in the last couple minutes of cooking and stirring it in.

      Reply

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