Khmeli Suneli Chicken With Saffron Rice

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Khmeli Suneli chicken on saffron rice

Khmeli Suneli is a Georgian spice mixture that is extremely tasty. The name actually translates directly to “dried spices” as that is entirely what it is comprised of. I saw a packet at the market and thought I should probably make something with it as I do love Georgian food. Thus, I decided to make the Khmeli Suneli chicken with saffron rice. You can pair this dish with some homemade Georgian bread.

marinading the chicken with the khmeli suneli seasoning

Other than the seasoning mixture there really isn’t anything about this recipe that is authentically Georgian. So, I don’t want to pass this off as a Georgian dish. It is simply something that I thought of making and it came out well enough for me to put the recipe up on the site. If you can’t find Khmeli Suneli seasoning at your local market you can order it on Amazon here, just note that the prices are kind of high, so it makes the dish a bit more expensive than it really should be.

Frying the khmeli suneli chicken

Speaking of expensive, this recipe also calls for saffron. You may know saffron as the most expensive thing per weight in the world, but you really don’t need that much. I used about 10 strands for the cup of rice, but I probably only needed to use half that.

making saffron rice in a pan
If the rice doesn’t cook by the time the water runs out, it’s okay to add more water at 1/4 cup intervals until the rice is all cooked.

The rice in this instant is not made in a rice cooker, or even a pot. Instead it is made in a simple saute pan the old fashioned way. You do stir the rice as it cooks, not as much as risotto, but more than paella which shouldn’t be touched at all. This makes the rice a little creamier, and because of the saffron fried in oil mixed in this rice dish to pair with the Khmeli Suneli chicken, an extremely rich flavorful dish.

Khmeli Suneli Chicken on Saffron Rice in a paella dish
Khmeli Suneli seasoning on chicken with a saffron rice plate recipe

Khmeli Suneli Chicken With Saffron Rice

A Georgian inspired dish packed with so much flavor. Perfect for large groups because it can easily scale
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Course Main Course, Main Dish
Cuisine Fusion, Georgian
Servings 2 people


  • Pan


  • 2 Chicken Breasts cubed into bite size pieces
  • 100 grams Khmeli Suneli A Georgian spice blend
  • 1 cup Rice I used Arborio, but you can use whatever you want
  • 2 tbsp Olive Oil plus 1-2 tbsp more for frying the chicken
  • 1 pinch Saffron I used 10 strands, but you can get away with less


  • In a bowl add the chicken breast pieces and the khmeli suneli seasoning and give everything a good mix. You should be very liberal with the seasoning as that is where all the flavors are coming from.
  • In a saute pan add the olive oil and bring it up to a high heat. Add the saffron and let it fry and sputter and then add the rice. Fry the rice for about 10-15 seconds giving the pan a good shake and then add 1.5 cups of water. Be careful because there is oil in there. Use a wooden spoon to give everything a good stir. Let it boil and then turn the heat down to a simmer. No need to cover the pan, you want the water to evaporate as its cooking. Stir the rice every 4-5 minutes until it is done (25-30 minutes).
  • In another pan add a healthy amount of olive oil of olive oil on medium high heat and then add the chicken pieces. Fry the chicken until it is well browned.
  • When the rice is done put it in a dish and pour the chicken and all the flavored oil over the rice.


The chicken will hold for up to a week in the fridge, but the rice needs to be completely sealed. 
Keyword Chicken, Khmeli Suneli, Saffron Rice

Khmeli Suneli Chicken With Saffron Rice

Like Georgian Food? Try An Authentic Chakhokhbili, A Georgian Chicken Stew!

authentic Georgian Chakhokhbili

1 Comment

  1. […] is the same seasoning blend I used for my recipe for Khmeli Suneli Chicken With Saffron Rice. I did pound the chicken thin with the meat tenderizer, but you don’t need to do that. I just did […]

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