Lemon & Garlic Tahini Chicken & Rice

4.97 from 26 votes
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You know when you have some random ingredients kicking around your kitchen and you keep thinking to yourself: “I need to make something using that”. Well, thats exactly how my Lemon & Garlic Tahini Chicken & Rice was born.

Reasons why you’ll love this recipe

Made all in one pan: Yes, one pan! This recipe could not be any easier and the best part about it is you only need to use and clean up one big pan!
Ready in under one hour: I love making this recipe because it comes together in under an hour and the majority of that hour its in the oven cooking. The prep time for this recipe is no more than 20 minutes if you choose not to marinate the chicken overnight.
Filling & satisfying: I love how this dish has everything you can need all in one pan! It’s filling and satisfying and everyone in the family loves it.
The leftovers taste great: I love a one-pan dinner that serves for the lunch the next day, and these leftovers taste fantastic which is ALWAYS a win-win here!
Goes great with any veg: If you love a veggie on the side feel free to add any along side the chicken here. A few I would recommend would be: green beans, broccoli or zucchini.
Very customizable: This recipe is super customizable so if you want less garlic, more lemon, or certain spices, feel free to add what you like here, you really can’t screw this one up!


Here is a quick overview of the ingredients you’ll need to make my One-Pan Lemon & Garlic Tahini Chicken & Rice. For the exact detailed measurements and ingredients, scroll to the bottom of this page to review my recipe card.

  • Chicken thighs: bone in and skin on. You can sub for boneless skinless thighs as well but my suggestion is to use thighs if possible. I find the breasts become too dry.
  • Lemons: I love using fresh lemon juice in this recipe so that would be ideal, but if you only have store-bought you can still use it but I would reduce the amount by half.
  • Lemon zest: this will add a nice citrus/fresh flavour to the chicken.
  • Honey: you can use agave if you don’t use honey, but I would reduce the quantity by half since it tends to be really sweet.
  • Garlic: lots of garlic is KEY in this recipe so you need to use at LEAST 7 cloves here!
  • Lemon & pepper seasoning: I use the Clubhouse lemon & pepper seasoning in this recipe and it tastes so good! If you find a different lemon & pepper seasoning that should work perfectly fine! Now, if you can’t find this seasoning, don’t worry, just add a bit of extra lemon zest and an extra 1/4 tsp of fresh cracked pepper.
  • Rice: you can use orzo instead if thats more your style!
  • Lots of spices that I will list below in my recipe card.

Tips before getting started

If possible, marinade the chicken overnight! This will give you the most flavourful chicken hands down. HOWEVER, I realize most of the time people aren’t planning ahead and thats totally fine! This one still tastes fantastic even if you don’t marinade the chicken, so still go for it! I also prefer to use bone in, skin on chicken thighs in this recipe over the breasts. The breasts cook too quickly and become a little too dry for my liking, but hey, if you don’t mind it and would rather just do it all in one pan I say go for it. The thighs are more fatty so they take a little longer to cook which allows the rice and chicken to be ready at the same time, which works awesome!

BROWN THE CHICKEN! I always recommend giving the thighs a quick fry for 1-2 minutes on each side before popping them into the oven. It’s going to amp up the flavour of the chicken and it will give the chicken a delicious crispy texture on the outside.

You can use a veggie stock in replace of the chicken stock if thats your preference! Just be sure you have enough stock that just covers the rice entirely but not the chicken.

Substitutions & FAQ’s

Do I need to marinade the chicken overnight? Nope! BUT, it tastes SO much better if you do! But hey, if you are pressed for time, or are too lazy to do it the night before, it still tastes fantastic, so still go for it.
What do I do if the cook time is up but there is still broth/stock in the pan?
Just keep cooking it! Every oven and pan size will differ slightly so don’t panic! This dish may take up to 50 minutes to cook.
Do I need to fry the chicken first or can I just add it to the pan with the rice?

You can just add the thighs to the pan if you want (without frying them first), although frying the chicken adds so much flavour and delicious texture I wouldn’t personally skip this step!
Can I use orzo or quinoa in this recipe instead of rice?

Sure can!
How do I know if my chicken is cooked?

Once it reaches 165 degrees its safe to eat.
If I don’t like tahini would this dish still taste good? YES! this dish still has loads of flavour, I would just squeeze on some extra lemon juice before serving to really bring out the flavours.
What would taste good as a side dish along side this recipe? Some of my personal favs are: green beans, broccoli or zucchini.
Can I use store-bought lemon juice instead of fresh? I prefer the fresh lemon juice in this one, but if you only have store-bough you can! Just reduce the quantity to half.

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4.97 from 26 votes

Lemon & Garlic Tahini Chicken & Rice

This is my One-Pan Lemon & Garlic Tahini Chicken & Rice and it's one of the easiest dishes to whip up! If you love garlic and lemon, this might be your new favourite recipe! It's packed with tons of garlic, lemon juice and zest, then covered in my lemon tahini dressing which makes this one so creamy and flavourful. I hope you love it as much as we all do!
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes
Servings: 4


Chicken Marinade:

  • 6 chicken thighs, bone in, skin on
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1 tbsp lemon zest
  • 7 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 1 tsp lemon pepper seasioning

Lemon Tahini Dressing:

  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 3-4 tbsp warm water, to thin
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp maple syrup
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 1/4 tsp salt, more if needed

Other Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil, for frying the chicken thighs
  • 3 cups chicken stock, or vegetable
  • 1/2 yellow onion, chopped fine
  • 4 lemon peels
  • cup jasmine rice
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes


  • Set your oven to 400 °F before getting started.
  • Begin by mixing your chicken marinade ingredients in a small bowl. Pour over the chicken and mix well, smothering it all over.
    *Refrigerate overnight if possible, but if not, let marinate for at least 20 minutes.
  • To a large oven safe frying pan, add your olive oil to pan fry the chicken. Fry on medium heat for 1-2 minutes per side. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside.
  • To the same pan, set to medium heat, add your onion, oregano, chilli flakes and lemon peels. Saute for 4-5 minutes, just until the onion begins to soften.
  • Add your rice and let "toast" for 1-2 minutes, scrapping all the bits from the bottom.
  • Turn off the heat, add your chicken stock and return your chicken thighs back into the pan.
  • Cover and bake in the oven for 40-55 minutes, or until rice has been cooked and chicken is done.
  • While your chicken is cooking, prepare your lemon tahini sauce if using.
    *Feel free to double the sauce recipe if you like a lot of sauce!
  • Once the chicken and rice are cooked remove the pan from the oven, cover with the lemon tahini sauce and enjoy right away!

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4

About Sammy Montgoms

I am so glad you are here. I am a BIG foodie gal. I am one of those people who lives to eat, rather than eats to live. I love to create nostalgic Italian dishes (especially pasta), but I also love to whip up simple and quick recipes for my family. Hopefully, my page inspires you to do the same. Thank you for being here, and happy eating!

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Recipe Rating


    1. 5 stars
      Delish! I made it for my husband and three boys, as well as my parents, and everyone gobbled it up. Thanks for the great recipe!

  1. 5 stars
    So good! I only had calrose rice so I used that and I threw in some veggies. Turned out great. Lemon, garlic, creamy tahini goodness!

    1. Hey Jessica! OHHH that sounds good. And I love how you customized it. Thanks for the review, it means so much to me.

  2. 5 stars
    Delicious!! May have gotten a bit carried away with my garlic in the tahini sauce (is there such thing? Haha) But fantastic, and great leftovers!

  3. I’m making this for dinner tonight, im excited to try one of your recipes for the first time! I was wondering, can I use this in a slow cooker?

    1. Hey Jayy! I haven’t done it in the slow cooker so I can’t say for sure! If you try it in there can you please let me know if it turned out? All the best,

  4. 5 stars
    Omg! I made this for dinner tonight and subbed in b/s chicken breasts and it’s so DELICIOUS! The garlic tahini finishing sauce is fantastic! 🤤♥️

    1. Hi Helena, thanks so much for taking the time to leave a review that is so sweet of you. I am soooo happy you loved it!

  5. 5 stars
    Delicious! Everyone at my table liked this – toddler, college student, husband and Grandma! A crowd pleaser that also seems modern. The one thing I would add to the recipe is to pat the chicken dry before browning it in the oil to get the most efficient sear. I should have known to do this, but it’s kind of a pain to do, so need a little push from the recipe!

  6. I’m making this now! Everything smells great. Will report back. My sauce is pretty thick and chunky, did I do something wrong? Almost a curdled vibe, but tastes great!

    1. Hi Elizabeth! It’s likely just your sesame paste. Most of the time I use an immersion blender for the sauce just because it really does take a bit to make it a smooth consistency, so maybe try that next time!

  7. 5 stars
    Delicious! Will definitely make again. Served it with garlic sautéed kale which was made even better with the tahini sauce. Thank you!!

  8. 5 stars
    My husbands new favorite dinner! This is so delicious. One thing I am changing for next time is to make the tahini sauce the day before. I think it tasted better when we ate the leftovers the next day. Can’t wait to try your other recipes.

    1. Hi Carol! Thanks for sharing this comment with me 🙂 I am so glad you and your husband loved it. Tahini dressing def tastes good the next day. I always make a big salad dressing using tahini and love it more the next day as well. Let me know what else you end up trying! 🙂

  9. 5 stars
    I was a little skeptical, but can confirm, this is a winner! I had some leftover frozen peas in my freezer that I added before popping in the oven and it turned out to be a great addition!

  10. 5 stars
    I made this to ight. It was so good! I prepped the chicken first thing in the morning and let it marinate until evening.

    I made the dressing, it was good on its own but it was extremely thick. I added 6 tbsp of water but still very thick. It didn’t seem to work with the rest of the dish. I wonder what went wrong here.

    I’ll definitely make the chicken and rice again! Thanks! 🙂

  11. 5 stars
    Greatings from Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Very tasty and easy to make dish! family loved it. Pretty sure that it will become one our regular go to dish

    1. Hi Paulo!! Thanks so much for taking the time to leave me a review. It means so much to me! I am also so happy the family loved it. Have an awesome day!

  12. 5 stars
    This was a delicious, flavorful and very approachable recipe. The only change I made was using boneless, skinless thighs. My whole family gobbled this up. I can’t wait to remake this. It will be at the top of my list to make when entertaining.

  13. 4 stars
    This recipe was delicious but kind of a lot of work! Yes it cooks in one pot, but it would probably have been faster to just make the rice separately in an instant pot or rice cooker instead of baking it. I had to take the chicken out before the rice was done because it was fully cooked. The recipe included 2 different sauces, so lots of clean up for a “one pot” meal.

  14. 5 stars
    This recipe is so simple yet so delicious. The sauce is what makes it! The sauce would be so great as a dressing over an arugula salad. Or any salad for that matter. This is now on my weekly rotation. Well done!

  15. 5 stars
    I just made this recipe for dinner/ lunch leftovers during week and it is delicious and moist! Used boneless skinless thighs instead, the chicken was so moist. This is a meal that you look forward to eating during the week instead of a boring lunch. I love the dressing too! I shook it up in a jar so I could use leftover dressing for other meals during the week. Love all your recipes thank you 😊

  16. 5 stars
    Oh this was STUNNING! It’s your first recipe I’ve tried and it was a hit. So so delicious, and even my 6 year old claimed it was the best! So many nice cozy flavours. Thank you for this one!

  17. 5 stars
    this is one of my favorite things I’ve ever made, I hate cooking but it’s so easy and it freezes SO WELL. 10/10 sent it to multiple friends

  18. 5 stars
    My boyfriend picked up chicken breast instead of thighs. So I had to cook it a different way. Turned out amazing still. Definitely takes longer than 20-30 minutes but it’s worth it. Thanks girl

  19. 5 stars
    Absolutely delicious! This is in constant rotation in our house. The only tweak I make is to leave out the lemon peels- find it gives a bit of an “off” flavor. Otherwise, perfection!

  20. 5 stars
    The sauce recipe doesn’t make sense when you’re putting it together BUT dang it, it is good and honestly enhances the dish 1000%! I have made this countless times, told friends about it and it has become a staple in our house!

    1. Hi Jessica! I hear ya, lol! Although, I am happy you like it as much as we all do! Thanks for this wonderful comment.