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roasted cumin chicken and rice
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5 from 1 vote

Cumin Chicken with Roasted Garlic Chimichurri

There's nothing better than a recipe that can be made nearly entirely in one pan. This Cumin Chicken is deeply savory from the cumin and roasted garlic with a light acidity from the cilantro and lime juice. This dish hits on all your taste buds, and the best part is how easy it is to get from oven to table!
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: baked cumin chicken, cast iron chicken, cast iron chicken thighs, chicken and rice, chimichurri chicken, cooking chicken in a cast iron skillet in the oven, cumin chicken and rice, one pan chicken
Servings: 4 servings


  • Large oven safe pan


For the Chicken

  • 4-6 whole chicken thighs, patted dry with a paper towel
  • 1/4 cup cumin, to taste
  • 1 whole onion, sliced
  • 6-10 whole garlic cloves
  • 2 whole limes, juiced
  • ¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • ½ cup chicken broth

For the Chimichurri

  • ½ cup fresh Italian parsley
  • ¼ cup red wine vinegar
  • 3 whole roasted garlic cloves
  • 1 whole shallot
  • 1 whole red chili pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • ½ cup fresh cilantro
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • ½ tsp black pepper

For the Rice

  • 2 cups cooked rice
  • 1 whole zested and juiced lime
  • ¼ cup cilantro


For the Chicken

  • Preheat oven to 450 and place large cast iron pan or oven safe skillet over medium high heat.
  • Pat dry chicken and liberally season with salt and cumin. Massage into chicken and let rest for at least 10 minutes.
  • Add 2 tbls oil with a high smoke point (like avocado) to the pan. Place chicken skin side down and sear for 5 minutes then flip and sear for another 5 minutes.
  • Nest sliced onion and garlic cloves around the chicken. Add lime juice, cilantro, and chicken broth, being careful not to pour on top of crispy skin. Place into oven for 20-30 minutes, until chicken is cooked and liquid is absorbed.

For the Chimichurri

  • One the chicken is in the oven, add all ingredients for the chimichurri into a food processor and pulse until well blended. Refrigerate.

For the Rice

  • Cook rice per instructions on package. One cooked, mix with remaining ingredients and let cook slightly in the pan until lime juice is absorbed.
  • Serve chicken and onions over rice and top with chimichurri.


I typically use either fresh or roasted garlic for the chimichurri. Fresh can have a sharp bite, so roasted can be used as well. If you can't get roasted garlic at your local grocery store, add a few extra cloves to the chicken. Once the chicken is done remove 3 garlic cloves and pulse in food processor with remaining ingredients. 
This makes a lot of chimichurri! See my recipe for Chimichurri Chicken Wings for the leftovers if you have them. 
If you don't like cilantro, sub for basil and replace the cumin with thyme. Eliminate lime and replace with red wine vinegar where it calls for lime juice.