Chicken and Rice Roll Ups

Little chefs learn how to flatten chicken with this recipe and will eat up the final product! Our Chicken and Rice Roll Ups star U.S.-grown white long grain rice and serve 4.

This recipe is part of “The Kids’ Kitchen” series, a collection of approachable recipes that teach children the basics of cooking through the preparation, assembly, and plating of each dish (adults are asked to handle any oven or stovetop instructions).

Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
40 min
Total Time
1 h


  • 1 cup (250 mL) long grain white rice, uncooked
  • 1¾ cups (415 mL) water
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • ¾ teaspoon salt, divided use
  • 4 (6-ounces or 3/4 cup each) boneless skinless chicken breast
  • 1 (½ cup or 125 mL) can chopped mild green chilies
  • 4 Colby and Monterey Jack cheese sticks
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided use
  •   paprika to taste


  1. Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C).
  2. Place the rice, water, cumin, and ½ teaspoon of the salt in a 13-inch by 9-inch baking pan coated with cooking spray. Stir until well blended and set aside.
  3. Working with one breast at a time, place a breast in a gallon-size resealable baggie, smooth side of the breast up. Using the bottom of a soup can or the smooth side of a meat mallet, pound the chicken breast to flatten slightly to about ¼ inch thickness (try not to tear or make holes in the chicken, if possible.) Remove from bag and place, smooth side down, onto a clean work surface or a large cookie sheet. Repeat with remaining chicken breasts.
  4. Spoon chilies evenly on top of the chicken pieces. Place a cheese stick on one end of each piece of chicken and roll up. Carefully place chicken breasts seam side down on top of the rice mixture in a single layer. Brush or drizzle 1 tablespoon of the oil evenly over the chicken and sprinkle with remaining ¼ teaspoon salt and paprika. Sprinkle any excess green chilies that may have fallen out while transferring to the baking pan evenly over all.
  5. Cover tightly and bake 40 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink and reaches 180°F (80°C), when inserted with a meat thermometer. Brush remaining 1 Tablespoon oil evenly over chicken pieces.Makes 4 cups (1 L) rice mixture plus 4 chicken rolls total.

Recipe Notes

If 6-ounce chicken breasts are not available, buy two 12-ounce chicken breasts and cut in half crosswise before flattening.

It’s easier to flatten chicken if allowed to stand 15-20 minutes at room temperature first.