Recipe courtesy of Kardea Brown

Chicken Perloo

This is an iconic and versatile one-pot Gullah dish starring chicken and rice. You may also see it spelled purloo, perlo or perlou (or sometimes called chicken bog). I prefer chicken thighs for a more intense flavor. I use smoked sausage to add a subtle smokiness to the dish. Dry sherry has a nutty profile and it also enhances the overall flavor of this dish.
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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 55 min
  • Active: 40 min
  • Yield: 6 servings
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5 slices thick-cut bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

1 pound skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs

2 teaspoons House Seasoning, plus more if desired, recipe follows

8 ounces smoked sausage, such as kielbasa or andouille, cut into half moons

1 stalk celery, diced

1 medium Vidalia onion, diced

1 green bell pepper, diced

4 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 cup dry sherry

3 cups diced ripe tomatoes (beefsteak or heirloom if ripe, plum if not)

2 cups uncooked long-grain white rice, such as Carolina Gold Rice

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

5 cups chicken stock

1/4 cup chopped fresh curly-leaf parsley, for serving

House Seasoning:

1 teaspoon onion powder

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 teaspoon sweet paprika

1 teaspoon garlic powder


  1. Heat a large heavy-bottomed skillet or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the bacon and cook, stirring occasionally, until the bacon is crisp and the fat is rendered, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon to a paper towel-lined plate, leaving the rendered fat in the pan.
  2. Sprinkle both sides of the chicken with the House Seasoning. Increase the heat to medium-high and add the chicken thighs, skin-side down, and the sausage to the skillet. Sear the chicken on one side, stirring and flipping the sausage occasionally, until the chicken is deep golden brown, 4 to 5 minutes. Flip and cook for another 3 to 4 minutes on the other side. Remove the chicken and sausage to the plate with the bacon.
  3. Add the celery, onions and peppers to the remaining bacon and chicken fat. Cook until the vegetables are softened and starting to brown, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Pour in the sherry and use a wooden spoon to scrape the browned bits from the bottom. Stir in the tomatoes and let cook until they release all their juices, 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in the rice and butter and cook for about 1 minute. Stir the cooked bacon and sausage back into the skillet. Stir in the chicken stock and check for seasoning. Nestle the chicken thighs, skin-side up, back into the pan, adding any juices from the plate.
  4. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and cover. Simmer until all the liquid is absorbed and the rice is fully cooked, 20 to 30 minutes. Fluff the rice and sprinkle with parsley if desired. Serve immediately. 

House Seasoning:

  1. Stir everything together in a medium bowl. Keep in an airtight container. Makes 5 teaspoons.
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