Pollo Pibil (Chicken Pibil)

Have you heard of Cochinita Pibil? It is a dish from Yucatán, Mexico made with pork, achiote a mix of annatto seeds, spices, bitter orange and other ingredients, it is a delicious recipe that you have to try to make because you will wow your family, it is call cochinita because it is make with pork, but you can use achiote to cook other lovely recipes, like this recipe made with chicken.

I bought an organic chicken at my local butcher because I believe in good and conscious farming and also I think the flavour is better. The recipe has the same ingredients as the pork pibil, but it takes less time.

Serves 4
Prep 15 min plus 2 hrs marinate or over night

  • 1 whole organic chicken 1.5 kg
  • 3 tbsp achiote paste
  • Juice of 3 mandarins
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 small white onion julienne
  • 2 garlic cloves finely chopped
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Pinch oregano
  • 1 cup water

To garnish


  1. In a blender put the achiote paste, Orange juice, lemon and oregano to blend until the achiote has dissolve.
  2. Put the whole chicken inside a casserole dish (Dutch oven), add the garlic, onion, salt and pepper and the achiote mix and leave to marinate for at least 2 hours.
  3. Preheat the oven 15 min to 180 degrees C. Add the cup of water to the chicken, put the lid on and place in the oven.
  4. Cook for an hour and a half.
  1. How to make red pickled onion
    Cut a red onion in julienne, wash through with cold water, put it in a bowl, add some salt, leave it for 10 min.
  2. Wash it again and add the juice of a lime, a pinch of oregano and salt.
  3. Leave it to pickled for 10 more min and done.
  1. Have the chicken pibil in tacos with some warm tortillas, pickled onion, salsa and guacamole.



Published by

Karla Zazueta

Mexican living in London

2 thoughts on “Pollo Pibil (Chicken Pibil)

  1. Karla,I am a displaced Southern Cal guy. How do I get that Ensenada taste in my food? Why does Ensenada food taste different than Tex-Mex food?

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