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Colombian Chicken Stew (Sudado de Pollo)

This quintessential Colombian sudado de pollo is more than just a stew. The star of the dish, chicken (pollo), is slowly cooked in water with a mosaic of flavors, including tomatoes, onion (cebolla), garlic, and, in this case, red potatoes, and a colorful spectrum of spices and herbs to create a comforting and homey dish that exudes warmth and richness.

This Colombian chicken stew is the perfect family-friendly meal. It’s incredibly easy to make and can be cooked for many people.

It was DELICIOUS…

Made this last night, but didn’t have time to take a photo. It was DELICIOUS, even my picky 3yr old couldn’t stop eating it 🙌🏼👏🏼
Jenny
Pinterest Review
Sudado de Pollo on a plate

What is Sudado de Pollo?

In Spanish, sudado translates to ‘sweaty’; however, the name doesn’t give this dish the credit it deserves. This Colombian chicken stew embodies the art of slow cooking. And the ingredients simmer and come together, and the flavors are enhanced every step of the way.

There are variations of this dish in different regions of Colombia, but the core recipe is still the same. It’s a slow-cooked, incredibly delicious chicken stew.

The Spices

The spices truly elevate this dish. In this recipe, I included organic cumin, adobo, and sazon.

Traditionally, this recipe is made with cumin without the additional spices, but I love a good blend of quality spices and herbs.

The combination of cumin, adobo, sazon, bay leaves, sauteed onions, tomatoes, and garlic is a match made in heaven.

Spices in a bowl for Sudado de Pollo
Organic cumin, sazon, and adobo for our sudado de pollo recipe

Sudado de Pollo: How to Serve Sudado de Pollo?

It’s customary to place a generous spoonful of the stew over a bed of freshly cooked rice, like jasmine rice, for the perfect combination of flavors.

Pour the stew over cooked rice so that it’s swimming in the brothy goodness of this dish. Then arrange some potatoes around the plate and add fresh cilantro for garnish – perfect presentation!

Each bite is filled with perfectly cooked chicken soaked in a tangy-sweet broth.

Colombian chicken stew with white rice
Colombian chicken stew with white rice

Variations

Make it spicy:

Make it spicy by adding cayenne pepper or hot sauce, and adjust it based on your preferred level of spiciness. For an extra kick, add freshly diced jalapeños.

In Colombia, we add Colombian hot sauce (Aji) that is slightly spicy and tangy and not overbearingly spicy. It’s a refreshing sauce.

Slices of Avocado:

Top the rice and stew with perfectly ripened avocado slices with a pinch of salt and lime juice.

Seafood and Chicken Blend:

Add shrimp, mussels, or clams along with the chicken to make a delicious blend of seafood flavors.

Lemon Chicken Stew:

Load this stew with lemon or lime juice like a Greek lemon chicken soup for a citrusy and tangy version.

Veggie & Chicken Stew:

Add cauliflower, broccoli, or mushrooms to make a delicious veggie and chicken stew.

Experiment on your own for the best version of this dish. Add ingredients that you love to this dish.

FAQs

What is the best cut of chicken for the perfect sudado de pollo?

The ideal chicken cut for sudado de pollo is either thigh, drumstick, or both. These cuts are ideal for stews because the leg of the chicken requires a longer cooking time and has a higher fat content, allowing these cuts to retain moisture.

Can I freeze leftover Colombian chicken stew?

Yes, if you want to store leftovers and save them for longer, you can store them in the freezer. Use an airtight container to store the leftover sudado de pollo in the freezer.

How can I make this sudado de pollo spicy?

You have several options. You can add a pinch of cayenne pepper, red chili pepper flakes, or a fresh spice pepper like fresh red chili pepper or jalapeño.

Can I make this Colombian chicken stew without the skin?

Absolutely, you can remove the skin for this recipe before searing the chicken.

What can I serve with this dish?

Serve this dish with a fresh side of white rice.
A ripe avocado.
Patacones or air fryer plantain chips.

Can I substitute the adobo and sazon with different spices?

Substitute the adobo and sazon mix with cumin, coriander, garlic powder, paprika, oregano, black pepper, onion powder, turmeric, and salt.

Top Tips for the Best Colombian Chicken Stew

Take your time.

Stews cook slowly and carefully come together over low heat to develop flavor layers. The longer the stew cooks, the greater the chance of extracting flavors from every ingredient.

Season at every turn.

Seasoning at every level is incredibly important because a stew is multi-dimensional. From where you sear the chicken to the sauteeing of the onion and tomato mix, there is an opportunity to truly level up the seasoning to create a robust and delicate stew.

Skim the fat.

Before adding the potatoes, skim any excess fat. This is the perfect opportunity to remove the skin if you prefer to serve the chicken without the skin.

Leave the cilantro for last.

Cilantro is a delicate herb, unlike its cousin, culantro, which is used in sofrito, like Puerto Rican Sofrito, which is made to cook over time. Cilantro is ideally added at the end of a hot dish to prevent it from turning brown and overcooking. Cilantro is optional and based on personal preference.


Sudado de Pollo on a plate

Colombian Chicken Stew (Sudado de Pollo)

Olga Muñoz
Incredibly delicious and easy chicken stew.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Course Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine Colombian
Servings 5 people
Calories 584 kcal

Equipment

  • 1 Dutch Oven
  • 1 Chef Knife or Pairing Knife
  • 1 Potato Peeler
  • 1 Cutting Board
  • 1 Large Spoon

Ingredients
  

  • 10 pieces Chicken thighs and drumsticks
  • 2 whole Tomatoes
  • 1 whole Onion
  • 6 cloves Fresh Garlic
  • 1/2 tsp Tomato Paste
  • 3 whole Red Potatoes

Spices and Salt

  • 3 leaves Fresh or Dried Bay Leaves
  • 1/4 tsp Sazon with Salt
  • 1 tsp Salt-free Sazon
  • 1 tsp Cumin Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Adobo
  • 1/8 tsp Sea Salt

Water and Vinegar

  • 6 cups Filtered Water
  • 1/4 cup White Distilled Vinegar

Garnish

  • 1/4 cup Cilantro

Instructions
 

Prep

  • Dice:
    The tomatoes, onion, garlic, and set aside. A rough chop works well.
    Peel:
    Peel the potatoes, slice them, and set them aside in a bowl of cold water and salt to prevent them from browning. These will be added to the stew later.
    Diced Tomatoes on cutting board for Colombian Chicken Stew
  • Set the Dutch oven on medium heat.
    Salt the chicken. Once the Dutch oven is hot, add the avocado oil, and pan-sear the chicken on all sides (roughly 5 minutes on each side).
    Brown on all sides to develop good flavors, and add the bay leaves.
    Once the chicken is golden brown, set aside.
    Seared Chicken for Colombian Chicken Stew
  • Add the diced onions, tomatoes (fresh and tomato paste), and garlic to the dutch oven and stir for 5 minutes.
    Diced Onions on cutting board.
  • Then add the spices to the sauteed garlic, onion, and tomato mix.
    Spices in a bowl for Sudado de Pollo
  • After 15 minutes, or once the onions are slightly translucent and the spices and tomato paste have caramelized, add the chicken back into the pot.
    Sauteed Onion Mix Sudado de Pollo in dutch oven
  • Fill the pot with six cups of filtered water, add the vinegar, and place the cover on for 10 minutes. Continue to cook on medium heat.
    Uncover, then cook for 20-30 minutes until the chicken is fork-tender.
    Tip! Remove any excess fat with a large spoon. If you prefer chicken without the skin, remove the skin before serving.
    Sudado de Pollo in dutch oven
  • Drain the potatoes and add them to the chicken stew. Continue to cook for 15 minutes on medium heat.
    Test the potatoes with a fork. Once they're fork-tender, the stew is ready to serve!
    Season as desired.
    Enjoy on a bed of white rice, slivers of avocado, and fresh cilantro. Add a spoonful of aji picante for an extra kick!

Notes

Top Tips for the Best Colombian Chicken Stew

Take your time.

Stews cook slowly and carefully come together over low heat to develop flavor layers. The longer the stew cooks, the greater the chance of extracting flavors from every ingredient.

Season at every turn.

Seasoning at every level is incredibly important because a stew is multi-dimensional. From the point at which you sear the chicken to the sauteeing of the onion and tomato mix, there is an opportunity to truly level up the seasoning to create a robust and delicate stew.

Skim the fat.

Before adding the potatoes, skim any excess fat. If you prefer to serve the chicken without the skin, this is the perfect opportunity to remove the skin of the chicken.

Leave the cilantro for last.

Cilantro is a delicate herb, unlike its cousin, culantro, used in sofrito like Puerto Rican Sofrito, which are ideal for cooking over time. Cilantro is ideally added at the end of a hot dish to prevent it from turning brown and overcooking. Cilantro is optional and based on your personal preference.

Nutrition

Calories: 584kcal
Keyword chicken stew, colombian chicken stew, rice and chicken, sudado de pollo
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