Chicken Stuffed Pumpkin Paella

Pumpkin Paella stuffed with Chicken and veggies

Sunset Place, Nashville, Tennessee
October 24, 2021
Dinner with Mansell & the Beveridge family 

Henry’s sister Glory was married at noon yesterday. It was a first class southern family celebration. Proud father, gorgeous bride, beaming groom, 16 bridesmaids, of which Mansell was one, and a parade of groomsmen. The reception featured deviled eggs, fried chicken and waffles and a glorious white almond wedding cake (I had 2 pieces).

This morning we attended a brunch at Henry’s family home, his parents Mark & Nancy Beveridge hosted family and friends from out of town. I enjoyed hot coffee, mini quiches, mini biscuits with ham and cheesy grits. Each room in the Beveridge home tells a story, new and old.
We felt comfortable, everyone was friendly and happy, proud to share stories about Mansell and the light she shares with them.

Tonight was our turn to host the Beveridge’s at Henry and Mansell’s house. This dish took center stage on the service table. I was concerned that the rice might not cook through, but it did. While still firm and a bit nutty it cooked through. 

Chicken stuffed pumpkin paella recipe:

Serves 6

Step 1

  • 6 pieces boneless chicken thighs
  • 6 tablespoons chicken stock
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • Salt & pepper

Preheat oven to 350° degrees
Place all on a sheet tray, roast thighs for 25 minutes

  • 6-7 inch round pumpkin 

Cut the top and bottom off the pumpkin, remove all pulp/seeds from the middle and discard pulp. Remove as much pumpkin flesh as possible from cut off pieces and dice. Discard skin from top & bottom.

Place the pumpkin cylinder on an oiled paella pan and roast for 20 minutes along with the chicken.

Step 2

  • 2 leeks, dice and rinse 3 times with cold water
  • 3 carrots, rinse and dice
  • 1 red pepper, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, sliced thin

Combine in a bowl with the diced pumpkin and then split in half (2 bowls).
Place 4 tablespoons of butter in each bowl.

Step 3

  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 2 cups Parmesan 
  • 2 green apples, peeled &  diced
  • 6 green olives, sliced
  • 6 sage leaves, chopped fine 
  • 2 cups jasmine rice
  • 16 oz chicken stock 
  • 2 tablespoons lemon zest
  • Salt & pepper

Raise the temperature of the oven to 425 degrees.

Remove the chicken from the oven and let it cool. Remove the pumpkin, too.
Place the contents of one bowl around the pumpkin in the paella pan, season with salt & pepper and stir until butter melts, add rice and stir. 

Place the contents of the second bowl in a large sauté pan over medium heat and stir.

Shred the chicken thighs into the same pan. Season chicken with salt & pepper.

Next add ½ of the panko and ½ of the shredded Parmesan and stir. Add any remaining stock from the chicken roasting pan.

Finally, add apples, sage, olives and lemon zest.

Transfer as much of this chicken mixture as possible to the roasted pumpkin cylinder.

Pour chicken stock over the rice mixture, do not stir. Use enough stock to float the rice. A visual ratio of two to one, stock to rice is important.

Top with remaining mixed  Parmesan and panko.

Place the paella pan in the oven and roast for 35-40 minutes. Check on rice occasionally, the dish is ready once all of the liquid has been absorbed and the crust has browned.

Pumpkin Paella stuffed with Chicken and veggies


  1. cssigniter says:

    Great receipe!

  2. Heike says:

    This looks delicious and so fun! Will try to replicate this weekend!!

Have your say