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Chicken Bog is a Staple of Lowcountry South Carolina

The South is full of quirks and particularities that make it the charming, unique part of the country we love. One of the most important aspects of this region is its food, which is full of spice and flavor. Although we often think of biscuits, chicken fried steak and sweet tea when it comes to Southern food, chicken bog is as southern as it gets.

Chicken bog is a chicken and rice dish, cousin of Cajun jambalaya, pilau and gumbo. This pilaf main dish can be made many different ways, but it often includes an abundance of spices and veggies, along with Andouille sausage depending on the cook. To make it, a whole chicken is boiled on medium-high heat until tender, and then the rice is added in and cooked until the liquid is absorbed. Many recipes call for a Dutch oven, but it can be made in a simple cooking pot as well.

Although chicken bog has similar ingredients to its chicken-and-rice cousins, the main difference is the texture of the rice. Rather than the fluffy rice served with jambalaya and gumbo, the rice in chicken bog is moist and stewy.

Why Is It Called Chicken Bog?

Although this flavorful dish is a staple of the American South, it has origins in Spain and West Africa. No one is quite sure how the chicken recipe got its name. Some say that it's because the wetness of the dish is akin to a bog, while other say that the name came about because the area where it's eaten has lots of bogs.

Either way, this delectable dish is an icon of the south, especially in the Lowcountry and Pee Dee regions of South Carolina. Particularly in Horry County, where Myrtle Beach is, locals love a good plate of chicken bog. Loris, South Carolina even has a yearly festival dedicated to the dish, called the "Loris Bog-Off."

What is a Recipe for Chicken Bog?

This tasty dish is an easy weeknight meal with minimal prep time, perfect for feeding a large group. There are many different recipes for chicken bog, and the chef often adds their own touch to the classic comfort food dish.

chicken bog

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Some Southerners feel that it should only include chicken, chicken broth or chicken stock, smoked sausage, rice, salt, black pepper, and maybe onion. However, others welcome the addition of veggies like green peppers and celery.

This chicken bog recipe from Southern Living includes olive oil, onion, carrots, long-grain white rice, and rotisserie chicken. For flavor, it uses a few cloves garlic, parsley, lemon juice and parmesan cheese. Add bay leaves to make it even tastier, and serve with hot sauce for an extra kick!

Here's the recipe from Southern Living.