There is only one problem with the area we live in. No Chipotle. For miles. Nick and I are pretty much obsessed, and sorry but Moe’s just doesn’t quite cut it for us. I decided to try and recreate their burrito bowls for our Monday night dinner, and I am so happy with how they turned out. Even Nick was impressed, and he’s pretty critical when it comes to Mexican food. This is most definitely one of our new family favorites.
I had a lot of little jobs for Carli to do, but there was also a lot of prep work beforehand (cutting vegetables, getting spices ready) so I did all of that while she napped. It can be tedious to make everything from scratch, and honestly I don’t usually have the time to do this often. I really want Carli to learn about all the ingredients that go into the foods we typically eat, so I’m trying to take the time to walk her through that on the nights we cook together. This might sound like a lot of work, but I promise it’s really not bad. And so worth it in the end.
For our burrito bowls we had the following parts to prepare:
- Cilantro lime brown rice
- Mixed veggies
- Black beans
- Chipotle chicken
These bowls are dairy-free and gluten-free, and can be made vegan if you omit the chicken. If you follow a Paleo plan, omit the beans and you are good to go.
First we started with the rice, it takes the longest. To make enough for our family of 2 and a toddler I cooked 1 cup of brown rice. We had plenty leftover, which is what I was hoping for (easy Tuesday lunch!) To cook 1 cup of rice, add 2 cups of water and steam until all the water is absorbed. While the rice is cooking, go on to the chicken.
She takes her jobs very seriously
For the chipotle chicken:
It’s all about the spices. If you don’t like spicy, I would recommend cutting the chili powders in 1/2. If you love spicy, you may want to add a little more. The rub is really easy to make. Just mix the following ingredients together:
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp chipotle chili powder
- 1 tsp chili powder
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 Tbsp lime juice
- salt and pepper to taste
I cut two chicken breasts into small chunks and marinated in the chipotle rub for about 30 minutes. While this is marinating, go on to the pico and guac.
Admiring her work
When I was ready to prepare this meal, I already had the tomatoes, red onion and cilantro chopped and ready to go. This made it really easy to just mix everything together- especially since I was cooking with a two year old. If you don’t have the time to prepare these from scratch, they are easy to find in the grocery store. Even though it requires a little more work, it’s cheaper to prepare fresh, and I prefer the taste better as well.
- 2 roma tomatoes, diced
- 1/4 cup diced red onion (I used about 1/4 onion)
- 1/4 jalepeno, seeded and diced
- 5 stems cilantro, finely cut
- 2 tsp lime juice
- salt to taste
Taste testing- kid approved!
Just mix everything together- YUM!! The guacamole is easy too. Just mash the following ingredients together:
- 2 avocados
- 1 roma tomato, diced
- 2 tsp lime juice
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tsp cilantro
- 1/4 red onion, diced
Carli had the most fun preparing the guacamole. I’ve started to let her cut soft vegetables with a butter knife and she loved cutting the tomato (with my help). I let her use her hands to mash it all together- she was so proud of the part she did “all by myself!!”
By this time your rice should be about done cooking. You’ll want to let it cool for 20-25 minutes. While it’s cooling, begin to cook the mixed veggies, black beans and chicken. I had the veggies cut up beforehand as well to save some time.
For the mixed veggies:
- 1/2 green pepper, sliced thin
- 1/2 red pepper, sliced thin
- 1/4 red onion, sliced thin
- handful of mushrooms
Throw these in a pan with a little bit of olive oil and saute to your desired tenderness. While these are cooking you can work on the chicken as well. Just placed the marinated chicken you prepared earlier in a frying pan and cook until heated through, stirring frequently. During this time I also had the beans cooking in a small saucepan.
Finally the last step is finishing the rice. Once the rice has cooled, mix in 1/4 cup fresh cilantro (chopped), 1 tsp minced garlic, 1 tsp salt and 3 Tbsp lime juice.
Mix everything together and be prepared to be amazed. Healthy AND delicious!!