I was going to start this post off about how I wanted a meal prep that was quick and easy but then I realized that I’ve said that a lot recently. Is anyone else in a bit of a funk?? I don’t know if it’s because it’s starting to get nice outside so I want to be enjoying that instead of inside cooking or if it’s because we’re still fighting this global pandemic or what, but it’s been a weird time to be cooking for me.
Despite all that, this week’s meal prep is a great one. Quick, easy, and full of flavor, just the way I like it! There are so many variations you could do on this one, but I’ve kept mine pretty straightforward. In my opinion, the trick to a great burrito bowl is packing as much flavor in each component as possible. You could absolutely skip some of the steps I took, like what I did with the beans, but I think it’s a bit of effort that has huge returns. Here are the components I used, and a few additional ones that would be amazing:
- the rice – I used white rice for my bowls but you can use whatever you’d like! pretty much any grain would work, or a sturdy lettuce situation would be good too if that’s more your thing
- the chicken – crockpot chicken is my fav for this! literally half a jar of salsa and some chicken in the crockpot for a few hours and you’ve got amazing, flavorful shreaded chicken!
- the beans – you could use just drained, canned beans, but I think it’s so worth it to put in a bit of extra work to add some more flavor. they’re so good!
- the corn – canned or fresh are beautiful here! I love the little pop of sweetness that they bring
- the salsa – an essential for any burrito bowl. use whatever you like!
- the pickled red onions – these bring a bit of acidic punch to the party and they’re so easy! I put them on pretty much everything
- the extras – that’s all I used, but some avocado or guac would be great, as would some shredded cheese, or even some tortilla strips for some crunch! Use your imagination
That’s it! Below is the recipe for how I made mine, but feel free to mix it up to match your tastes 🙂
makes 5 servings
for the chicken
- 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breast
- 1/2 jar of salsa
for the pickled red onions
- 1 small red onion, sliced thin
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
for the base
- 1 cup uncooked rice, or other grain
for the beans
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 jalapeno, minced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 cans beans
- 1-2 bay leaves
- 2-3 tsp cumin
- 1-2 tsp chili powder
- 2-3 ears of corn, or 1 can of corn
- shredded cheese
- additional salsa
How to do it
- start the chicken: place the chicken and salsa in a crockpot. cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours until the chicken is easily shredded with two forks. shred it, keeping all of the liquid, once it’s done
- pickle the onions: in a small container, combine all ingredients other than the onion. mix until the sugar and salt are dissolved. add the red onion and let pickle for at least an hour before eating. they’ll stay good for up to two weeks!
- start the base: cook the rice, or whatever grain you’re using, according to the instructions on the package
- cook the beans: heat the oil over medium heat in a medium pot. once hot, add the jalapeno and cook for 2-3 minutes. add the garlic and cook for an additional minute before adding in the beans, bay leaves, cumin, and chili powder. cook at a gentle simmer for about 20 minutes. taste and adjust seasoning as desired. depending on the brand of beans you may need to add a bit of salt!
- prep the corn: if using fresh corn, remove the husks and boil in salted, boiling water for 3-5 minutes. let cool before gently slicing the kernels off of the cobb
- assemble: once all elements are done, it’s time for assembly! if using for meal prep, divide the rice (or other grain), chicken, beans, and corn among 5 containers. on the day you want to eat it, add the pickled onions, salsa, and any other desired toppings. If eating for dinner, go ahead and fully assemble the bowls. enjoy!