Call it eco-friendly. Call it living “local”. Call it a workout. Call it European. Call it whatever you want.
I am so overdriving lately, and so prowalking anywhere and everywhere I possibly can.
I know I probably shouldn’t complain. I have a great little car that’s in good condition, I work from home and no longer have to sit in my car for an hour round-trip commute to work, I mostly just drive to see friends and do fun things, and even when I do, most trips around midtown in Kansas City rarely take more than 15 minutes. But still, I find myself increasingly avoiding any time I have to spend in the car. And instead, trying to think creatively about just how many of my errands I can conquer on foot.
The results have been encouraging, especially once I snap out of that silly Midwestern mindset where people tend to hop in their cars to go anywhere more than 3 blocks. When I tap into my inner New Yorker or Parisian, suddenly that 12-block walk to the grocery store is no big deal! That 20-minute walk to go visit a friend is actually energizing. The 1-mile walk to the movie theater is a fantastic excuse to have them add that butter on my popcorn. It’s all so surprisingly do-able, and actually far more enjoyable than wading through traffic in my Prius.
That said, the only thing that’s not within walking distance of my place is a Chipotle. Actually, for living in a city with so much great Mexican food, it is embarrassing how few good Mexican restaurants are within walking distance of my place downtown. There are definitely none that have the favorite burrito bowls that I love to order with seasoned chicken, zesty corn salsa, and a nice big scoop of guacamole.
So when the craving hit this week, I decided to take matters into my own hands — or into my own kitchen — and make it happen. We may not have a Chipotle nearby, but I live across the street from the city’s largest farmer’s market. So I walked over to grab some ingredients, and 30 minutes later, we were deliciously burrito bowl-ing in my dining room. Without ever having to drive an inch in my car. ;)
I have blogged on here before about how to make homemade barbacoa and carnitas. But lately as I have been trying to eat more lean meats, I have rediscovered my love of chicken. My complaint with chicken in the past has always been that it’s so flavorless and boring on its own. But when rubbed down with some simple taco seasoning, it’s amazing how flavorful it can be — especially when paired with some homemade guac, sauted veggies, corn salsa and cheese.
Oh, and quinoa!!
I know that most restaurants tend to make burrito bowls with rice. But I decided to swap in some quinoa to give these burrito bowls an extra dose of protein, which will also keep them naturally gluten-free. You could also use farro, or you could revert back to classic rice, but I highly recommend going the ancient grain route with quinoa. So good!
To make the burrito bowls, simply layer some quinoa (I recommend that you cook it in chicken stock for extra flavor), sauted veggies (I just used bell pepper and red onion), corn salsa (mixed with some onion and cilantro and lime juice), fresh guacamole (this recipe is perfection!), and a sprinkle of cheese on top (any kind will do!).
A big ol’ bowl of pure deliciousness.
All the better when it’s mixed up. ;)
Feel free to customize your bowl with any other favorite ingredients you might like, such as salsa or drizzled sour cream. But this is the bowl I typically order out at burrito restaurants, so this is the bowl I made at home. It’s savory, sweet, simple, and sooooooo good.
1 small red bell pepper, stem and core removed, then thinly sliced
half of a small red onion, peeled, then thinly sliced
Corn Salsa Ingredients:
1 (15-ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained
¼ cup finely-diced red onion
2 Tablespoons finely-chopped cilantro
1 Tablespoon lime juice
To Make The Chicken Quinoa Burrito Bowls:
Portion quinoa evenly between two serving bowls, spreading it out so that it covers the bottom of the bowls. Divide the chicken, peppers and onions, corn salsa and guacamole evenly between the two bowls, and add them on top of the quinoa. Sprinkle each bowl with some crumbled cheese. Serve immediately, garnishing each bowl with a lime wedge if desired.
To Make The Taco-Seasoned Chicken:
Rub 2 tablespoons of taco seasoning evenly over each chicken breast (on both sides).
Heat oil in a medium saute pan over medium-high heat. Add chicken breasts and cook for about 5 minutes per side, turning once, until the chicken is cooked through and no longer translucent. Remove from heat and transfer chicken to a cutting board and let rest for at least 5 minutes. Then cut into bite-sized cubes.
To Make The Sautéed Veggies:
Return the same saute pan to the heat and add the oil. Heat over medium-high heat, then add peppers and onions. Saute for 4-5 minutes until the veggies are cooked and softened. Remove from heat.
To Make The Corn Salsa:
Toss all ingredients together until combined.
This is a sponsored post in partnership with Old El Paso. I am partnering with them this year to bring you fresh new Mexican recipes, and all opinions are my own as always. Thanks for supporting the brands who help make this site possible!
I am impressed with your walking-ness. (Is that a word?)
I am one of those already-went-to-the-gym-today-so-don’t-wanna-move-people and I drive everywhere. I KNOW.
But, I am totally digging stuffing this Chipotle-inspired burrito bowl in my face, in the comfort of my own home! Pinned!
Thanks Taylor! : )
I am so jealous of the walkability of where you live. That’s the one thing I wish I had. I have a big yard, but can’t walk anywhere but around my neighborhood. It’s so good for you and the environment! I guess I’m glad you can’t walk to a Mexican restaurant, though, because this great recipe was born. :)
Thanks Maryea! If I could walk to a Mexican restaurant, believe me, I’d be in soooo much trouble! haha. Hope you enjoy these!
I wish I had a farmers market outside my doorstep – jealous!! I love this homemade Chipotle burrito bowl. Simple ingredients cooked and tossed together with perfect quinoa for a quick burrito bowl, love it!
This bowl is my everything. Just gorgeous. And I’m so happy the weather is better here so I can ride my bike again. I’m so over driving too! :-)
oh my – looks fabulous. Why am I never there when you’re making these delish things? I don’t think Henry can fully appreciate a quinoa burrito bowl!
I am so with you on walking in the midwest. We live walking distance to grocery, Starbucks, the library, ice cream shops, etc and as much as I would love a bigger house one day I would hate to lose our walkability location! PS: I want to eat this for lunch. Do you deliver? ;-)
Thanks Liz! Oh man, I wish I could! : D
LOVE and would like to face plant into that bowl.
Haha thanks Monique, hope you enjoy these!
At the beginning of this year, I made it my goal to walk everywhere less than 1 mile. Basically because I just hate getting in my car, maneuvering traffic, stoplights, etc.
I live in Northeast Philadelphia, which isn’t as congested as Center City, but my neighborhood has everything you could ever want, and it’s easy to walk to…CVS, Walgreens, a small grocery store, a few Wawas (one at the end of each block), Dunkin Donuts, the train station to take you into Center City, etc.
By the way, I made your restaurant-style salsa last weekend and it was UNREAL. I used one can of fire-roasted tomatoes and one can of Rotel, since it was in my pantry, and I cannot stop raving about it. I ate the whole batch over the weekend. Your recipes are fantastic. Have you considered writing a cookbook?
Hey Rachel! That’s awesome that you make walking such a high priority, and that you live in a city that’s so conducive to walking! And I’m so happy you liked the salsa! : )
I LOVE Chipotle and your bowl looks every bit as good if not better (that’s a HIGH compliment from me). Gotta try that cheese, have never tried it before! I so wish I lived within walking distance of a farmer’s market! I used to live in Seattle and walked a ton there, but not so much in Houston, the city of long commutes and traffic jams. Thanks for your blog. I love all your recipes and beautiful pictures!
Thank you Carrie, you’re so sweet! How amazing that you used to live in Seattle, it’s so gorgeous there! Definitely a pretty city to walk around in. : ) Thanks for checking out my blog. Hope you enjoy the burrito bowls!
Burrito bowls are my fave, and I have some quinoa sitting on the shelf right now.
Looks like I just found what I’m having for dinner!
Josh – The Kentucky Gent
Hope you like them Josh!
Is there nutritional information?
Hey Beth, I’m sorry but we currently are not publishing nutrition facts on the site. The nutrition calculators available are not 100% accurate, and we never want to publish anything that might be misleading. But many of our readers love the My Fitness Pal nutrition calculator, so feel free to try that for an estimate. I hope that helps!
Burrito bowls have never looked more gorgeous!!! This looks like the perfect lunch to make ahead & bring to work – Pinned!
Thank you Senika!
I think I’d probably go with farro over quinoa – higher protein. This Burrito Bowl sounds very nice.
I envy you having a big, nice farmer’s market near you. There isn’t much in the way of farmer’s markets here in the desert. I also commend you for preferring walking over driving. If it were feasible, I’d do the same.
Oooh, I bet this would be yummy with farro! Let me know how it turns out! : )
This recipe looks SO good! And healthy! I can’t wait to try this. Beautiful pictures :)
Love this! I’m a huge fan of bowl meals in general, and this one is right up my alley with the flavor combinations. And I totally agree on walking. Granted, I live in D.C. and generally walk most places, but here, the struggle is, “Do I hop in an Uber or on the metro to get somewhere that’s 8 blocks away, or just walk?” Laziness can creep in even for cities that don’t drive as much!
Question – How did you make the photo gallery/slideshow with the four steps for the bowl? I love that!
I’m with you — love a good meal in a bowl! And the step-by-step photo is an animated GIF. I have a tutorial for how to make them, if you’d like to check it out: https://www.gimmesomeoven.com/life/how-to-make-an-animated-gif/
You know this, but I’ll tell it just for the others – there isn’t a problem buying vegetable from supermarkets, as long as you are sure that they are organic and no chemicals were used on them – here I grow my own tomatoes, carrots, spices and even peppers and this is done on not more than 3×3 m, place! Just you have to be passionate about it – it helps you in the life even! Natural is good!
This looks delicious and healthy, but just a heads up there is actually a Chipotle 2 blocks south of the grocery store in the power and light district.
Thanks Joselyn, and oops, I had no idea!
That was always my favorite thing about visiting Paris — all of the walking! My mom wore a pedometer one summer when we went, and we ended up walking 6-8 miles every day. It was so much fun, and it totally balanced out all of the chocolate croissants and fruit tarts we ate every day! ;) I still have yet to make my own burrito bowls at home, but I just (as in last week) rediscovered my love for quinoa. My dad may have nearly force-fed it to me in the past (“Here, try this! I just cooked it!” as I walked through the door…), but that was yearsssss ago. So now that I’m on a quinoa kick, I’m all over these bowls!
Oh Paris, such a beautiful city to walk everywhere in! 6-8 miles is super impressive! I’d have to walk that much each day too with all of the pastries I’d be eating! haha And I think these bowls would work really well with different grains (rice, being the obvious one), but farro, freekeh and bulgur would be nice too. Enjoy! : )
I’m not the biggest fan of Quinoa, but this looks so delicious! I will definitely need to try this recipe.
Hope you like it! : )
These look so delicious and filling! I love all of the ingredients individually, and all put together, the colors look so stunning!
Thank you, Molly! : )
I love making burrito bowls at home! We have a Chipotle within a short drive, but definitely not close enough to walk. I love using quinoa in place of the rice, too!
Aren’t they fun, Jessica? I prefer making them myself, because then there are no limitations to what I can add! They’re so fun and easy to mix up, and the quinoa’s definitely healthier. I can’t seem to get enough of it! : )
I like your burrito bowls and I especially like the salsas. Thank you for your post.
Pinning this to my Mexican dishes to try this summer! Looks so healthy AND tasty. Oh and simple – who doesn’t love simple to top it all off?
Thanks, Joann! Hope you enjoy! : )
Made this tonight for my boyfriend and dad and it was a HUGE hit! They both loved it! Definitely will be making this again :)
That’s awesome, Katy, we’re so glad you and your family loved them!
OMG! just made this and it A-MA-ZINGGGGG!
Even my husband who was a bit skeptical when I was cooking the quinoa devoured it.
Thanks, Patty, we’re so glad to hear that! : )
I just made this for dinner!!!!! Absolutely DELICIOUS!!!!!!!
Thanks Chelsea, we’re so happy you loved these! :)
This sounds so good! I love Chipotles bowls and can see that this recipe will be a great go to when I want to impress my hubby with my culinary talents. Thanks!
I made this last night for dinner and had some for lunch at work today, one word AMAZING!!! I just made cilantro lime quinoa instead of leaving it plain. Awsome recipe! Love your website! ??
We’re so happy you liked it Michelle, thanks for sharing with us! That cilantro lime quinoa sounds wonderful too, good thinking! :)
I absolutely love this recipe!!! The only thing that I did that was different was a Cilantro lime quinoa. By far way better then Chipotle plus no side dish of salmonella! Thanks for this amazing recipe!!
Thanks Michelle, we’re happy to hear that, and we think that cilantro lime quinoa sounds fantastic! :)
I made this tonight and it was delicious. I added a fair bit of cayenne pepper and chilli to it, made some Cajun sweet potato wedges, I reduced down the quinoa and added in some mixed greens then with my own orange dressing. This is now a new favourite . Thanks
Thanks for sharing Sarah, we’re so glad you enjoyed it, and we think your orange dressing sounds amazing! :)
This was the best healthy thing I’ve made in a while. So so SO good-I was so impressed! Totally worth the mess I had to clean up in the kitchen hehe
Thanks Kaysie, we’re so happy you loved this! :)
Hi! I want to make this ahead of time. How do you suggest I store and reheat it?
Hey Nina! We’d suggest making your corn salsa, cooking your quinoa, veggies and chicken in advance, storing all four separately (in the fridge, after they’ve cooled completely). Then we’d suggest portioning out your quinoa, chicken and veggies in your bowl, and reheating in the microwave. Then add your salsa, guacamole and cheese. We hope you enjoy!
My family LOVES Chipotle. We’ll say “We haven’t been to Chipotle in foreeevvveerrr”, but it’s actually probably only been 2 weeks! Chicken burrito bowl is my absolute favorite so I was ecstatic when I saw your recipe for healthy homemade burrito bowls. I featured it in my latest post, “Kick Start The New Year #3: 15 Healthy Lunches”!
Yay, we hope you and your family loves these Ashlyn – thanks for featuring the recipe on your blog, you’re awesome! :D
I just had this for lunch. I swapped the chicken for shrimp and wow. What a delicious and filling meal. Thanks for the awesome recipes.
We’re so glad you enjoyed it Gabby! :D
This is a brilliant idea and recipe! I review and recreate recipes on my blog. I collate recipes that are suitable for people who suffer from IBS and need quick healthy mid week recipes.
If you want to check out how we went in the FPS kitchen, you can see it here https://www.foodprepsundays.com/new-recipes/mexican-quinoa-bowls/
You’re recipes are always amazing Ali and every time I hit a dry patch in the blogging world, I always think of your youtube clip ‘The Blogging Life’. You’re the best!
Hi Anna! Ali is in New Zealand, so I am responding to comments on her behalf. We’re so glad you enjoyed these and that you’re a fan — thank you! :D
This was delicious!! I followed the directions to a tee and it was perfect – I love when a recipe works! You’ve given us a healthy new option with quinoa and I thank you!!
We’re so glad you enjoyed these Katie! :)
I stumbled across this website and am so happy I did. I am a mom to a six year old son and am slowly learning how to cook (better late than never). I made a variation of this burrito bowl (quinoa, chicken, guac, black beans, corn and red onion) and my son absolutely loved it. The directions are so easy to follow and the pictures are beautiful. Thank you for your site. I look forward to making many more meals and working on my confidence in the kitchen. Cheers to clean, healthy and delicious eating!
Hi Kayla! Thank you for taking the time to share this with us — we’re so glad to hear you and your son enjoyed these! :)
Just made this and its soooo good!!
We’re happy you liked it Jacqueline!
Ive never had quinoa before so i was abit unsure, since having my daughter ive been eating horrendously. Before my daughter i ate clean but it was very typical, piece of meat and small serving of carrot, corn and broccoli. This has seriously opened my eyes to exploring and trying new things haha ive only had 2 spoonfuls and had to come here to say that anyone whos reading this recipe and never tried it- NEEDS to try it asap lol thankyou for something so amazing
Thank you for your sweet words Char! We’re so glad you enjoy quinoa now and this recipe! :)
Are these bowl supposed to be eaten cold; heated chicken: completely hot; partly hot/cold, etc ? I’ve never tried these bowls before …
Hi Rose! We prefer eating them hot (for leftovers, we reheat the chicken and quinoa and sautéed veggies, and then scoop the corn salsa, guac, cotija cheese on fresh, since you don’t want to microwave those). We hope you enjoy!
Are these bowls supposed to be eaten cold; heated chicken: completely hot; partly hot/cold, etc ? I’ve never tried these bowls before …
I am a mid 20s male and absolute foodie. This recipe is really incredible, it’s so good when reheated. I add the cheese and a little salsa while cooking, then guacamole after (sabrah indibodual gauc snack pack things are perfect for this). Truly awesome.
One question – for whatever reason the taco seasoning just seems to burn and stick in the pan. At least mine (el paso). Can I add some to make a thick paste? Would that help?
Thanks for sharing with us, Alex — we’re thrilled that you love the recipe! As for the taco seasoning, we have a recipe for homemade taco seasoning if you’re interested (here), but adding a little water or chicken stock to it (just enough to make a thick paste) is a good idea for preventing it from burning and sticking to the pan. We hope this helps!
Really yummy! My husband and I loved it! I will definitely make this again. Thanks ?
Had this for dinner tonight and meal prepped 3 more for this week. Super yummy, makes me excited for lunch this week! Thanks for sharing!
Just made this, DELICIOUS, thank you for making healthy food yummy!
Loved this. My preference is to have a little less raw red onion but everything was so great together. I tripled the recipe. Used the leftovers as lunches. Fed me and my family all week.
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