California Chicken, Veggie, Avocado and Rice Bowls

California Chicken, Veggie, Avocodo and rice bowls

So there seems to be quite the movement of “bowl” meals. I am not sure where that originated, or what it even really means. But whatever it is, I'm loving it. I suppose it's just a fancyish way of saying, a big ol' mish-mosh of really delicious food. The End.

Ha, just kidding. Anyway, where ever and how ever it started, we are here today, talking about this meal. Seeing how much food I can possible pile into one bowl, is basically my ideal meal. I mean who doesn't love it?! It's a great way to get nearly the whole food pyramid into one sitting, amIright? At least that's what this bowl accomplishes. Okay, enough about the whole bowl thing.

California Chicken, Veggie, Avocodo and rice bowls

Let's talk about what's actually going on innnn the bowl here. You've got your basmati rice (my favorite!), fresh favorites from the garden or farmers market (or the grocery store), such as, zucchini, tomatoes and red bell peppers. Then a poultry kick, which you can leave out if you're vegetarian. And my personal favorite, guacamole or mashed avocado anndddd feta! I had to leave the feta out in my kids and husband's bowls because they love to call it “stinky feet cheese”. Needless to say, they can't stand it. This dish has a whole lot of everything going on here, but they all compliment each other quite well. And no, I'm not saying they say, “damn zucchini, you've got some mighty fine grill marks there.” I obviously mean they go together beautifully. But I kind of like the first one better. But I digress.

This dish is wonderfully accommodating, and you can basically substitute anything you want. Don't eat chicken? Throw in some tofu! Don't like tomatoes? Leave them out or add beets instead. Don't like zucchini or peppers? Add some sweet potatoes or summer squash. Or carrots, or beans, or anything! The sky's the limit. You can also substitute quinoa for the rice, or leave it out entirely. Whatever you decide to do, make it and love it.

California Chicken, Veggie, Avocodo and rice bowls

California Chicken, Veggie, Avocado and Rice Bowls

Yield: 6-7 servings

For the chicken

  • 1 1/2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken tenders

  • 1/3 cup olive oil

  • juice and zest from 1 lemon

  • 4 cloves garlic, minced or grated

  • 1 teaspoon paprika

  • 1 teaspoon onion powder

  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

  • 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary

  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley and/or basil, chopped

  • kosher salt and black pepper

For the rice, vegetables and avocado

  • 2 red bell peppers, seeded and quartered

  • 1 zucchini, sliced into 1/4 inch rounds

  • 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

  • 2 avocados, mashed well

  • juice of 1 lemon

  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped

  • 1 clove garlic, minced or grated

  • 2-3 cups cooked basmati rice

  • 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese


In a medium bowl, whisk together the olive oil, garlic, lemon juice and zest, onion powder, cayenne, paprika, rosemary, parsley, and basil. Season with salt and pepper. Add the chicken and toss well to coat. Marinate for 1-2 hours or overnight in the fridge.

In a large bowl, combine the red peppers, zucchini, and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and toss to coat.

Heat your grill, grill pan, or skillet to medium-high heat. Cook the chicken until cooked through, turning occasionally, about 10 minutes. While the chicken is cooking, place the peppers and zucchini on the grill or in a separate skillet and cook for 4-5 minutes on each side, or until charred. Remove everything from the grill and let cool for 5 minutes. Once cool slice the red peppers into thin strips and cut or shred the chicken into bite-sized pieces. In a small bowl, combine the mashed avocado, lemon juice, parsley, and garlic, and season with salt and pepper.

To assemble, divide the rice among serving bowls or plates. Top each bowl of rice with the chicken, grilled peppers and zucchini. Add a large dollop of avocado and then add the fresh tomatoes and sprinkle with feta cheese, if using. Serve immediately.

Source: Adapted from Half Baked Harvest