Perfect for an easy, balanced meal, these chopped chicken rice bowls with a tasty curry mustard sauce are always a hit at mealtime!
When the Godfather and I were undergrads at the university, there was a place near campus that was famous for it’s chopped chicken bowls and pita sandwiches. We ate there a few times, liked the food, and filed away the “healthy chicken rice bowl” idea for after we were married and had a place together. Rice bowls were a good compromise for us at the time. I liked a lot of variety and veggies and salads, and his main food groups were: coffee, rice/bread, meat, and coffee. Since rice bowls have two of the four food groups, I could sneak in veggies and a sauce so everyone was happy. Since we were both planning to work and pursue graduate studies, we were also looking for easy meal ideas.
Now, graduate school is years behind us and life is a little different, but we still look for easy balanced meals, because weeknights get busy! It doesn’t really get easier than grilling up chicken, chopping vegetables, whipping up a quick sauce, and dinner is done by the time the rice cooker has finished doing its thing. Everyone at the table can choose their preferred topping ratios and, voila! A balanced meal is served.
When we are on a lower-carb kick, I’ll swap out the rice for cauliflower, cubed sweet potato, or veggie noodles. Feel free to pick your favorite base, but rice is classic in our home.
This particular chopped chicken rice bowl recipe is very directly inspired by the chain we’d visit in college because they were famous for their curry mustard sauce. My version might not be an exact copy, it’s been a while after all, but we like it. Where the Godfather thinks I really did well is the chicken seasoning. It’s a very flavorful dry rub and really makes the chicken pop. Because no one likes boring chicken.
- 2 tsp salt
- 2 tsp granulated garlic
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
- 1/8 tsp ground cumin
- 1.5-2 lbs chicken breast
Curry Mustard Sauce
- 2 tsp sweet curry spice blend
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 1/4 cup yellow mustard
The rest of the bowl...
- 1 cup long grain rice, yield about 3 cups cooked rice
- 2 cups water or broth, to cook the rice
- 2-3 cups chopped lettuce
- 1 cup diced tomato
- 1-2 tbsp olive oil
- If you are using a rice cooker, place the water, uncooked rice, and a bit of salt (about 1/4 tsp) into the cooker and start the cooking cycle.
- Combine the chicken and dry ingredients in a container or plastic zip top bag. Mix well so the chicken is coated, and then set aside in the refrigerator for 15-20 minutes.
- While the chicken is marinating, wash and chop your vegetables. Set aside. Make the curry mustard sauce by combining the ingredients well in a small bowl and then adjusting seasoning to taste. Set aside.
- Preheat your grill pan over medium high heat. Add the olive oil, and then grill the chicken breasts until cooked through, about 3-4 minutes per side depending on thickness.
- Transfer the cooked chicken breasts to a cutting board and dice. Assemble your bowls, and serve immediately!