It’s generally not a good idea to eat fast food when you’re on a diet, especially if it’s a low carb diet like the one I’m on.
The one fast food item I have been able to eat is the burrito bowl from Chipotle, without rice of course. (This is actually a recommendation from Tim Ferris in The 4-Hour Body.)
I don’t like to eat out too often, and I thought it would be fun to try and replicate this meal myself. I made this dish exactly the way I order it from Chipotle, and I think it came out remarkably close to the real thing.
You can try it too and see what you think.
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs (approx. 1.5 lbs.)
- 2 tbs. vegetable oil
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- 2 Knorr Chipotle cubes
- 1 tsp. ground cumin
- 1 tsp. onion powder
- 1/2 tsp. black pepper
- 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
- 1 can black beans
- 1 green pepper
- 2 red peppers
- 1 yellow onion
- olive oil
- Guacamole (I used my perfect guacamole recipe)
- Pico de gallo salsa (I used a store bought kind, but you can find many recipes for it online)
Preparing the Chipotle Chicken
The chipotle chicken is what really makes this dish stand out. To really get the best flavor, you should prepare the chicken a day in advance so that it can marinade for 24 hours.
1) Place the chicken thighs in a zip-lock bag and add 2 tbs. vegetable oil. Close the bag, and move the chicken around so that each piece is well-coated with vegetable oil.
2) Mix together the garlic powder, cumin, onion powder, black pepper, oregano, and Knorr chipotle cubes in bowl. You should be able to crush the chipotle cubes fairly easily with a fork or spoon.
As a side note, I originally had a difficult time finding the Knorr chipotle cubes at my nearby large grocery chain store. I eventually found it at a small Mexican grocery store down the street. If you can’t find it near you, you can buy it on Amazon fairly cheap.
3) Pour the mixture into the bag with the chicken and coat the chicken well. You want to make sure the chicken is completely covered in the spices. Put the chicken into your refrigerator and let it marinade for at least 2-3 hours, but up to 24 hours (I prefer to marinade for 24 hours).
4) When chicken is done marinading, preheat the grill on high and grill chicken for approximately 5-6 minutes on each side. [See “preparing everything else” below for instructions on what to do while the chicken cooks.] Remove the chicken from the grill and cut into small chunks. Set aside.
Preparing Everything Else
1) While you preheat the grill and grill the chicken, slice the peppers and onion into long, thin pieces. Lightly cover a large frying pan with olive oil and heat on medium-high.
2) Fry the peppers and onion for at least 15-20 minutes, turning the heat down to medium-low after 5-10 minutes. The reason we cook the peppers and onion for so long is because we want them to become very soft and flimsy. This is to replicate the way Chipotle prepares their vegetables for the burrito bowl.
3) Heat a can of black beans on the stove over medium-low heat for 10 minutes or until hot.
4) Once everything is cooked, add each food to a bowl in this order (from bottom to top): Black beans, peppers and onions, chicken, pico de gallo, and guacamole.
I was originally skeptical that I could come up with a burrito bowl that tastes very similar to Chipotle’s, but I have to say, this was definitely a success. It tasted just like the real thing, and I know I will be making this many more times in the future.
[And as always, if you enjoyed this recipe, I’d really appreciate it if you pinned one of these pictures on Pinterest or shared this post on Twitter/Facebook. Thanks! ]