food · gluten free · pinteresting · recipes · what's for dinner?

chipotle taco bowl

I’ve been wanting to try my hand at making a buddha bowl or burrito bowl.  In case you’re unfamiliar, a buddha bowl (aka buddha’s delight, or Luóhàn zhāi) is a Chinese vegetarian dish traditionally eaten by buddhist monks.  As far as I can tell, the burrito bowl is Chipotle restaurant’s Mexican take on the buddha bowl.  It’s really just what it sounds like:  a burrito in a bowl instead of wrapped in a tortilla.  Unlike a salad version, the components remain proportionate, not just topping a bowl of greens.

I have been collecting (read pinning) variations on this for quite some time, but never quite got around to it.  I love that it can be vegetarian, whole 30, gluten-free, dairy-free, whatever you need it to be.  Just combine flavours that work together well, add a few toppings and bring it all together with a yummy sauce.  It’s perfect for a family with different preferences (like mine), because it’s deconstructed.  Each person can add or leave out anything that doesn’t appeal to them, according to taste.

My df girl (she’s actually not fully dairy-free anymore, but that’s a story for another day!) was feeling stuffy and congested today.  She asked for something with a kick to help clear her head.  I directed her to the freezer to see what we had to work with, then I’d come up with something.  We had some avocados (we don’t always, because they’re pretty pricey here, see here), so when she brought up some ground beef, Mexican flavours seemed to be in order.

I did some browsing and decided to make a chipotle taco bowl with roasted sweet potatoes (these are becoming a staple around here), corn, rice (for my cl boy), pico de Gallo, guacamole, shredded lettuce and cheese, and chipotle sauce (a favourite for fries and sandwiches).  A lot of these components can be made ahead, and you could even eat this cold the next day for lunch.  I don’t particularly like cold ground beef but my df girl doesn’t mind.  This was pretty spicy, so if you’re sensitive to heat, cut down on some of the spices.

chipotle taco bowl

Roasted Sweet Potatoes

2 sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed

Toss lightly in oil.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Bake at 400 for about half an hour.  Keep an eye on them.  They will go from beautifully roasted to well, kinda burned fairly quickly.

Easy peasy, but oh so delicious.



Chipotle Taco Meat

If you don’t want chipotle in this you could just use your favourite taco seasoning.  I tend to shy away from these.  I prefer to season it as I go.

  • 1-2 pounds of ground beef (I had about 1.5 pounds)
  • 1 onion
  • 3 cloves garlic

Brown meat with the onion and garlic.  I know–you should start your onions and garlic, then add your meat.  I. am. lazy.  As you can see, my meat wasn’t even completely thawed.  I did cover it for a bit to speed up cooking.

Mix in the spices:

  • 1/2 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • pinch of chipotle chili powder
  • salt and pepper

Toward the end, add in

  • 1 tablespoon chopped jalapeño (I just used some from a jar)
  • 4 slices of sun-dried tomatoes, soaked and chopped (this is mostly for a little colour)




Pico de Gallo

This recipe was adapted from the one found at  Mama Maggie’s Kitchen 

  • 1 tomato, diced
  • ¼ onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon jalapenos, chopped (again, I used jarred)
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely minced (they were small)
  • 1 teaspoon cilantro paste (fresh cilantro is hard to get here)
  • 1 teaspoon lime juice
  • Salt and pepper

Gently stir together.  Adjust amounts if the garlic and jalapeño will be too strong for your taste.  This is so bright and zippy!  If you don’t have some of the ingredients, you could also use ready-made salsa.




  • 1 avocado
  • 1 teaspoon cilantro paste (fresh cilantro is hard to get here)
  • 2 teaspoons lime juice
  • salt and pepper

Just mash it all together until it’s as smooth as you’d like it.  We like it a little chunky.  Make your own guac and you will never want store-bought again. It’s so fresh!  We sometimes add onion and garlic.  Somehow I lost the photo of this, and a couple of others…*shrug*.


Chipotle Sauce

  • 1 cup mayonnaise (you can use homemade if you have special dietary needs)
  • 1/2 – 1 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika (or chili powder–you may want the smaller amount of chipotle if you use this)
  • salt and pepper to taste

Mix everything together until smooth.  We love this…we use it all of the time for all kinds of things.  My df girl loves anything with mayo.



Making the Bowl

Arrange rice, meat, corn and sweet potatoes in your bowl.  You can pile it high or arrange it like a colour wheel (it is a lovely, colourful meal), with everything separate.  Add your toppers:  guacamole, pico de Gallo, cheese and lettuce.  Drizzle with chipotle sauce.


Dig in and enjoy.  I think the way you eat this just might say a lot about you.  My love ate his sweet potato and corn, then the meat with toppings.  He’s very practical.  My df girl and I arranged it nicely in our bowls, then ate a bit of this with a bit of that.  Toward the end, I did mix it all together. We are creative-types. My cl boy–well he just ate rice and meat with cheese.  He’s just particular.  Make this for your friends and see what you can learn about their personalities!

By the way, this–like many of my ‘recipes’–is just a guideline.  Add beans, if that’s your jam.  Go vegetarian with tofu.  Get more veggies with a fajita blend of peppers and onions.  Leave out grains, if you’re Whole30.  Add sour cream.  You get the picture…this meal easily adapts to all kinds of food needs and preferences.  Experiment and use what you have.  It’ll be awesome.

blog signature


Linking up here:
Happiness is Homemade #215 at the Painted Hinge
Merry Monday #199 at A Wonderful Thought
Talk of the Town #118 at Hunt and Host
Wonderful Wednesday Blog Hop #275 at Ducks ‘n a Row

My Pinterventures
Featured at Inside the Fox Den



3 thoughts on “chipotle taco bowl

  1. I love taco bowls and this one sounds absolutely delicious. It sounds like a great idea for Cinco de Mayo. Thank you for sharing on Wonderful Wednesday blog hop.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s