“Happy happy birthday from all of us to you! We wish it was our birthday so we can party too! Ole!” This is the song sung by a group of disengaged teenage servers that would sing to you, shortly after they slam a sombrero on your head and deliver your sizzling platter of fajitas. The peppers and onions would be swimming in oil and there would be a giant scoop of sour cream melting on the side. If you don’t know that song and where it’s from, then you haven’t lived. When you are from a small town, Chevy’s was the hot spot and certainly where you would go for any happening Friday night. I love fajitas, so here is my modern take that doesn’t require a 400 degree platter and 6 ice cream scoops of sour cream.
When it comes to weeknight meals, I love to meal prep and have a few dinners to enjoy for the week. Babies are hard work, and sometimes it’s nice to just open the fridge, pull out the bowls, zap in the microwave, and eat. The Chicken Fajita Bowl is an easy go-to weeknight meal prep we like to do. It’s customizable and holds really well.
Having people coming over with a million different dietary preferences and allergies? It seems like everyone I know is one of the following: vegetarian, pescatarian, vegan, whole 30, anti-carb, anti-spice, paleo, keto, or tomato hater. I find it very difficult to feed my friends and family these days, and having your guests customize their fajita bowls pleases just about everybody.
Are Fajitas even Mexican?
I highly doubt the fajita, as we know it, is an authentic Mexican dish, but the flavors are certainly inspired by Mexican cuisine. The Fajita was popularized in the Southwest United States. This classic Tex-Mex fare is often served with strips of meat, bell peppers, onions, guacamole, sour cream, pico de gallo, and warm tortillas. Today, this dish is ubiquitous on any Tex-Mex menu and deserves to be made over.
How to make the Chicken Fajita Bowls?
To make the chicken you will need about 1 lb. of chicken breast or thigh. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake at 375 for 25-30 minutes or until 165 degrees F. You can also find pre-cooked chicken or a rotisserie chicken at most grocery stores.
For the fajita vegetable blend, toss the sweet potato slices, red onion and bell pepper with the olive oil, salt and pepper. In a large skillet over medium high heat, sauté for about 5-6 minutes or until the vegetables are tender. Add the garlic and sauté for an additional minute. Garlic burns very easy and gives an off flavor so be sure to only add at the end. Cleaning out your fridge? Feel free to add other vegetables such as zucchini, mushrooms or corn. Anything goes!
Layer each bowl with the brown rice, black beans, cooked chicken, fajita veggies, sliced avocado and drizzle with the delicious jalapeno cilantro lime crema. If you are feeding a crowd, double or triple the recipe and lay out each ingredient in separate bowls. Let your guests make and customize their own bowls. People love it, trust me.
Chicken Fajita Bowls with Jalapeno Cilantro Lime Crema
- 2 cups cooked chicken, diced or shredded (1 lb. raw thigh or breast)
- 1 avocado, cut into slices
- 4 cups cooked brown rice
- 2 cups cooked black beans, drained (canned or fresh)
- 1/2 red onion, sliced
- 1 yellow bell pepper, cut into strips
- 1 red bell pepper, cut into strips
- 1 sweet potato, cut into 1/4" half moon slices
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
Jalapeno Cilantro Lime Crema
- 1/2 jalapeno, destemmed and deseeded
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 1/2 cup mayo
- 3/4 cup cilantro (packed)
- 1 tbsp lime juice (approx 1 lime)
- 1/4 tsp salt
Jalapeno Cilantro Lime Crema
- In a food processor, blend the jalapeno, sour cream, mayo, cilantro, lime juice and salt until smooth. Set aside.
- Turn on the oven to 375 degrees F. Drizzle the chicken with olive oil and sprinkled with salt and pepper and roast for 25-30 minutes or until 165 degrees F.
- Note: to save time use 1 rotiseri chicken or buy pre-cooked chicken at the grocery store.
Fajita Vegetable Blend
- Combine the sliced peppers, onions and sweet potato with the olive oil, salt and pepper in a small bowl.
- In a large skillet over medium high heat, add the vegetable blend to the pan and saute for 5-6 minutes. Add the minced garlic and saute for an addtional minute and remove from the heat.
Prepare the bowls
- In each bowl layer the bottom with 1 cup of brown rice, 1/2 cup black beans and 1/2 cup of cooked chicken. Add the fajita veggie blend, sliced avocado and drizzle with sauce.
- If you are sensitive to spice, cut the jalapeno quantity in half.
- Remove the chicken and make it vegetarian.
- Substitute the brown rice for the grain of your choice.