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Quick, easy, and healthy, this Beef Burrito Bowl with Cilantro Lime Rice is an amazingly easy meal for prepping, or for a tasty weeknight dinner. You’ll love the uber-tasty Southwest flavor of this yummy dish!
Easy Burrito Bowls with Cilantro Lime Rice
One of my favorite easy dinners is the fabulous burrito bowl. Using cooked rice, taco meat, and all kinds of yummy toppings, you can pull together a tasty and healthy dinner in no time at all! Or even make a single serving to use up your leftovers for a quick lunch!
And it doesn’t have to be complicated! Burrito bowls are super easy to customize. I love having a variety of topping ingredients in mine, but you could also go super simple with just rice, lettuce, taco meat, and maybe a bit of sour cream or cheese. Picky eaters and foodies can each have just what they like.
So next time you’re not sure what to cook, or if you just feel tired of the same old thing, try this easy, flexible meal option! It’s sure to be a hit!
At its core, this is a super-simple recipe consisting of cilantro-lime rice, chopped lettuce, taco meat, and a drizzle of Southwestern dressing. You can make just one bowl for lunch when you are trying to use up leftovers. Or make your favorite taco filling and prepare enough rice and toppings for everyone in the family.
Let’s dive in!
- Rice: You’ll need some cooked rice. White rice tastes great with the addition of cilantro and lime juice, but brown rice is a great whole grain option. You can even use cauliflower rice! Or add some protein and make quinoa bowls instead.
- Cilantro: Mince a couple of teaspoons of fresh cilantro for each serving.
- Lime Juice: I like to juice fresh limes, but bottled lime juice is also great. You’ll need 1 teaspoon for each bowl.
- Lettuce: My favorite lettuce to use is Romaine, chopped. This provides the other part of the base of your greens and grains bowl.
- Taco Meat: I recommend 2/3 cup of my Instant Pot Ground Beef Taco Meat, per serving.
- Dressing: Top your burrito bowl with a drizzle of Creamy Southwestern Salad Dressing. Or go with something light and fresh like a Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette.
Burrito Bowl Topping Ideas
You can use whatever you like for toppings! Anything you love that goes well in a Tex-Mex or Southwestern dish will be awesome on these yummy burrito bowls. Here are some of my favorites!
- Chopped cherry tomatoes
- Black beans: Canned is fine, just make sure to drain and rinse them well.
- Corn: You can use frozen, just thaw before using.
- Crumbled queso fresco: if you can’t get queso fresco, feta makes a great alternative. Or stick with your favorite, such as cheddar or Monterey Jack.
- Avocado: Sliced or cubed. Or go with guacamole or avocado crema.
- Scallions: Green and white parts, thinly sliced.
But there are no limits, really. Add some leftover roasted vegetables, toss on pickled jalapenos if you like the spice, and you can even omit the corn and beans if you are going with the cauliflower rice option and want to keep it low carb or paleo-friendly.
How to Make the Cilantro Lime Rice
Making the rice is so easy! All you have to do is take cooked rice (that you’ve prepared yourself or even leftovers from the last time you ordered takeout) and add the other ingredients. If you’d like, you can also add salt and even butter, to taste.
- Cook Rice: Cook your rice according to the package directions. If you’re using cold leftover rice, reheat it. To do so, add it to a microwave-safe bowl and place a water-dampened paper towel on top. Microwave it for 1 minute, and then carefully remove and stir it. Microwave in additional 30-second intervals until warm.
- Combine Rice, Lime & Cilantro: Stir together the warmed rice, minced cilantro and fresh lime juice. Now you’re ready to assemble your bowl!
Assembling Your Burrito Bowls
To assemble your burrito bowl, layer the rice, lettuce, meat, and any toppings that you’d like to use in a shallow bowl. Add the dressing, and serve with lime wedges for squeezing over the top.
How to Store and Reheat Leftover Rice
Note that rice should not be saved and reheated more than once. If you use leftover rice to start with, it’s best to toss the leftovers rather than store them!
- To Refrigerate: Place portions into shallow, airtight containers. Refrigerate immediately; rice shouldn’t be left out longer than one hour at room temperature. Toss it out after 3-4 days.
- To Freeze: Store in freezer containers and keep in the freezer for three to four months.
- To Reheat: You can microwave, stir-fry or steam the rice (in a covered saucepan with a couple tablespoons of water). Make sure it’s piping hot all the way through before you serve it with the other burrito bowl ingredients.
- My Instant Pot practically makes the taco meat itself.
- As someone who often messes up cooking rice on the stove, a rice cooker prepares it perfectly at the touch of a button.
- If you are a sucker for gadgets, an avocado tool is a fun one.
- I pull my citrus juicer out of the cabinet any time I need to squeeze a lemon, lime, or orange.
Beef Burrito Bowl with Cilantro Lime Rice
- 2/3 cup cooked rice
- 2 teaspoons minced cilantro
- 1 teaspoon fresh lime juice
- 1 cup chopped Romaine lettuce
- 2/3 cup cooked Instant Pot Ground Beef Taco Meat or your favorite taco meat
- 1/2 cup chopped cherry tomatoes
- 1/4 cup black beans, from a can, rinsed and drained
- 1/4 cup corn, thawed if frozen
- 2 tablespoons crumbled queso fresco
- 1/4 avocado
- 2 scallions, green and white parts, thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
- 2 tablespoons Southwestern Salad Dressing, sour cream, or your favorite salad dressing.
- 2 lime wedges to squeeze on top
- If the rice is cold, reheat it. To do so, add it to a microwave-safe bowl and place a water-dampened paper towel on top. Microwave it for 1 minute, and then carefully remove and stir it. Microwave in additional 30-second intervals until warm.
- Stir together the warmed rice, minced cilantro, and fresh lime juice. Add the cilantro lime rice to the bottom of a shallow bowl.
- Arrange the lettuce, taco meat, tomato, black beans, corn, queso fresco, avocado, scallion, and cilantro on top of the rice.
- Drizzle on the Southwestern Salad Dressing or your choice of dressing.
- Serve with the lime wedges to squeeze on top.
More Dinner Ideas to Try
Quick and easy dinner recipes are the best, especially on busy weeknights. Here are some more that I think you’ll love!