Crockpot Mexican Chicken Rice Bowls
Slow Cooker Chicken Burrito Bowls are a fun and easy flexible meal for the entire family. Whether it’s a dinner each person can customize themselves, meal prep lunch, or served with a toppings bar at a party, this versatile recipe is sure to be a hit with everyone. Make the easy Mexican chicken in your crockpot, pile it on top of rice or cauliflower rice, then add your favorite fixin’s.
Disclaimer: This recipe was developed through a sponsored partnership with Cabot Creamery Co-operative. As always, all opinions are my own.
Make-ahead meal prep lunches may be all the rage, but in my house, we are all about DIY dinners. Sometimes it’s meats and cheeses and fruits and veggies for a charcuterie board. Other times I will gather up all the odds and ends from the fridge, make some homemade salad dressing, pile lettuce on everyone’s plate, and tell them to make their own salad.
But it’s not always about using up leftovers. Sometimes it’s about making a meal with different components that everyone can mix and match. Not only is it fun, but it makes everyone happy. And that is a total mom win!
I can make sure mine is gluten free and loaded with extra veggies. My big guy can add extra cheese and avoid tomatoes. The little one can skip anything mushy. The hubby can double up the meat.
That’s why I love Burrito Bowls. Especially this Slow Cooker Chicken Burrito Bowl recipe. And as a bonus, if you are the meal prep type, you can double it and package some up in your favorite containers for lunches all week!
What is a Burrito Bowl?
You’ve probably seen them at some of the popular Mexican fast food places. But if not, a burrito bowl takes everything you love about burritos, skipping the tortilla, turning it into a meal in a bowl.
Usually, it consists of rice topped with your favorite spiced up chicken, beef, or even beans. Then you can add all of your favorite taco or burrito toppings, from salsa to sour cream, lettuce to guac, and, of course, cheese!
Loaded with so many flavors and textures, they are delicious and gorgeous! And you can even make them nutritious too.
But by making them at home, you can use healthier ingredients and definitely save on some calories, while also having options to meet anyone’s needs, whether that means gluten free, low carb, or even vegetarian.
Mexican Chicken Rice Bowls
This chicken burrito bowl recipe is made simple by letting the slow cooker do all the hard work. Toss chicken breasts in a slow cooker with just a few seasonings and your favorite salsa. Then pile the shredded Mexican chicken on top of rice and add all of your favorite burrito bowl toppings.
Here is a brief overview so you can see just how easy it is to make. Scroll down to the printable recipe card for the full quantities and details.
But don’t skip my PRO TIPS below!
- Boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- Chili powder
- Salsa – use your favorite brand.
- Black beans – you can omit these for low carb.
- Rice – you can use a base of white rice, brown rice, or even cauliflower rice to make it keto-friendly.
Directions overview – scroll to the recipe card for the full set of instructions
- Add the chicken, chili powder, cumin, salt, and pepper to the slow cooker and pour the salsa over the top.
- Cook on low for 6-8 hours.
- Remove the chicken from the slow cooker, shred with a fork, and return to the slow cooker.
- Stir in the black beans, if using, can cover for a few more minutes to heat through.
- Pile the chicken on top of a bowl of rice or cauliflower rice, then add your favorite toppings.
Burrito bowl toppings
I always top my chicken burrito bowls with my favorite Cabot Cheese. Seriously Sharp is usually my top choice but on a dish like this, it’s fun to add a little kick with Pepper Jack. If you want to tone it down but still get the different colors and flavors, try Mild Cheddar and regular Monterey Jack.
You can use the same salsa you used to make the chicken, just be sure to grab an extra jar. Or you can make your own, and even change it up with something different like Mango Avocado Salsa.
This adds a lovely bit of rich creaminess. Chopped avocado is great, or simple get your favorite store-bought or homemade guacamole.
Sour cream helps to cool off the spice. You can also substitute with plain Greek yogurt.
Shredded lettuce, thinly sliced red onion, and jalapeno slices are classic. But maybe you want to get creative by adding some Chili Lime Roasted Sweet Potato Slices or other roasted veggies.
Corn adds a nice little pop to your chicken burrito bowls. You can drain a can of corn, thaw frozen kernels, or cut raw kernels off the cob. You can even make a batch of Chili Lime Corn for an extra burst of flavor.
For a bit of crunch, crush tortilla chips or buy a bag of tortilla strips. You can even make keto tortilla chips.
Finish it off
A sprinkle of cilantro can add a little freshness and a squeeze of lime gives the chicken burrito bowls a little zing.
Brianne’s pro recipe tips
Ways to serve burrito bowls
- Dinner – give everyone their own bowl of rice with slow cooker Mexican chicken and let them add their own toppings.
- Meal prep – divide the rice and chicken between containers. And toppings that can be warmed can be added on top. Otherwise, but the cold toppings in a separate container and add them after you’ve reheated your burrito bowl.
- Party – double the batch and keep it warm in the slow cooker. Set out bowls of rice and cauliflower rice and a variety of toppings on a big buffet and let everyone create their own.
Burrito bowls for special diets
- Gluten free – the ingredients in this recipe are naturally gluten free. If you choose to use tortilla chips as a topping, just be sure they are made with corn tortillas, not flour.
- Low carb or keto – omit the beans and be sure to use a brand of salsa that does not have added sugar. Use cauliflower rice, or just pile everything over a bed of lettuce. Be sure to skip the higher carb toppings like the tortilla chips, sweet potatoes, and corn. You can use low carb tortilla chips, cheddar crisps, or even pork rinds for some crunch.
- Paleo – omit the beans and be sure to use a brand of salsa that does not have added sugar. Use cauliflower rice, or just pile everything over a bed of lettuce. Skip the dairy and grain-based toppings.
- Vegetarian – if you are serving someone who doesn’t eat meat, try this Pineapple Black Bean Taco Filling as a meatless alternative.
Make it a meal
While this chicken burrito bowl recipe is truly a meal on its own, maybe you want to make this part of your Cinco de Mayo menu or build a Tex Mex buffet for a party. In that case, you may want to add some of these:
- Easy Cheesy Mexican Dip
- Pepper Jack Cauliflower Tots
- Refried Beans from Dinner Then Dessert
- Grapefruit Margaritas
- Sangria from i am baker
- Flourless Mexican Hot Chocolate Cookies
About Cabot Creamery Co-operative
Cabot is a co-operative owned by farm families throughout New England and New York and 100% of profits go back to the farmers. They have been making high-quality dairy products since 1919, and with a 100-year history, you know their award-winning cheddars will make this and any recipe extra delicious. You can use your favorite Cabot cheese, from Vermont Sharp to the Legacy Collection Farmhouse Reserve. Whatever cheese you choose, you’ll taste Cabot’s commitment to making the best products in every bite.
Plus Cabot is dedicated to communities, the environment, and volunteers. Learn more about not only the products, but also their B Corporation certification and the Reward Volunteers program by following them on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram.
More Mexican favorites
Slow Cooker Chicken Burrito Bowls
- 1 1/2-2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 16 oz. jar of your favorite salsa, mild, medium or hot, as desired
- 15 oz. can of black beans, drained and rinsed (can omit for low carb)
- Cooked white or brown rice or cauliflower rice
Burrito bowl toppings (use any or all)
- Your favorite Cabot Cheese, shredded (Medium Cheddar, Sharp Cheddar, Monterey Jack, Pepper Jack, or any combination) – about 1/4 cup per bowl
- Shredded lettuce
- Sliced red onions
- Jalapeno slices
- Guacamole or chopped avocado
- Corn kernels
- Sour cream or plain Greek yogurt
- Roasted sweet potato slices
- Tortilla strips or crushed tortilla chips
- Lime juice
- Place chicken in a 4- to 6-quart slow cooker and sprinkle with chili powder, cumin, salt, and pepper.
- Pour salsa over the chicken.
- Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours.
- About 20-30 minutes before you plan to eat, remove the chicken from the slow cooker andf shred with forks, add the black beans, and mix everything thoroughly before replacing the lid.
- Return the chicken to the slow cooker, stir in the blank beans, if using, replace the lid and cook on Low for another 20-30 minutes or until heated through.
- Place rice or cauliflower rice in a bowl, top with chicken mixture, Cabot cheese, and your favorite toppings.