Recipe: Mexican Bowl with Brown Rice, Chicken, Beef, Peppers, Onions, Tomato Salsa, and Cheese

I just loved the Burrito in a Bowl at Chipotle Mexican Grill, so I was eager to try cooking something similar at home. This recipe isn’t really the same as Chipotle Grill’s version, but it’s healthy and I thought it tasted delicious. Enjoy!

Serves 4


  • 1 cup Brown Rice (all I had was short grain, but long grain would work better)
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 Tbsp Cilantro (I used dried, but if using fresh, you will need more, and you won’t want to add until rice is cooked.)
  • 1 lime – zest and juice (approx 1Tbsp juice)
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 2 medium Onions (I found wonderful “spring” onions at Whole Foods)
  • 1 medium sized sweet Pepper (green, red, yellow, or orange)
  • Half Chicken breast – about 7 ounces
  • 2 1/4 cups of Frozen corn (3 servings)
  • 1/4 pound deli sliced Roast Beef
  • 1 jar Tomato Salsa (I used Muir Glen mild)
  • 4 oz cheese (1 oz for each person – I had Cabot Vermont Sharp Cheddar, but Monterey Jack would be great too)

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Can’t Solve Problems With Food

I just read this on the discussion forum:

When you try to solve your problems with food, not only do you not solve your problem, you create another problem.

It makes total sense! I think I have come to an understanding of emotional eating. I am learning my limitations and doing my best to keep the triggers away. I know I can revert back to the compulsion very easily, but I think it’s helping that I am aware of it and I am learning to handle it better.


No, I don’t like papaya. Tried it this morning for the first time. It tastes like rubbing alcohol. Not that I drink rubbing alcohol, but somehow it just reminded me of it. Sort of a fermented taste, but not in a good way.

I guess others say they don’t like it as well, so I don’t think it’s just me.

ETA: hmm, I wonder if it was slightly un-ripe
One reply said “If it smells sort of like a petroleum byproduct, it’s not ripe and you don’t want to eat it”

Chipotle Mexican Grill for Dinner

Oh yummy, I have been dying to try the Chipotle Mexican Grill restaurant ever since I saw them on the Food Inc DVD. Fresh, delicious “food with integrity” – it all sounded very exciting.

DH went to a Chipotle for lunch with his boss, and brought home a menu. He raved about the food, and he isn’t even a big Mexican fan. So tonight, we decided we were in the area, so we visited the Chipotle in Nashua, NH

It was very fast, fresh, and delicious. It’s a great feeling to know you are eating a healthy dinner. I ordered the Burrito in a Bowl, with chicken, black beans, lime rice, loaded it with tomato salsa, corn salsa (spicy yum), and romaine lettuce.

I also ordered a side order of guacamole. I have never had guacamole before, and have been dying to try it. Well, actually, I think I had it years ago at Chili’s and didn’t like it. I also tried a tiny little bit at Whole Foods yesterday. It was out as a sample with some chips, but I couldn’t get a good taste of it. Anyway, I figured this would be a great opportunity to try it, since it seemed like it was fresh and well made. So, I ate my first real portion of guacamole, and I LOVED IT! oh it was so tasty! I am definitely going to make some of this myself for sure!

Oh and I still have a good portion of my dinner leftover for lunch tomorrow! Yum!

Overall, thumbs up for Chipotle Mexican Grill, except that the tables were dirty. I don’t think anyone was cleaning them. But despite that, we will definitely return, but not sure we’ll visit to the Nashua NH location.

One last pet peeve is that their mobile web site is pretty skimpy, compared to their fancy smancy Flash-based web site that cannot be accessed with an iPhone. I would like to have access to the Nutritional Data pdf, so I can see my calorie intake before I order.

154.6 – yay yay yay

Lost one more pound. Crazy! 154.6 – weighed on Wii Fit too, and it said 155

So that is about 45 pounds total! Crazy! I gotta start toning more, getting back to doing yoga more often! I try doing it for a couple of minutes in the morning, but now that my yoga mat is here from Amazon, I should be doing longer sessions!

Body Changes

It’s always surreal and amazing when I look at my body and notice how much I have changed after weight loss.

I love my ankles! It probably sounds strange to some, to hear someone say they love their ankles, but I used to hate them, because of the fat that settled down there. With fat ankles, there’s no doubt anymore, you are officially fat all over!

Oh and my collarbone! Yeah, I love my collarbone too. Feeling my thinner collarbone gives me a rush of joy and pride!

My butt, thighs, calves, knees, feet, toes, neck, chest, face, arms, wrists, fingers, and stomach are all body parts I notice now. I never used to enjoy looking at my body shape. Now when I look in the mirror, it’s encouraging to view lean muscle definition on my upper and lower body. Healthy eating and exercise has reformed my shape and it’s exciting to know that I’ve just begun and there’s so much more to accomplish!

I used to wear over-sized bulky tops, in hopes of hiding my “wideness”. Truth be told, it’s actually impossible to hide, but a girl’s gotta try, right? I was miserable. I hated clothes, and I always felt messy and unattractive. I didn’t care about my appearance.

But there is no feeling like the feeling of slipping on a pair of old jeans that now fit better than they did when they were originally bought years ago!

My confidence level is higher! I’ve started wearing less bulky clothes to show off my figure. My feet are healthier and look better. I am excited to wear flip flops again without being embarrassed about how icky my feet look.

I find myself watching the “fashion” shows on the TV shopping channels, getting ideas for fun clothes that I might like to wear. I look forward to wearing shorts this summer! No, I am not perfect, but I appreciate my body so much more now.

I have more energy, and my internal self feels fantastic! I’ve noticed how strong my arms have become when I am putting away dishes on the higher shelves. I don’t run out of breath when I run up stairs. I can reach itches on my back a lot easier because my arms are so much more flexible.

Moments like these are monumental motivators! I use them as inspiration to keep going! I don’t want to ever go back to the way I used to be!

Out to Dinner Tonight

Went to Piccadilly Pub for dinner. Did good.

I ordered the turkey dinner: two large turkey slices over stuffing, with baked potato, cranberry sauce, broccoli and gravy on the side.

I only ate two small bites of the cranberry sauce; it was SO sweet. I dipped my fork into the gravy bowl instead of pouring it all over my plate; it tasted flavorful but saved on calories! I only ate about 1/4 to 1/3 of the potato, I brought it home for dinner tomorrow.

It was a nice dinner. We had a gift certificate, so that’s why we went to the Piccadilly Pub, otherwise I don’t think we would go back. It’s not horrible, but there are better choices out there.

155.8 – Yay

I don’t know what’s up, but I am continuing to lose more weight. Not complaining, it’s just that I am really not trying. Just doing what I normally do.

155.8 – that’s another .8 from the last weigh in, for a total of 44.2. Holy Cow!

I guess I will keep losing until I settle into my final weight. I am curious to see what that number will be.

It’s a bit happy and scary at the same time, because the more I lose the more I have to maintain. Can I keep the weight off? Yes, I think I can continue to eat the same way, but can I keep the same fitness level? So many questions, and I don’t want to give power to these Automatic Negative Thoughts (ANTs) but it’s difficult because I feel like I am being cocky and overly confident if I don’t allow some doubt into my head.

But ultimately, I feel good, so it’s all good! I need to remember how good I feel, and how bad I felt before. I don’t want to ever go back!

Fasting Blood Test Today

I’m not having breakfast today. I need to get a fasting blood test. I am dying to see my numbers. I wonder if my cholesterol went down. It wasn’t too high previously, but it did continue to creep up and up every year. I seem to remember years ago, I was as low as 120ish, and last year, I was around 168. So, I would love to see a lower number.

I will update with my results later.

UPDATE: My blood test results were very good, but I guess I expected a bigger transformation, thinking my cholesterol would miraculously lower itself to 120 like it was when I was younger!

Anyway, this year’s test:
Cholesterol 166
Triglyceride 58
HDL 59
LDL 95
Glucose 87

2009 Test:
Cholesterol 168
Triglyceride 95
HDL 53
LDL 102
Glucose 84

2008 Test:
Triglyceride n/a
Cholesterol 163
HDL 54
LDL n/a
Glucose 90

So, as you can see, the numbers aren’t dramatically improved, except for my Triglyceride number. Of course I am pleased with my health, but it’s a little frustrating. My numbers were always healthy, even when I ate like crap and rarely exercised. I just wanted my numbers to reflect the way I FELT inside and out!

Steel Cut Oats – Breakfast Recipe

I adore steel cut oats for breakfast. I get them from the bulk isle at Whole Foods, as it’s cheaper and I can buy a smaller amount each time. I store oats in the refrigerator.

I have found that slow baking oats gives me the best texture. I have used a smaller 2qt covered enameled cast iron pot, but lately I have been using a (older) smaller Corningware baker with glass cover. You can use glass bakeware, cast iron, stoneware, etc. I like the Corningware because it’s dishwasher safe.

Recipe: 1 serving

1/4 cup steel cut oats
At least 1/2 cup of water, plus maybe another 1/8 cup
Dash of salt (to taste)

and this is where you can get creative by adding mix-ins:

chopped nuts: almonds, walnuts, pecans, cashews

Bake in 275° oven for about 30 minutes or until liquid dissipates.
After baking add in vanilla and sweetener: I like adding a tsp or two of honey.

This morning I added 1/2 oz of chopped almonds, baked, then added 1 tsp honey, vanilla, and cinnamon. Total Calories under 300!