Mexican Chicken Quinoa Bowl

By Rena Awada | Updated On January 20, 2024

There’s so much flavor in this Healthy Chicken Quinoa Bowl. Packed with good protein and feel-good ingredients that make the ultimate dinner recipe and made with quinoa instead of rice. They are so easy to put together and are perfect for those who like to meal prep and are always on the go.

Mexican grilled Chicken with Quinoa and beans in a Bowl


We love this Healthy Mexican Chicken Quinoa Bowl.  Made with lean grilled chicken breast and served with cooked quinoa, black beans, corn, salsa, and sauteed veggies. This grilled chicken bowl can be whipped up in no time, right in your kitchen. Can’t go wrong with this simple, healthy, and filling recipe.

Like Mexican-inspired Meals? You should check out our chicken burrito bowl recipe that is similar to this dish, but also different in all the right ways. You may also like our ground beef burrito meal prep bowl.

Why you will love this recipe

  • Easy to make: You need just around 35 minutes to make this dish. It is easy to put together after the chicken is cooked and chopped.
  • Healthy: Made with healthy and good-for-you ingredients. Rice is swapped with a healthier option like quinoa and served with lean grilled chicken breast.
  • Delicious and filling: This Mexican-inspired grilled chicken and quinoa bowl is so tasty and keeps you full for hours.

Ingredients you will need

Here is a list of the ingredients you will need to make this grilled chicken and quinoa bowl. The full recipe will be listed further down below.

for the bowl

  • Sliced bell peppers
  • Thinly sliced onion
  • Cooked Quinoa: you may use rice, or try our cilantro lime rice recipe.
  • Black beans drained and rinsed
  • Corn kernels: may use canned, cooked fresh, or roasted corn
  • Salsa: or make your own at home. Store-bought pico de gallo works too
  • Light sour cream: or swap with Greek Yogurt

For the chicken and Marinade

  • Boneless skinless chicken breasts: you may use boneless and skinless chicken thighs
  • Olive oil: or avocado oil
  • lime juice: use fresh lime juice
  • Honey: you may use brown sugar or agave
  • Seasonings: kosher salt, ground cumin, garlic powder, ground black pepper, onion powder, and chili powder.
a bowl of quinoa and grilled chicken served with black beans, corn, and salsa

How to make chicken and quinoa bowl

  • Make the chicken marinade: To prepare the chicken marinade, pour the lime juice,3 tablespoons olive oil, and water in a large resealable bag. Add the honey, salt, cumin, garlic powder, black pepper, onion powder, and chili powder to the bag.
  • Marinate the chicken: Seal bag and shake to combine. Add the chicken to the bag of marinade, seal, and place in the fridge – marinate for at least 2 hours or up to 8 hours.
  • Cook the onion and peppers: In a large pan or skillet, heat the 2 teaspoons of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the peppers and onions and cook for 5-6 minutes or until tender and slightly charred. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Set cooked veggies on the side: Remove the peppers and onions from the pan; place them on a plate and cover with foil to keep warm.
  • Cook the chicken: Wipe out the pan with a paper towel then remove chicken from the marinade and add it to the pan. Cook over medium heat for 4-5 minutes on each side or until cooked through.
  • Prepare your bowl: Cut the chicken into cubes. Divide the quinoa evenly between four bowls. Top the quinoa with the chicken, vegetables, black beans, corn, salsa, and sour cream, then serve.
side shot of a quinoa bowl topped with grilled chopped chicken, black beans, corn, and salsa

Recipe notes and tips

  • You may use boneless and skinless chicken thighs instead of chicken breast. Don’t like chicken? swap it with ground beef, shrimp, or ground chicken.
  • Substitute the black beans with any other beans of your choice. Pinto beans work greak.
  • We use store-bought salsa. You may use something fresh like pico de Gallo, or chopped fresh cherry tomatoes.
  • Want to boost the flavor of this chicken bowl? Roast the corn instead. If you elevate the flavor of the dish.
  • Consider adding some sliced avocados or some shredded cheese.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Quinoa good for meal prep?

Quinoa is PERFECT for those who meal prep. It is a great alternative to rice and can be eaten either cold or warm. Quinoa can be reheated in the microwave.

How do you season quinoa after cooking?

Once quinoa is cooked, it doesn’t need much other than a dash of salt. But there are many different ways you can season quinoa to jazz it up a bit. You can add some or a combination of the following: lime juice, chopped parsley, chopped cilantro, and/or toasted almonds.

Do you rinse quinoa before or after cooking?

You do not need to rinse quinoa after it is cooked. Some may recommend that you rinse quinoa before cooking so that you wash off the outer coat of the quinoa which some say causes the quinoa to be bitter once cooked. We have cooked quinoa many times without rinsing it and didn’t experience this. But to be sure, it won’t hurt to rise a few times before cooking.

top view of a bowl with quinoa, chicken, black beans, corn and salsa

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Mexican grilled Chicken with Quinoa and beans in a Bowl

Mexican Chicken Quinoa Bowl

Mexican spiced chicken and veggies with a variety of fun toppings, all served over quinoa. Easy to make and ready in just about 30 minutes.
4.50 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Diet: Gluten Free
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
0 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 589kcal
Author: Rena

Ingredients

  • 2 Cups Sliced bell peppers
  • 1 Cup Thinly sliced onion
  • 3 Cups Cooked Quinoa
  • 1 Can Black beans drained and rinsed
  • 1 Cup Corn kernels
  • ½ Cup Salsa
  • ¼ Cup Light sour cream

For the chicken:

  • 1 pound thin boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 3 tablespoons + 2 teaspoons olive oil divided use
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice
  • ¼ cup water
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder

Instructions

  • To prepare the chicken marinade, pour the lime juice,3 tablespoons olive oil and water in a large resealable bag. Add the honey, salt, cumin, garlic powder, black pepper, onion powder, and chili powder to the bag.
  • Seal the bag and shake to combine. Add the chicken to the bag of marinade, seal, and place in the fridge – marinate for at least 2 hours or up to 8 hours.
  • In a large pan, heat the 2 teaspoons of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the peppers and onions and cook for 5-6 minutes or until tender and slightly charred. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Remove the peppers and onions from the pan; place them on a plate and cover with foil to keep warm.
  • Wipe out the pan with a paper towel then remove chicken from the marinade and add it to the pan. Cook over medium heat for 4-5 minutes on each side or until cooked through.
  • Cut the chicken into cubes. Divide the quinoa evenly between four bowls. Top the quinoa with the chicken, vegetables, black beans, corn, salsa, and sour cream, then serve.

Notes

  1. You can use rice in place of quinoa
  2. Please keep in mind that the nutritional information is calculated using a nutrition facts calculator. It is a rough estimate and can vary greatly based on the products used.

Nutrition

Calories: 589kcal | Carbohydrates: 67g | Protein: 39g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 78mg | Sodium: 1078mg | Potassium: 1328mg | Fiber: 14g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 3181IU | Vitamin C: 104mg | Calcium: 97mg | Iron: 5mg
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Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Anna Cate says

    4 stars
    Made this for meal prep this week, and it came together super quickly and is quite tasty! I have a few recommendations based on my experience. I didn’t love the idea of eating unseasoned black beans, so I dumped the beans into a saucepan, added a little water, and a seasoning mix I found in my pantry labeled “SW Chipotle”, plus some salt, pepper, and lime juice. Let that simmer while you cook the chicken. I omitted the corn, but I probably would have seasoned and cooked that as well. I subbed plain Greek yogurt for the sour cream to reduce the calories, and topped with fresh cilantro or green onion, plus some hot sauce!

    Overall, love the idea of quinoa instead of rice, and I’ve found this to be a very filling and versatile base for meal preps. Will definitely make again. Thanks for the recipe!

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