Thursday, January 13, 2022

Make It At Home: Roots Bowls Copycat Recipe

When my daughter arrived home from college for Christmas break she raved to us about her new favorite food that she had found while at college - Roots Bowls. 

Famous from the Roots restaurant chain, these filling bowls are full of fresh, healthy ingredients and an amazing mix of bright flavors. Unfortunately there are no Roots restaurants anywhere near our home, but she was determined that we recreate her favorite Roots bowl at home...and we did!

Although it may seem that there are a lot of different ingredients needed to create this bowl, you probably already have many of them at home, and everything actually comes together pretty quickly. Plus, if you make a lot, you get a few meals out of them. I encourage you to try out this recipe, you won't be disappointed! Here are the directions...

You will need:
Fresh kale
Boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 2 1/2 cups raw)
Brown rice
2 fresh avocados
16oz bag frozen corn
15oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
Olive oil
Red onion, chopped
White vinegar
Pita chips
Feta cheese, crumbled
Lime juice
Chipotle Tabasco sauce
Cilantro lime dressing or marinade
Spices: coriander powder, oregano, paprika, garlic powder, chili powder, cumin seeds, salt, pepper

Wash and chop 3-4 cups of fresh kale and place into a bowl. I chop mine so the pieces are on the smaller side. Drizzle the kale with 1 to 2 tablespoons of olive oil and massage the oil into the kale. Set aside.

Prepare 1.5 cups of  uncooked dry brown rice  according to package directions and then set aside. This should make 3 cups of cooked rice.

Pit, peel, and dice two fresh avocados, transfer into a bowl and set aside.

Prepare corn by charring in oven:
Pour a 16 ounce bag of frozen corn onto a large baking sheet with a lip. Drizzle the corn with a little bit of olive oil (about one tablespoon,) then sprinkle with a little salt and pepper, and toss to coat. Spread the corn on the baking sheet in an even layer and broil for a just a few minutes to lightly roast the corn. It should look just slightly brown in just a few areas. Remove from oven, allow to cool for a few minutes, and then transfer the corn into a bowl.

Open a can of black beans, rinse, drain, and put into a bowl. 

Dice a small red onion, transfer to a bowl and then add about four tablespoons of vinegar. Put on a lid and shake to coat. Set aside. (good to do this a few hours before for the best effect.)

To prepare the chicken:
Prepare the spice rub by mixing these spices together in a small bowl (note: we use Indian spices but standard spices can work as well) These measurements are appropriate, you can use a bit more or less according to your tastes. We like it a bit on the spicy side:
1 T Coriander powder
1/2 T spicy chili powder
1 T Oregano
1 T Garlic powder
1 T Paprika
1T Cumin seeds
Dash each of salt & pepper

Cut 3 halves (about 2.5 cups uncooked) of boneless, skinless chicken breasts into 1" to 1.5" pieces and place into a large bowl. 

Toss the mixed spice mixture with the raw chicken pieces until thoroughly coated. 

Using a medium to large sized pan, add a drizzle of olive oil, heat to medium, add the chicken, and cook, stirring sparingly, until cooked through. You want to try to brown the chicken without it becoming too wet, so stir only occasionally so that the pieces get a chance to cook evenly, but allow to lightly char in areas. Total cooking time: about 6-8 minutes

Once chicken is cooked, assemble all ingredients in bowls as shown in photos.

Also assemble these items:

Cilantro lime marinade or dressing

Lime juice from a bottle or 1 to 2 limes, quartered

Pita chips, lightly crushed

Crumbled feta cheese

Chipotle flavor tabasco sauce

To assemble:
In the following order, add all of the ingredients into a large bowl with a lid, adjusting the amounts to your personal tastes. This makes one generous serving:

A handful of kale
A scoop of rice (about 1/3 cup)
A scoop of corn and black beans (about 1/4 cup of each)
A spoonful of red onion
A scoop of cooked, seasoned chicken
A few pieces of sliced avocado
A sprinkling of feta cheese
A small handful of lightly crushed pita chips
Drizzle the above with 1-2 teaspoons of lime juice
Add a shake or two of chipotle tabasco sauce
Dress with about 2-3 Tablespoons of cilantro lime dressing or marinade

Add the lid to the bowl and shake well until completely coated, then transfer to an individual serving bowl. That's it! Enjoy!

Article copyright ©Laura Beth Love 2022 and may not be republished in print or other media without express written permission from the author. For any link updates or corrections leave correct info in comment area.