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Easy Rice Bowl Recipes to Try ASAP
Whenever I’m at a loss as to what to make for dinner, bowls are the answer! Rice bowls are a fabulous way to turn a bowl of cooked rice and any ingredients I have in the fridge into a well-rounded meal. They’re one of my favorite ways to improvise with leftovers, too. Begin with a base of rice and go from there!
Below, I’ve rounded up a collection of easy rice bowl recipes to get you started. Find your favorites to make for a healthy weeknight dinner, or prepare them ahead for lunches all week long. Plus, easy ideas and variations, along with helpful tips for the best rice bowls!
Why You’ll Love Rice Bowls
Wondering what to add to a bowl of white rice? With the recipes below as inspiration, you’ll never run out of tasty ways to convert a fridge full of ingredients into filling, nourishing meals. Here’s why you’ll be obsessed:
- Healthy. Rice, and especially brown rice, is a healthy grain that’s a high source of folate. Topped with your favorite proteins and veggies, rice bowls are a great way to get in your daily vitamins and minerals.
- DIY. The recipes in this round-up offer delicious inspiration. But, ultimately, you choose what goes into your rice bowl! Customize your favorite bowls with proteins, veggies, or what you have on hand. See the sections below for details.
- Great for meal prep. Rice bowls are some of the best all-in-one meals that you can prepare in advance and easily customize. If you’re looking for meal prep ideas, consider adding rice bowls to your weekly routine!
What Is a Rice Bowl?
A rice bowl involves a variety of proteins and veggies served over a bed of rice. They’re the ultimate meals for mixing and matching all kinds of healthy ingredients. Here’s a basic outline of what’s in a rice bowl:
- Rice – Start with a base of basmati or jasmine rice, brown rice, or cauliflower rice for a low-carb option. Or, if you prefer, substitute rice with quinoa or lentils.
- Protein – Next up, your choice of protein. You’ll find rice bowls made with chicken, beef, seafood, and more, plus plant-based protein like tempeh and tofu.
- Veggies – Pair your proteins with fresh, steamed, or roasted veggies, sauteed vegetables, and fresh greens. Arugula, kale, and spinach are all great options.
Are Rice Bowls Good for You?
Rice bowls are easy to make and satisfying whether you’re looking for new healthy meal ideas, vegetarian recipes, and more. As with most recipes, how healthy your rice bowls are depends on what goes into them! Luckily, as you’ll see below, there are plenty of ways to fill your bowls with wholesome, nutritious ingredients.
21 Healthy Rice Bowl Ideas
Get started with these easy and healthy rice bowl recipes! Feel free to follow these recipes to the “T” or change them up with your favorite ingredients.
I’m all about the convenience of canned fish like salmon and tuna. This easy rice bowl recipe is inspired by my favorite spicy salmon sushi roll. It’s the ultimate high-protein lunch that’s easy on the wallet, too.
These Mexican-inspired shrimp fajita bowls are an easy dinner filled with juicy shrimp, peppers, and onions, with avocado and salsa served over cilantro-lime rice. A family favorite!
This is an easy recipe made from sweet-spicy roasted salmon tossed in a honey sriracha glaze, served over a bed of fluffy rice. Topped with your favorite veggies (ours are creamy avocado and cucumber!), it’s a tasty meal in one.
Mild poblano peppers make a mouthwatering, smoky addition to these flavor-packed chicken taco bowls. These rice bowls are quick enough to make for weeknight dinners, and easy enough to prepare ahead for delicious lunches all week!
Looking for a new meatless meal to bring into regular rotation? Look no further than these spicy sriracha tofu bowls. This recipe is packed with flavor, easy to customize, and ready in no time.
This easy buddha bowl is jam-packed with delicious ingredients and dietician approved! It’s made with roasted veggies, creamy avocado, crunchy pecans, and a sunny-side-up egg layered over while grain rice.
These Greek chicken meal prep rice bowls are jam-packed with fresh Mediterranean flavors, and they’re SO easy to make ahead. They’re made with tender brown rice toped with zesty marinated chicken and Greek salad tossed with crumbly feta.
Inspired by a Vietnamese Banh Mi sandwich, this recipe lightens things up, packing all those Asian-style flavors and ingredients into a nourishing rice bowl. It’s made with juicy slow cooker pulled pork, pickled carrots, and crunchy veggies. Perfect any night of the week!
This recipe is a delicious one-bowl meal modelled after one of my favorite restaurant dishes! It’s simple to make with brown rice, arugula, tomatoes, and shaved gruyere cheese. I top mine with juicy chicken and a lightened-up sriracha yogurt dressing.
Make your own poke bowl with fresh tuna, cooling avocado and cucumbers, and a drizzle of spicy mayo served over a bed of rice. This easy recipe walks you through it!
This Hawaiian-style poke bowl idea is a breeze to prepare at home. Topped with marinated chunks of Ahi tuna, avocado, sweet-tangy mango and crunchy macadamias., it’s an explosion of flavor and satisfying texture!
Flavorful Korean beef served over perfectly-cooked rice is a quick and healthy meal idea, with under 400 calories per serving. And don’t worry, it still has TONS of flavor!
Fresh salmon fillets get a delicious makeover in these Asian salmon rice bowls. They’re made from tender salmon served over rice with crunchy veg, topped with soy-wasabi vinaigrette. Prepare to be addicted!
Who says you can’t enjoy rice bowls for breakfast, too? This healthy and savory breakfast bowl is loaded with saucy lentils and fluffy rice topped with bacon and chopped hard boiled eggs. Easy to prepare and super filling!
How Can I Make My Rice Bowls Even Better?
Once you have your assortment of protein and vegetables ready to go, there are tons of ways to assemble a rice bowl that’s extra full-of-flavor. Try these ideas:
You can also trade out any sauces and dressings with your own choices. Here are some homemade favorites:
More Rice Bowl Recipe Tips
You’ll see, there really isn’t a wrong way to prepare a rice bowl. But a few last-minute tips never hurt:
- Don’t cook the rice too quickly. Bring the pot to a boil, and then lower the heat. Heating the rice too fast will cause the water to evaporate, leaving the rice undercooked. Check out how to cook brown rice for more rice cooking tips.
- Prepare ahead. Rice bowl recipes are perfect for meal prep. Get a head start and prepare a week’s worth of bowls that you can enjoy for easy lunches and dinners.
- Store sauces and dressings separately. When preparing your rice bowls ahead of time, I recommend leaving off the sauces until you’re ready to serve. You can still prep the sauce or dressing in advance, and refrigerate it separately in an airtight container.
- Get creative! Rice bowls are excellent “clean out the fridge” meals. Change up the protein, grains, and veggies depending on what leftovers you have handy. Mix and match ingredients to your heart’s content, for endless variations!
Do you salt the water before boiling rice?
It’s recommended! Like pasta, salting the water used to cook rice will yield flavorful, seasoned rice. You don’t need a lot, maybe a half teaspoon of salt for each cup of rice, but it does make a difference.
Do I need to stir rice while it cooks?
Nope. It’s better if you don’t stir rice while it’s cooking. Agitating the rice can break up the grains and stir up the starches, leading to a mushy outcome.
Should rice bowls be hot or cold?
They can be both! Rice bowls, like poke bowls, are often served cold. Meanwhile, there are plenty of ways to enjoy your rice bowls warm depending on the ingredients you choose.