Monday, April 1, 2013

Burrito Salad at Home - No Foolin'

Salads are one of my favorite kinds of meals and one of the most versatile. As I perused my cooking magazines, I noticed how so many meals can be turned into salads creating a healthy and delicious way to enjoy my favorite sandwiches, leftovers and hearty home cooking.

Chipotle burrito salads are a favorite when Paul and I want some “fast food.” Here is my version, which was a bit labor intensive since I made my own fresh tomato salsa, corn salsa and black beans.

Burrito Salad
Inspired by Chipotle
Serves 4 meals

8 cups of romaine lettuce chopped
4 cups cooked cilantro/lime rice (recipe below)
1 cup shredded Mexican cheese
6 cups black beans (recipe below)
Sautéed onions and peppers (recipe below)
4 cups corn salsa (recipe below)
Fresh tomato salsa (recipe below)
Fat free Greek yogurt or sour cream
1 avocado, diced
2 limes
A bunch of fresh cilantro, chopped

1.     Divide ingredients on four plates and layer from lettuce to avocado.
2.     Squeeze half a lime (or preference) on each salad and top with chopped cilantro.

See that’s the easy part, it’s the prep that takes a while, but it’s well worth it. My advice, listen to music, a podcast (I listened to Wait, Wait Don’t Tell Me) or maybe an audio book to make the time fly.

Cilantro Lime Rice
2 uncooked cups white or brown rice
1 lime
1TBSP finely chopped cilantro
Salt and pepper

1.     Cook rice like you normally do whether in a steamer of on the stove.
2.     Add the zest and juice of the lime, to taste, to the water before cooking.
3.     Season with the cilantro, salt and pepper, before cooking.

Black Beans
Cooking spray
¼ of a red onion, diced
½ of a bell pepper, diced
½ clove of garlic, diced
1 tsp each, paprika, chili powder and cumin
3 cans of black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can diced tomatoes with green chilies, drained
Salt and pepper

1.     Heat a pot with a couple shots of cooking spray and add the onion, pepper and garlic.
2.     Season with paprika, chili powder and cumin, plus salt and pepper.
3.     When the veggies are soft add the black beans and tomatoes.
4.     Cook for 15 – 20 minutes on medium heat stirring frequently.

Sautéed onions and peppers
1 onion, sliced thin
2 bell peppers, sliced thin
Cooking spray
½ - 1 tsp each paprika, garlic powder and cumin
Salt and pepper

1.     Heat a sauté pan with a couple shots of cooking spray and add the onion and peppers.
2.     Season with paprika, garlic and cumin, plus salt and pepper.
3.     Cook until the veggies are browned and soft.

Corn Salsa
3 cups frozen corn kernels (I like Trader Joe’s roasted corn)
¼ red onion, diced
½ bell pepper, diced
2 TBSP chopped cilantro
½ fresh lime
½ tsp each paprika, chili powder and garlic powder
Salt and pepper

1.     Microwave the corn until cooked.
2.     Add onion, pepper, cilantro and spices to the corn. Season with salt and pepper.
3.     Drizzle lime juice to taste.
4.     Let sit to soak up the flavors.

Fresh Tomato Salsa
3 plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped
2 scallions, chopped
1 TBSP cilantro, finely chopped
1 mini bell pepper, chopped
½ fresh jalapeno, diced (optional)
½ lime
Salt and pepper

1.     In a bowl, combine all ingredients and season to taste.
2.     Let sit to let the flavors mingle.

Of course, you don’t have to use my recipes for each layer. Try your own and share with me. I would love to learn.

What’s your favorite restaurant makeover dish or salad? 

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