Homemade Frozen Burrito Bowls

Mornings are…rushed around here.

If I don’t pack my lunch the night before (I usually don’t), I’ve got one more thing to do in the morning in between rushing around with half wet hair and a puppy that wants to play and breakfast that doesn’t make itself.

If I have dinner leftovers, that’s great. But when I don’t? I’m scrambling around, throwing together random foods from the fridge and pantry to make something that resembles a meal.

Leftover salad, hummus, and rice cakes? Sure. Hard boiled eggs, cheese, fruit salad? That’ll work. But I don’t always have options like that hanging around, either. I try – hard – to plan ahead and at least have something easy to grab in the mornings, but we’re gone on weekends a lot visiting family and that makes planning for workday lunches even harder.

So when Foodbuzz offered the chance to try out the new Glad Freezer-ware, I knew it would be the perfect chance to build up some lunch options in the freezer for busy mornings.

I totally didn’t want to love Chipotle, but I do. Moe’s I can pass on, but Chipotle is soooo good. And so easy. And they really load on the guac when I ask for it.

But our Chipotle is downtown which means parking is a pain and it’s basically impossible to get there when school in session here and the students are everywhere.

So instead of dodging students in the road and wasting precious lunch time standing in line, I’m taking control of my lunch hour and making my own. Lucky for me, burrito bowls are super easy to make and even easier to freeze ahead!

I received two sizes of the Glad Freezer-ware to try out, and the smaller 3 cup container size is perfect for a lunch portion.

Once the rice is made, it’s a quick assembly line process.

Layer your burrito bowl options, pop the lid on, and freeze for later. You can make lunches for an entire week in the time it would take you to get one made in the store. Plus, your burrito bowl can have as much rice or beans or guacamole as you want, no questions and no extra charges.

I’ll just say this. I made these a day ago and 2 are already gone.

Homemade Frozen Burrito Bowls

Makes: 8 servings. Multiply as needed.

Ingredients:

  • 3 and 1/2 cups water
  • 4 cups quick cooking brown rice
  • 1 tsp salt
  • juice from 1 lime
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1/2 cup scallions, sliced
  • 2 cups fat free refried beans
  • 2 cups pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 tsp each chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika
  • 2 cups cooked chicken, shredded or diced
  • 1 cup salsa
  • 2 avocados, diced or mashed and tossed with 2 tsp lemon juice *optional to add now
  • topping options: lettuce, guacamole, cheese, olives, etc.

Directions:

  1. Bring water to a boil in a medium sauce pan and add the brown rice. Bring back to a boil, reduce the heat and let the rice simmer for 5 minutes. Take the pan off the heat and let the rice sit, covered, for another 5 minutes until the rice is cooked and all the water is absorbed.
  2. Stir the salt, lime juice, cilantro, and scallions into the rice and set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, mix the refried beans with the pinto beans, chili powder, cumin, and paprika. Set aside.
  4. In another bowl, toss the cooked chicken with the salsa and set aside. *If you want to add avocado to the frozen burrito bowls, mash or dice them and toss with the lemon juice to prevent them from browning. If you want to add them later, leave out now and just add to the top of your burrito bowl once you’ve heated it up, just before eating.
  5. Spoon some rice into the bottom of each container, then top with the beans, *avocado (if using now), and chicken and salsa mixture.
  6. Once the containers are filled, put the top on and pop in the freezer.
  7. Heat in the microwave when you’re ready to eat, then top with guacamole, shredded lettuce, cheese, or anything else you like with your burrito bowls. Serve with chips and salsa.

What’s your favorite lunch to make ahead for busy days?

Thanks to Foodbuzz and Glad for letting me try out the new containers! Glad/Foodbuzz sent me the containers to try and a stipend for ingredients, but the recipe, ideas, and opinions are my own.

PS: Check out Glad’s Facebook page to share your own freezer-friendly recipes and win some prizes while you’re there!

23 Responses to “Homemade Frozen Burrito Bowls”

  1. #
    1
    Blog is the New Black — June 7, 2012 at 7:56 am

    I think I LOVE this idea…

  2. #
    2
    Anne — June 7, 2012 at 10:45 am

    Great idea!

  3. #
    3
    Erika - The Teenage Taste — June 7, 2012 at 11:03 am

    This is such a great idea. Way to put frozen meals to shame!
    Bookmarking! :-D

  4. #
    4
    Amy B @ Second City Randomness — June 7, 2012 at 11:04 am

    I use tupperware all the time for homemade frozen meals (the crock pot is my friend). It’s so nice when you don’t have to think about making lunch- even when it’s the night before. I usually do it as I’m waiting for things to cook/reheat during dinner, but still- it’s an annoyance!

  5. #
    5
    Devon — June 7, 2012 at 12:52 pm

    See… I feel the opposite about Chipotle & Moe’s. I think its because Chipotle uses so much cilantro & I HATE CILANTRO.

    These burrito bowls are a GREAT idea though! I’m all about the grab & go lunch…. because I’m lazy ;)

  6. #
    6
    Jenn (eating bender) — June 7, 2012 at 2:02 pm

    This is so inspiring, Brandi! I love this idea and definitely don’t make enough use of my current Tupperware (or Gladware, as the case may be)!

    Thanks for the delicious recipe – we will try this soon!

  7. #
    7
    Biz — June 7, 2012 at 6:45 pm

    I’ll have to check out that freezer ware – great idea on making your own!

    Last summer we lost power for 3 days, I lost everything in my deep freeze. The only upside is now I have tons of room to put in it – I think this will be on the top of my list for lunches to make! :D

  8. #
    8
    Shannon — June 7, 2012 at 7:37 pm

    i’ve definitely made bowls like this at home, but never thought about freezing them! great idea :)

  9. #
    9
    Alison — June 7, 2012 at 9:17 pm

    Yum! These looks perfectly delicious and perfectly simple!

  10. #
    10
    Brittany — June 7, 2012 at 9:47 pm

    Burrito bowl are perfect for any occasion.

  11. #
    11
    Jessica@AKitchenAddiction — June 8, 2012 at 1:36 pm

    Love this! Great idea!

  12. #
    12
    Life's a Bowl — June 8, 2012 at 6:28 pm

    This is a FABULOUS idea! I got good for a while at packing my lunch the night before but lately I’ve been slacky mcslackster :/ A frozen option that is made days in advance is awesome…

  13. #
    13
    Peter Kingsbury — January 22, 2013 at 4:26 pm

    I made this last night. Some substitutions:

    - basmati rice in place of brown rice
    - black beans (instead of pinto; I couldn’t find them, so I went with Old Faithful)
    - added a can of whole kernel corn to the bean mix
    - used chipotle powder and cumin in place of other bean spices
    - used shaved beef as the salsa-meat

    It turned out fantastic; my daughter (the picky eater) loved it!

    • admin replied: — January 22nd, 2013 at 4:29 pm

      So glad you liked it!

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