This delicious Ancho Chicken Burrito Bowl is perfect for on-the-go meal prep including all the ingredients without the high carb tortilla. Fresh corn salsa is the perfect pairing.
If you prefer burritos and wraps, these work just as well when in burrito form. Use your favorite ingredients and fold the tortilla like you would normally.
Use the ancho chicken for tacos, tostadas, enchiladas and more. Shred it, add some spicy sauce and you can have a delicious sandwich.
- What is Ancho Chile?
- Can I make my own Ancho Chile Powder?
- What is Chipotle Chile?
- Why sear the chicken?
- Toppings for your Burrito Bowl
- Corn and Bell Pepper Salsa
The most important part of this ancho chicken burrito bowl is the array of spices. Making the spice blend is the first step.
What is Ancho Chile?
Ancho chiles start off their lives as poblano peppers. Poblanos are fairly mild and I use them frequently. Because they grow so well in this Arkansas heat, I usually substitute poblano for bell peppers in many recipes.
You can see how much I like it by browsing some of my favorite recipes. I love this incredible Cheesy Chicken Chili. For a soup starter, try this Zucchini and Roasted Poblano Soup.
Unlike fresh poblanos, ancho chiles have a rich smoky sweetness that works especially well when mixed with other peppers. For this recipe, I’ve included chipotle.
Can I make my own Ancho Chile Powder?
I’ve made my own chile powder. It’s really easy. You can start with dried chiles. Always wash them and let them dry first. You don’t know where those chiles have been!
Have a browse at all
We have two identical coffee grinders; one is for coffee beans and the other is dedicated to grinding peppers and other dried ingredients.
Ben from Fox Valley Foodie has a post on making your own dried ancho chiles then grinding them.
What is Chipotle Chile?
Here’s another fun fact. Chipotle is the dried, smoked version of jalapeño!
Chipotle not only adds a delicious smoky flavor, but it has a lingering heat. Unless you get too much, it’s not going to burn your tastebuds. It’s meant to warm up the dish without overpowering it.
Why Sear the Chicken?
I like to sear the chicken in olive oil in order to keep as much of the spice blend on the chicken as possible.
First, rub some olive oil onto the surface of the chicken then rub the spice blend. The oil will help hold the spices in place so you can sear without losing the full flavor.
Can I use Frozen Chicken?
Since this recipe requires that you rub in a spice blend, I don’t recommend that you use frozen chicken. The spices won’t adhere well.
If you have don’t have thawed chicken, place the frozen chicken in a bag then place in a large bowl of cool water. It will thaw fairly quickly. Mine only took 30 minutes.
Can I use Chicken Thighs?
Yes, you can use chicken thighs. Since this cut is smaller and thinner once the bones are removed, you will need less cooking time.
I would start out with searing then perhaps use only one minute of pressure cooking before natural release. The goal is for the internal temperature to be 165℉.
To be honest, if you’re using such a small cut, it could be cooked during the searing process and you won’t need to let it come to pressure at all. Check the temperature beforehand to be sure. You don’t want to overcook it.
What if I don’t have an Instant Pot?
You can easily make ancho chicken for your own unique burrito bowl by using your stove top instead of a pressure cooker. I’ve included the very easy instructions for that as well. See the recipe below.
If you don’t have an Instant Pot, have a look at this 6-Quart Instant Pot (aff link) which we use. We’ve had it for several years and it still works great.
Toppings for your Burrito Bowl
Burrito and taco bowls have only become really popular in the last few years. It’s a way to avoid the high carb tortillas. Use whatever toppings you usually love on the traditional.
I like to include rice and beans. Sometimes I’ll add tomatoes and lettuce. Radishes and red cabbage add a punch of color. Always crema and queso fresco.
Corn and Bell Pepper Salsa
One fun thing I threw together especially for this recipe is a corn salsa. Use fresh corn and cut it from the cob. It helps to hold the cob over a bowl or deep pan while cutting so your corn doesn’t fly everywhere.
Saute the cut corn in a little oil with red bell peppers and onion. You could also add some jalapeño for some heat.
This turned out to be a delicious addition. It was sweet and crunchy; a perfect complement.
Ancho Chicken Burrito Bowl (+video)Tap to leave a star rating
For more information, be sure to check the recipe details in the attached 24Bite® post.
- 6-quart Instant Pot Pressure Cooker
- 2 tablespoons Brown Sugar, packed
- 1 tablespoon Knorr Tomato Powder
- 1 teaspoon Ancho Powder
- 1 teaspoon Onion Powder
- 1 teaspoon Garlic Powder
- 1 teaspoon Chipotle Powder
- 1 teaspoon Oregano
- 1 teaspoon Cumin
- 2 tablespoons Olive Oil, plus any extra needed for rubbing on the outside of the chicken
- 2 ¼ pounds Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast
- 1 ½ cup Water
Corn Salsa (optional)
- 2 Corn on Cob, fresh, kernels cut from cob
- ½ Red Bell Pepper, chopped
- ¼ Onion, chopped
- 2 tablespoons Olive Oil
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- In a small bowl, mix brown sugar and all spices.
- To help keep the chicken from drying out, rub some extra olive oil on the surface of the chicken before rubbing in the spice blend.
- Rub front back and sides of chicken breasts with spice mixture.
- Place 2 tablespoons olive oil in Instant Pot and press saute. Allow to heat for about one minute.
- Place coated chicken breasts in Instant Pot. As you place them, move them around a little in order to distribute the olive oil.
- Sear chicken for two minutes on each side then remove to a plate and set aside.
- Press the Cancel button on the Instant Pot to reset.
- Add water to Instant Pot. Place the trivet inside, making sure that the little legs are on the bottom.
- Place the coated chicken breasts on top of the trivet and pour in any juices from the plate.
- Check the Instant Pot lid to ensure the seal is in place and nothing is blocking the vent. Place lid on top and set lever to Sealing. Press the Manual (or Pressure Cook) button on the Instant Pot and set to high for 3 minutes, then natural release. The entire cook time will be about 30 minutes. Check to make sure internal temperature is 165℉. If not, cover and allow the chicken to continue cooking (without pressure) until done
- Press the Cancel button to reset or remove cord. Open lid and remove chicken to plate or cutting board. Allow to cool for at least 10 minutes before cutting, chopping, shredding or slicing. Use the liquid from the Instant Pot to drizzle on the chicken, if desired.
Corn Salsa (optional)
- Remove husks and silks from fresh corn. Cut corn from the cob. Chop bell pepper and onion.
- Place olive oil in skillet. Add corn, pepper, onion and salt to skillet, stir well and cook at medium high for about 5 to 8 minutes, until onion and bell pepper is softened.
- The corn will still have some crunch. Use as one of the ingredients of the burrito bowl.
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