Simple Build-a-Spanish-Rice-Bowl

Sometimes I think I have picky eaters at my house. Then I realize that my kids eat a huge variety of foods and I should be grateful.

I mean, when I was a little girl, I liked exactly two varieties of fruits and vegetables: green beans (canned) and apples (with the peeling off). Somehow this kept me alive, I made it to college, and learned to eat salads (to avoid the Freshman 15, of course). Later, I got married and found out about a thing called broccoli. Little by little through the years, I’ve tried and liked dozens of fruits and veggies, expanding my repertoire many times over.

Though I still don’t like jicama.

It’s okay though because I often sit in my recliner snacking on raw spinach, which isn’t even weird, not even a little bit, am I right? I can’t figure out why my teenagers tease me about this.

Well anyway, my kids aren’t really picky, I’m realizing, because they like and eat a big variety of fruits and veggies. But still, we all have our preferences. Some of us really like cheese and some of us think it’s fun to snack on spinach.

Because of our wide variety of preferences, sometimes, instead of making a meal that everyone has to eat whether they like it or not, it’s fun to instead set out a big buffet of choices and everyone can build their own plate or bowl.

I love this idea so much that I include a category for this every single week in our Simple Meals plans. Build-Your-Own buffets are a huge time saver and make for a really fun meal too!

Today’s idea is Build a Spanish Rice Bowl.

I used to make Spanish Rice all in one pot, but some people like corn and some don’t. Some like black beans and some don’t. Some want sour cream and some don’t. I have found it easiest to simply set out all the fixin’s and let everyone build their bowl the way they like.

We each pile in our favorites:

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Then stir it up and dive in.

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The bowl above has a lot of greens (bet you can guess which mom that belongs to), no rice (can we even still call it spanish rice?), a whole lotta ground beef and black beans, and a dollop of sour cream.

But this one got piled up with rice, meat, beans, corn, and salsa without the greens and sour cream.

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So it got stirred up to look like this.

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At the end of the meal, everyone was satisfied and happy because their bowl was filled with everything they wanted and nothing they didn’t want. Of course, many participants in this meal filled their bowl more than once, which is also fun because they could either choose to fill it the same way as the first time or create something new the second (or third) time around.

Build a Spanish Rice Bowl

5.0 from 1 reviews
Simple Build-a-Spanish-Rice-Bowl
 
Author:
Serves: 4-6
Ingredients
  • 1 pound ground beef, seasoned with chili powder, garlic powder, and salt
  • 2 cups cooked brown rice
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1 can sliced olives
  • Shredded cheese
  • Sour cream
  • Salsa
  • Fresh greens
  • Cooked corn
Instructions
  1. Set out any or all of the ingredients listed above, along with anything else your family might like.
  2. Allow each person to fill their bowl the way they like.

Those are just some of the foods you might want to set out for your Build a Spanish Rice Bowl buffet. I’d love to hear of any add-in ideas your family might like.

Build a Spanish Rice Bowl

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Comments

  1. says

    We do this too and call them taco salad or rice bowls. Some things I add are chopped tomatoes, chopped bell peppers, (or sauteed peppers and mushrooms would be good too). chopped avocado or guacamole if we have it, tortilla chips to crumble over top. Sometimes I use shredded seasoned chicken instead of beef.

    Nacho/taco dishes are always a hit at my house!

    [Reply]

  2. Angela says

    Love this idea – we have several picky eaters in our family. Chicken would be my choice of meat here – YUM.

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  3. Laura S says

    What a great idea! Do you have a problem with any of your kids eating just the rice, sour cream, cheese and guacamole, while skipping all the veggies? I am afraid that would happen in our family.

    [Reply]

    Laura Reply:

    Yes, this is often a problem at our house. I make sure to at least always serve this with fruit, and I often insist that they at least put in some lettuce or spinach. :)

    [Reply]

  4. Kim Lofquist says

    We do this too! Mexican is a favorite in this house! We also like it when I make pan Nachos. I line two jelly roll pans with aluminum (of course you can wash pans later instead) dump tortilla chips on pan, then top with cooked and seasoned ground beef, black beans and cheese and broil it until melted. On the table goes all the toppings, and fresh veggies to munch on. Sometimes we use plates and sometimes we don’t ???? My fave is piling my nachos into a romaine leaf like a taco shell. For some reason several of my family has started copycatting me….and now it’s a fight for the best pieces of lettuce and the rest get scarfed while the kids clean up the table. Speaking of competition, this meal is it, between my husband and five sons, my little girl and I have to stick out our elbows and belly up ???? Thanks for the inspiration Laura, Rice bowls for supper tonight!

    [Reply]

  5. Kim Lofquist says

    We do this too! Mexican is a favorite in this house! We also like it when I make pan Nachos. I line two jelly roll pans with aluminum (of course you can wash pans later instead) dump tortilla chips on pan, then top with cooked and seasoned ground beef, black beans and cheese and broil it until melted. On the table goes all the toppings, and fresh veggies to munch on. Sometimes we use plates and sometimes we don’t ???? My fave is piling my nachos into a romaine leaf like a taco shell. For some reason several of my family has started copycatting me….and now it’s a fight for the best pieces of lettuce and the rest get scarfed while the kids clean up the table. Speaking of competition, this meal is it, between my husband and five sons, my little girl and I have to stick out our elbows and belly up ???? Thanks for the inspiration Laura, Rice bowls for supper tonight!

    [Reply]

  6. Elizabeth says

    Thank you for this idea. Softball practice begins this evening and I think this recipe will make it doable! Thanks also for a southwestern-style idea that is a bit different and won’t make me feel like I have to serve tortilla chips with it. Variety is definitely good.

    [Reply]

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