I had a few inspirations that drove the creation of this recipe.
First, we have a local restaurant that we love, but can't always afford - isn't that always how life goes?! It's called Rumbi Island Grill. One of our favorites is their chicken rice bowls.
(pictured below - 2 photos courtesy of rumbi.com)
Looks yummy, right?!?
Second inspiration - During the hot summertime, I love to serve meals that are light, fresh, and don't heat up my kitchen too much during preparation.
Third, I always like to find ways to re-create our favorite meals at home for much less money.
SO - This meal uses a slow cooker for the chicken and you whip up the veggies and rice just before serving -probably 15 minutes cooking, tops! Plus, if I'm shopping sales, I can make this meal for about $12 for my family of 6 adults and teens. And it feeds our Rumbi cravings too - It's perfect.
I found the recipe for the chicken portion of this meal on Pinterest. The link (http://www.sixsistersstuff.com/2012/07/slow-cooker-garlic-and-brown-sugar.html) took me to Six Sisters' Stuff - LOVE their blog!
The chicken recipe immediately reminded me of Rumbi - YAY! - When my family started making the yummy noises, I knew I had a winner.
Chicken Rice Bowls - Rumbi-style
Chicken recipe from sixsistersstuff.com (link above)
Inspiration from Rumbi Island Grill
4-6 chicken breasts or thighs (frozen or thawed)
1 cup packed brown sugar
2/3 cup vinegar
1/4 cup lemon-lime soda (I double the soda to 1/2 cup)
2 Tblsp soy sauce
2-3 Tblsp minced garlic
1 tsp pepper
2 Tblsp cornstarch
2 Tblsp water
4-6 cups prepared long grain rice - white or brown - follow package directions
2-3 cups broccoli florets, steamed
1 cup shredded/julienned carrots
- Spray slow cooker with non-stick cooking spray.
- Place chicken inside slow cooker. (Six Sisters' Stuff used frozen chicken, I used thawed chicken)
- Mix together brown sugar, vinegar, soda, garlic, soy sauce, and pepper. Pour over chicken in slow cooker.
- Cook on low for 6-8 hours or high for 4-5 hours, if using frozen chicken. For thawed chicken, cook on low 5-6 hours, on high for about 4 hours.
Prepare rice (according to package directions) and steam/boil your veggies. We like broccoli & shredded carrots (throw the carrots in with the broccoli for the last 1 minute of cooking), but you can pick your favorite veggies here (zucchini, snow peas, stir fry mix, etc)
- Take chicken pieces out of slow cooker and lightly shred in a bowl. Set aside.
- Pour remaining sauce from slow cooker into saucepan.
- Place saucepan over high heat.
- Mix together corn starch and water, pour into saucepan, and mix well.
- Let sauce come to a boil and boil for 2-3 minutes, or until it starts to thicken and turns into a glaze. You'll need to watch the sauce and whisk it occasionally.
- Remove from heat and let sit for a minute or two (it will continue to thicken as it cools down).** I often make an additional recipe of the glaze (because it's YUMMY!)** Mix together the quantities noted in the ingredients list of brown sugar, vinegar, soda, garlic, soy sauce, and pepper. Pour into saucepan. Follow the sauce directions above.
We like to serve this buffet-style, but you could build the rice bowls before bringing them to the table. Rice in first, followed by veggies, top with shredded chicken & drizzle with sauce.
Oh my goodness, these are yummy!! Leftovers keep well for a day or two, but I doubt you'll have any.