Chicken Larb Bowls from cookbook #2 is happening today. GET PUMPED. This was hands down the most popular recipe from that cookbook! The first time I had Chicken Larb (Larb Gai) I was at Night + Market in West Hollywood. The moment I tried this amazing dish I knew that I had to try and make it at home.
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If you haven’t snagged a copy of my 2nd cookbook yet, you’re totally missing out! It’s packed to the brim of California inspired recipes that are easy to make and even easier to eat. It’s been so fun watching everyone make their favorite recipes over the last 4ish years and 1 recipe that keeps popping up again and again on social media is the larb bowl!!
What is Chicken Larb?
It’s incredibly flavorful, kids of all ages will love it, adults will devour it and it’s easy. I make it at least once a week for Thomas and I and neither of us can get enough.
If you’ve never heard of Larb before – it’s a meat dish and is a staple dish of both Laos and Thailand. The Laotian version of Larb uses fish sauce and the Thai version omits the fish sauce and relies more on spices. The version below is by no means super traditional – but it’s incredibly flavorful and after seeing you guys make it for years on end, I know we’re all obsessed.
Where does Chicken Larb come from?
Chicken larb (also spelled laab or laap) is a popular dish in the cuisine of Laos and northeastern Thailand.
Larb is believed to have originated in Laos, and it has since become a popular dish throughout the region, particularly in the northeastern provinces of Thailand, where it is known as “larb gai” (chicken larb). It is often served with sticky rice and fresh vegetables, and can be found in local markets, street food stalls, and restaurants.
Larb has also gained popularity in other parts of the world, particularly in North America, Europe, and Australia, where it is often featured on Thai restaurant menus.
Traditional Chicken Larb is a type of salad made with minced chicken, lime juice, fish sauce, chili peppers, roasted rice powder, and fresh herbs such as mint, cilantro, and scallions.
My iteration of this recipe calls for the following ingredients
For the quick pickles
- Persian Cucumbers
- Red Onion
- Rice Vinegar
For the chicken
- Vegetable Oil
- Ground Chicken
- Soy Sauce
- Sambal Oelek
- Brown Sugar
For the rice
- Coconut Milk
- Kosher Salt
- Jasmine Rice
- Mint leaves
- Basil leaves
- Cilantro leaves
Other Great Recipes:
- Ginger Scallion Chicken Bowls
- Skillet Chipotle Chicken Enchilada Bake
- Grilled Lemonade Chicken
- Lebanese Chicken Meatballs
- Chicken Parmesan
- Chicken Schnitzel
- Homemade Orange Chicken
Stuck in a dinner rut? Looking for new delicious dinner ideas? Check out my roundup of 50+ easy dinner ideas here.
Chicken Larb Bowls
For the quick pickles:
- 2 Persian cucumbers thinly sliced
- ½ red onion thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
For the chicken:
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 5 ounces kale deveined and chopped
- 1 pound ground chicken
- 2 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 6 scallions white and light green parts, thinly sliced
- 2 to 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 to 2 tablespoons sambal oelek
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
For the rice:
- 2 cups water
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 cups jasmine rice
- zest and juice of 1 lime
- fresh mint leaves
- fresh basil leaves
- fresh cilantro leaves
To make the quick pickles:
- In a small bowl, toss the cucumbers, red onion, and vinegar. Set aside to marinate while you cook the chicken.
To make the chicken:
- In a large, heavy-bottomed skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the kale and cook until wilted, 5 to 6 minutes. Season with salt and carefully transfer to a medium bowl.
- Add the ground chicken to the same skillet and cook, breaking it apart with the back of a wooden spoon and stirring frequently until no pink remains, 8 to 10 minutes.
- Add the garlic and scallions and cook for 1 minute, or until fragrant. Add the soy sauce, sambal oelek, and brown sugar and stir to combine. Return the cooked kale to the skillet and stir to combine. Season with salt and reduce the heat to low until ready to serve.
To make the rice:
- Combine the water, coconut milk, sugar, and salt in a medium saucepan and heat over medium-high heat until the mixture starts to simmer. Add the rice and bring back to a low simmer. Cover the pot, reduce the heat to low, and cook undisturbed for about 15 minutes, until all the liquid has been absorbed.
- Turn off the heat and let the rice steam for another 5 to 10 minutes, until fully cooked and soft. Uncover, fluff, and toss in the lime zest and juice.
- Divide the rice among 4 bowls, followed by the chicken and kale, pickles, and plenty of fresh mint, basil, and cilantro. Serve immediately.
Photo by Matt Armendariz / Food Styling by Adam Pearson
This is my favorite recipe from the book! I double it and take for lunches and it holds up amazing to being reheated! It does not last long in my house! Love love love!
Looks and sounds yummy.
My concern is the calories in the coconut rice!
And you add sugar!!
Any way to decrease the high sugar content without deflating taste?
you can omit the sugar and use low-fat coconut milk!
Love love love this recipe! We double the kale and use ground turkey, but other than that it is unchanged. The fresh herbs are a must, especially the mint. This is in our weeknight rotation forever! I keep meaning to take a pic for Instagram but we scarf it down before we remember. Next time, I promise!
I made this and the family loved it so much that I made it again two days later! Second time I used broccoli instead of kale since that’s what I had. So good!
Love this recipe – tried it tonight and got rave reviews from my family. Do you typically use ground white meat chicken or dark meat? Thanks.
either or – but I prefer dark
My husband and I loved this dish so much! Unfortunately, it wasn’t too kid friendly until a little sweet chili sauce was added on top. I plan to bring this in to our meal rotation. I love how versatile it is. You can use any vegetable and you can add other herbs/spices such lemongrass or ginger. I modified a little to make it gluten free by using gluten free tamari. And I used a little fish sauce instead of salt. I also used gluten free Sinto brand gochu jang sauce instead of sambal oelek. Thank you for sharing your recipe!
This. Is. So. Good. Quick, easy and delicious! Trader Joe’s was out of ground chicken AND ground turkey, so made it with ground pork — can’t wait to try it with chicken. Welcome to my regular dinner rotation, larb. 🙂
Oh I need to make this! Love all those fresh herbs!
I loved this as is, but added a couple splashes of fish sauce and it took it over the top. Great dinner and already excited for leftovers tomorrow!
Made these tonight and they were amazing. Such a variety of flavors and textures. I did use half cauliflower rice and half jasmine. My boyfriend said we need to make them for friends!
This was AMAZING!!!! I’ve been wanting to make it since I got the cookbook and decided on Game of Thrones premier night! Today was the happiest day ever! I cannot wait to make this over & over & over!
This recipe is AMAZING! Thank you. I made it with ground turkey and substituted siracha for the sambal oelek. Easy to make and so many flavors!
Should I use sweetened or unsweetened coconut milk?
Made this for dinner tonight with friends. I’m so grateful I doubled it for leftovers! Major hit with friends and even my toddler. Thank you, Gaby!
My family loves this recipe so much that I triple the recipe and usually make it once a week! My 7.5 month old grandson eats it with two hands.
This is a top three recipe for sure! The best part is the coconut rice- amazing. I doubled the kale because it was just so good!
My favorite recipe from Gaby’s book!!!! Obsessed
we absolutely love this for dinner and makes great leftovers for lunch!
This is one of my go-to recipes when I want to make people happy. So many great flavors and if there are ever any leftovers, it reheats well. The pickles are so easy and so delicious. The coconut rice is perfection. Make this!
LOVE the Chicken Larb!!
❤️❤️❤️ this recipe! I make it at least once a week!!!
(I do skip the coconut rice and just make regular rice and add a scoop of coconut oil – like this: https://www.bulletproof.com/recipes/low-carb/low-carb-carbs-hack-your-rice-with-coconut-oil-recipe) also skip the sugar in the chicken, add a bit of coconut oil instead)
Truly top 5 favorite. I always make it when we have guests over. It’s a crowd pleaser and super easy to make. The flavors are unreal! *chefs kiss*
Absolutely the best hands down!!! Now on repeat weekly at our house! Full of flavor (coconut rice is out of this world), and super easy to make for a weeknight meal!
One of my favorites from the cookbook. We also love the version with added mushrooms. This is one of my 2 year old’s favorite meals!!! He usually has 2-3 helpings. We probably make it every month.
My husband’s favorite WGC recipe I’ve made so far! And my 3 and 5 year olds loved it too. My 5 year old is super picky about what kind of rice he likes but this one made the list. Larb bowls have made the regular meal list!
I have made this recipe and the other version with mushrooms…Delicious !
Love the cookbook !
Love, love, love this recipe! It’s in my weekly rotation. So good!
I’ve been meaning to try this recipe since purchasing the cookbook over a year ago and finally got around to it this week. I don’t know what I was waiting for!! Delicious, not too difficult, will definitely become a regular part of the dinner rotation.
One of our favorite Gaby recipes (although I haven’t made one we didnt love)! We make it at least once a week!
How many servings does the recipe make?
Loved the meal, but made small changes to the recipe!
The rice to meat proportion was too much, so I doubled the meat by adding 1 pound of ground pork to the ground chicken.
I also doubled the greens (I used mixed greens vs kale), garlic, onions, and sauce (4 Tbs soy sauce, 4 Tbs chili paste, 2 Tbs brown sugar).
THIS IS DELICIOUS! I made this last night and my husband and I both loved it! I used 2 tbsp of low sodium soy sauce (Trader Joe’s) and 1 tbsp of sambal oelek and made everything per the recipe and this is a keeper! The kale, fresh herbs, and fresh pickles balance the rich flavors of the meat and rice. This was a “feel good” meal; good fuel for a healthy machine. Oh, and my husband who doesn’t eat leftovers gladly took this for lunch today.
Gabby, I’ve visited a lot of blogs, burn yours is the only one I follow. The quality and variety of your recipes is great! Thanks for sharing your wonderful vision!
Quite possibly my favorite What’s Gaby Cooking recipe ever. I make some variation of this recipe almost every week. Easy weeknight meal.
Great, quick, healthy dinner. We love it!!
This recipe is fantastic, so fresh and flavorful with the fresh herbs, and the cucumbers offset some of the spice from the sambal oelek. My only suggestion would be to double the chicken/kale mixture, it’s a huge batch of rice so we usually run out of meat before using all the rice (but the rice is good on its own as well). Need to try the beef and vegetarian versions next!
Is there anything that can replace the kale? Cabbage maybe? Thanks!!!
My husband “doesn’t like” kale, ground chicken or coconut but LOVES this dish and has requested it on multiple occasions. Definitely in the rotation!
We make this weekly, it is one of our all time favorites! Our son is 15months old and he can devour a couple bowls full as well. Make this, you won’t regret it! We often use turkey, delish with either. You can leave out the sugar in the rice and can’t tell a difference. I think the full fat coconut milk is 100% worth it.
Delicious and so easy!
This is my go-to recipe for every occasion! I love love love this recipe and pass it along to anyone who asks for recipe recommendations. I’m also veg so I sub the chicken for tofu and it still tastes absolutely amazing!
First recipe I made from Gaby’s cookbook and it did not disappoint! Have made it probably 5 times since then! Such a good flavor combination! The fresh herbs, pickled cucumber, meat, the coconut rice… omg! Definitely a staple! I’ve made it using coconut aminos and ground turkey and it turns out great!!
Can I use ground turkey meat??? I have extra so thought it would be good.
yes! I do all the time
Seasoned or unseasoned rice vinegar!?
either or! whatever you have on hand
Here you go—the ultimate compliment. From my husband: This is probably the best thing you’ve made! And we’ve been married 40 years. And I cook and bake a lot.
MADE MY MONTH!
So quick and easy!! I love that you can make subs, like I did tonight with arugula instead of kale and it was amazing!! Thank you!
Don’t hate me, but I subbed the rice for cauliflower rice (cooked and measured slightly differently) and it was INSANELY GOOD! I also made the real rice for my son and husband. The chicken and kale were other worldly. My toddler chowed down although I might go lighter on the sambal oelek next time bc he def. got a hot bite at one point and was none too pleased with the chef. I will be making this again and again.
Staple in my house! The balance of flavors makes it one of my very favorite Gaby recipes!
amazing!! I added chopped zucchini, spinach and riced cauliflower for added veggies! Delish! My teenage boys and husband LOVED it. This will be on repeat!!
Made this using brown rice, cooked in a rice cooker; turned out great.
Followed the remaining instructions but went heavier on soy sauce. Next time will sprinkle w/ unsalted, roasted & chopped peanuts. SO, SO good!