Southwestern Brown Rice Bowl

In my opinion, life without guacamole isn’t worth living. It’s quite possibly the worlds best topping and today it’s front and center on this Southwestern Brown Rice Bowl.

Southwestern Brown Rice Bowl from (@whatsgabycookin)

But it’s actually not ALL about the guacamole. The secret ingredient in this bowl is the most insanely delicious green rice you’ll ever make in your entire life. And I’m not lying. This green rice has been making quite a few appearances in our kitchen recently and my new rice cooker has been helping along the way! Once the rice is perfectly cooked, it gets tossed with my cilantro vinaigrette. The vinaigrette turns the mixture bright green and that alone is enough. But then you top it with everything your heart desires. For me that’s a combination of black beans, guacamole, pico de gallo, shredded romaine lettuce, chopped bell peppers and a sprinkling of cheese. (because have you met me? I live for cheese)

It’s one of those perfect meals that you can make and then take for lunches throughout the week or eat over and over and over again for dinner! I never tire of this one. As it stands it’s vegetarian, but you could easily add some cooked salmon or shredded rotisserie chicken if that’s more your speed.

Southwestern Brown Rice Bowl

Yield: Serves 6

Southwestern Brown Rice Bowl


    For the Rice:
  • 2 cups brown rice
  • 1 shallot, roughly chopped
  • 2 cups tightly packed fresh cilantro leaves, tough stems removed
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • For the Toppings:
  • Black Beans
  • 1 recipe Guacamole
  • Pico de Gallo (recipe below)
  • Shredded Romaine Lettuce
  • Chopped yellow or orange bell peppers
  • Freshly Shredded Colby Jack Cheese
  • Additional cilantro for garnish
  • For the Pico de Gallo
  • 1 1/2 pounds ripe tomatoes, cut into 1/4- to 1/2-inch dice
  • Kosher salt
  • 1/2 large white onion, finely diced (about 3/4 cup)
  • 1 to 2 jalapeño chilies, finely diced (seeds and membranes removed for a milder salsa)
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice from 1 lime


  1. Cook the brown rice in a rice cooker according to the package directions
  2. Combine all the ingredients for the cilantro vinaigrette in a high powered blender and blend for 60 seconds until very smooth. Taste and adjust salt and pepper as needed. Fold the vinaigrette into the cooked brown rice.
  3. Divide the rice amongst 4 bowls and top with black beans, guacamole, pico de gallo, shredded lettuce, bell peppers and cheese. Add extra cilantro to garnish if desired.

Photo by Matt Armendariz / Food Styling by Adam Pearson / Recipe by What’s Gaby Cooking

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  1. Wow, that looks like a nice rice cooker. Could you also cook grains such as millet, barley, wheat berries, etc. in the rice cooker? Wouldn’t it be nice if it were a multitasker and you could cook rice, grains and beans or can you?.

  2. This is right up my alley! The green rice is going to be a favorite. Now if I could just get an avocado tree in my garden……

  3. Oh my, I can taste the flavors just my looking at your photos. It’s going to be -20 tonight, how great this would be for dinner tonight.

  4. Going to try these tonight, but in reviewing the recipe and making my shopping list, I’m surprised there’s no mention of LIME, except in the pico… but maybe that’s enough? I have deep-seated issues with tomatoes, so I usually skip pico or salsa, so I’ll probably just squeeze a little lime juice on my rice. Either way, can’t wait to give it a whirl!

  5. Hi Gabi, I’ve been thinking about getting a rice cooker. Which one do you have? We’ve been eating lots more grains and I’m tired of cleaning up the pots and pans from cooking on the stove. 😉

  6. Is it two cups of uncooked brown rice or two cups of cooked brown rice? That green rice looks so amazing and I don’t want to get the ratios off when we make it tomorrow night!

    1. uncooked brown rice – so once you cook it it’s much more than 2 cups and it’s great as leftovers if there is extra!

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