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Cuban Bowl

IngredientsBeans, Poultry, Rice, Vegetables
Menu PartEntree
Cuisine TypeLatin

Source: University of Alabama (Tuscaloosa)

After several requests from café guests, this dish was created specifically to provide a healthier option for students. “To make this dish healthy, we cooked the dried beans in water and onions instead of oil; trimmed the fat off the chicken and grilled it; used fresh corn on the cob and grilled it instead of stir-frying in fat; and included a side salad [to which] grilled chicken may be added,” explains James Rose, location manager with Aramark at Bama Dining. To make a vegetarian version, Rose suggests swapping out the chicken for seasoned tofu.


1 lb. dried or canned black beans
3 boneless chicken breasts (or 4 boneless chicken thighs or 1 lb. tofu)
3 tbsp. ground cumin
1/3 cup lime juice
2 tbsp. ground coriander
1 tbsp. chili powder
1 1/3  tbsp. kosher salt
1 cup olive oil
4 ears fresh corn on the cob (or 1 lb. frozen whole kernel corn)
1 lb. julienned green peppers
1 lb. julienned yellow onion
1/2 cup 1/2-in. diced yellow onions
1/2 cup diced fresh cilantro
1 whole fresh jalapeño
1 lb. dry rice
1 cup frozen peas and carrots, thawed


  1. Soak black beans overnight.
  2. Marinate chicken in 2 tablespoons cumin, lime juice, coriander, chili powder, 1/3  tablespoon salt and 1/2 cup olive oil for 30 minutes or overnight.
  3. Submerge whole cobs with husks on in pot of cold water for 15 minutes. Be sure ears are completely covered with water. Remove corn and shake off excess water.
  4. While corn is soaking, preheat grill to medium temperature (350°F).
  5. Place corn on grill, rotating as needed to keep from getting charred too much on one side. As soon as husks pick up dark silhouette of kernels and begin to pull away from tip of ear, remove corn from grill.
  6. Remove husks and silk; rinse under warm running water to remove any excess ash and silk. Cut corn from cob; hold hot for service.
  7. Grill chicken until internal temperature reaches 165°F and juices run clear, about 4 to 6 minutes on each side. Cut into small pieces, 1/2-inch dice; hold for service.
  8. In pan over medium-high heat, sauté julienned peppers and onions in 1/2 cup olive oil. Add 1 tablespoon cumin and sauté until tender, about 3 to 5 minutes. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup cilantro.
  9. Cook soaked black beans in stock pot until tender; add jalapeño, diced onions, 1 tablespoon salt. Cook until tender. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup cilantro.
  10. Cook rice as directed on package; add peas and carrots; hold for service.
  11. To build bowl: Layer rice, corn, black beans and chicken; top with cilantro.


Note: Chicken can be substituted with tofu to make this a vegetarian option. 

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