Editor’s note: At the Table with the Gabels features tasty recipes and tips from Vanessa Gabel and her daughter, Kaitlyn, of Danville.

Kaitlyn: I’m a huge fan of burritos and tacos and everything Mexican Monday related.

This recipe was super low maintenance and easy to prepare. It barely took any effort. We had precooked meat in the freezer, which made our lives much easier to prepare.

It’s such an easy recipe to make ahead of time and save it in the freezer for later. I love the thought of using this almost like a dip, using chips instead of a tortilla shell. I really love rice, so I’m incredibly happy that it’s the base of the recipe. This burrito bowl is also easy to customize by adding or taking away ingredients like guacamole, lettuce, taco sauce, etc. I can guarantee we will be making this recipe again soon.

Vanessa: If you are like me, you are always looking for new ways to reinvent your favorite dish. This burrito bowl recipe is one you are sure to love. It has all of the delicious ingredients from its rolled counterpart, but without the extra carbohydrates of the tortilla shell.

The recipe also boasts such ease that it will be no problem fitting this meal into a busy weeknight. There are several shortcuts that can be taken to make dinnertime even easier.

I like to batch cook ground meat with diced onions and seasoning, then freeze in individual bags. It only takes a few minutes to reheat it in the microwave when ready. The rice and salsa can also be made ahead to save time. The cilantro lime flavor in the rice is a nice pop of flavor to accentuate the flavors in the salsa. It’s subtle, yet adds an extra dimension. Double the recipe if you love leftovers!


1 lb. ground beef

1 tbsp. seasoning — taco, fajita or Chipotle

Cilantro Lime Rice

2 cups cooked rice

Juice of 1/2 a lime

1/4 cup cilantro, finely chopped

Smoky Salsa

4 plum tomatoes, chopped

1/4 cup red onion, chopped

1/4 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped

Juice of 1/2 a lime

2 tsp. Chipotle seasoning

Heat a skillet over medium-high heat for 3-4 minutes. Add the ground beef and cook, breaking into crumbles until browned, about 8-10 minutes.

Drain any excess grease from the pan and stir in 1 Tbsp of the seasoning.

To make the salsa, combine all the ingredients and set aside.

Cook the rice as directed on the package, then fluff with a fork and add in the lime juice and cilantro.

Top the rice with beef, salsa and any other toppings.

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