Yakitori chicken and brown rice bowl

Yakitori chicken and brown rice bowl

I love eating at any time of the day but if I had to rate meals in order of preference, breakfast would be number one, closely followed by dinner and lunch would be trailing behind. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy lunch, but mid-week it can be a little uninspiring. I’m currently on materity leave so I have the luxury of preparing/cooking lunch fresh every day but I always resort to a ham, pear and cheese toastie or last night’s left overs. So, in the interest of fairness, I have decided to put a little more energy into lunch and see if it has the potential to move up the pecking order.

This week I made a japanese inspired rice bowl. The list of ingredients may look long but everything is quick and easy to prepare, you likely have all the main ingredients in your cupboard and things like the pickles and sweet potato can be prepared in advance. The other great thing about rice bowls is everything is interchangeable. If you don’t eat chicken, add fish or tofu. If you don’t have rainbow chard, use any other green vegetable. As long as it has an egg and some kewpie on top, I guarantee it’ll taste delicious.

For the kid’s dinner, I dished up the brown rice with chicken, sweet potato, edamame and some avocado. With a little bit of soy and kewpie, it was a winner.

Yakitori chicken and brown rice bowl

2 chicken thigh fillets (or you could use breast)

Yakitori sauce

This sauce recipe is from the Tokyo cookbook

100ml mirin

100ml soy sauce

1 tbs sugar

1 tbs oyster sauce

Rainbow chard

4 large rainbow chard stalks

2 cloves of garlic

Juice of half a lemon

Pickled beetroot

1 beetroot, grated

1/4 cup rice wine vinegar

1/3 cup water

1 tsp salt

1 tsp sugar

For the bowl

2 cups cooked brown rice

Sesame oil

1/2 a sweet potato, cut into wedges

A couple of handfuls of baby spinach

A couple of handfuls of frozen edamame

2-4 eggs, fried or poached

Pickled ginger and kewpie mayonnaise to serve

To pickle the beetroot, bring water to the boil and add salt and sugar. Stir until dissolved. Add rice wine vinegar and when cool, pour over beetroot. I did this in a glass jar. Leave to pickle.

Heat oil in a frypan over medium heat and add the rainbow chard and garlic. Saute gently until soft. This will take about 10 minutes. Squeeze over the juice of half a lemon. Set aside.

Meanwhile, microwave the sweet potato for 6 minutes or until soft. Drizzle sesame oil in a frypan (I used the same one as I used for the rainbow chard) and cook until golden and crispy on the outside.

Put a couple of handfuls of frozen edamame in lightly salted boiling water for 5 minutes or until cooked. Drain, remove from pods and set aside.

For the yakitori chicken, place all yakitori sauce ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat.  Let it simmer gently until the sauce has reduced a little. Coat chicken thigh fillets with a little oil and place on a hot BBQ or grill pan. As you turn the chicken, brush it with the yakitori sauce and continue to do this until chicken is cooked. Remove from heat and slice up.

To serve, place all ingredients in a bowl; brown rice, pickled beetroot, baby spinach, edamame, sweet potato, rainbow chard, chicken and an egg.  Sprinkle over some sesame seeds and a drizzle of kewpie mayo. Serve with some fresh ginger.

Serves 2 adults and 2 kids

If you like rice bowls, check out this Mexican version or the BBQ salmon bowl.



  1. Andrea Paganin
    July 25, 2017 / 1:54 pm

    this dish was sooo delicious Jo.. We did it with fish fillets and the boys loved it..
    Just wondering if you can use the left over Yakitori as a sauce or would it be too strong. We didn’t add egg so we needed a little more sauce.

    Loving your blog- THANK YOU!!

    • Jo Rix
      July 25, 2017 / 4:14 pm

      Hi Ange, so glad you loved this dish. I think the yakitori sauce on it’s own would be a bit strong. It’s mainly used for grilled meats. For a bit more sauce though, you can combine equal parts mirin and soy and stir this through the cooked rice (this sauce doesn’t need to be cooked). Or with fish, you could easily opt for a sour cream/yoghurt & lime dressing and do away with the yakitori altogether??

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