Honey Bourbon Chicken Bowls are made with simple ingredients and require very little prep. Fresh Spring veggies and fluffy brown rice compliment the sweet and sticky bourbon-glazed chicken perfectly.
Why have I never cooked with alcohol before?
Ok.. the answer to that question is actually pretty simple.. I’m TERRIFIED of starting a kitchen fire. When alcohol is involved in a recipe I picture those onion volcanoes at hibachi grills that erupt into an impressive display of fiery flames with a splash of vodka.
In case you haven’t already surmised.. my personality is definitely to ere on the side of caution. Anyone who has spent time with me in real life can vouch for the fact that I’m a bit prone to finding myself in ridiculous predicaments (i.e. ER for screw stuck up Cam’s nose, freak car accident caused by a trailer full of sheep, waking Coop from his nap to find him snacking on his dirty diaper) that more often than not end in disaster. At least life stays interesting.
Soo… through experience I have reached a level of self awareness. Me + Cooking + Alcohol = Bad Idea.
So imagine my disappointment when I was hit with a craving for bourbon chicken (the kind I used to get at the mall food court before I had any knowledge or concern for the ingredients used to prepare my food) and I found out that to create authentic Bourbon chicken… actual bourbon is in fact required?.
I say all this so that you understand… this bourbon chicken is baked not fried. Not out of dietary concerns (although it’s a nice perk) but out of a deep level of self-awareness and concern for the safety of my family and home???.
However, kitchen fires aside.. I ASSURE you that you will not be complaining. This chicken is moist, flavorful and the perfect combination of sticky and sweet. The fresh cabbage and carrots add a bit of crunch while the rice creates the perfect sponge to soak up all of that delightful garlicky bourbon sauce!
Time Saving Tips and Tricks:
Prep: This is a recipe where prep is unfortunately not optional. In order for the chicken to soak up all that bourbony glaze goodness it really needs to marinate overnight. Don’t skimp on this! In addition to marinating the chicken you could definitely go ahead and chop the veggies and even go ahead and sauté them if desired.
Make Ahead: Because the light is best at my house from about 10:00-1:00 these bowls (which I served for dinner) were done REALLY early. I fully assembled them, covered them with plastic wrap and popped them in the fridge. I ate mine cold (and found it to be delightful) while Joe microwaved his for about 1 minute. Both methods were perfection. I would estimate that these bowls could be stored for up to 3 days in the refrigerator.
Freezer: If you want to double this recipe and save some for later.. follow the directions for marinating the chicken, but instead of refrigerating overnight .. freeze it. Just place all the ingredients in a freezer safe labeled Ziplock bag. The night before you need it, remove it from the freezer and allow it to thaw/marinate in the fridge overnight. Follow recipe as written.
- 4Chicken Breasts
- ½ cup soy sauce
- ¼ cup olive oil + 1 TBS for cooking veggies
- ¼ cup cider vinegar
- ¼ cup bourbon
- 2 TBS apple juice
- ¼ cup honey
- 1 TBS ginger, minced
- 4 garlic cloves, smashed
- ½ cup sliced green onions + extra for garnish
- ½ green cabbage, thinly sliced
- 4 carrots, thinly sliced
- 2 cups basmati rice, cooked according to package directions
- Pat chicken breasts dry and season with salt and pepper.
- In a shallow baking dish, combine soy sauce, ¼ cup of olive oil, cider vinegar, bourbon, apple juice, honey, ginger, garlic and sliced onions. Whisk ingredients together until fully combined. Add chicken. Use a spoon to pour sauce over the tops of the chicken so that it is completely coated. Cover dish with plastic wrap and allow chicken to marinate overnight. Flip the chicken 1x during the marinating process.
- TO PREPARE:
- Heat oven to 350 degrees. Bake chicken for 30-35 minutes or until the center is no longer pink. Once chicken is completely cooked through, set your oven to broil. Broil chicken for about 3 minutes or until a sticky golden crust forms.
- In a large skillet over medium heat olive oil. Add cabbage and carrots and cook until desired texture is obtained. I like them to keep a bit of their crunchiness (about 8 minutes).
- ASSEMBLY: Place 1 cup of rice, ¼ of the cooked veggies and ¼ of the chicken into each of 4 bowls. Top each bowl with the remaining sauce from the chicken. Sprinkle with green onions. Enjoy!
- If you really don’t want to use bourbon you can sub apple juice or pineapple juice. Full disclosure.. I enjoyed the bourbon version best. It had more flavor.
- To slice the carrots super thin I used a mandolin. You can do it by hand, but the mandolin made this otherwise tedious task super simple.
- In the pictures, I sliced the chicken, and… that’s how we ate it the first night. However, I diced the remaining chicken and allowed it to soak in the sauce until we ate it for lunch the next day and it was REALLY good. I recommend this method!
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