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Meatless Mexican Bowl

It’s been awhile since I have done a Dinner Bar, but when I announced it to my kids last night, they were all excited, which tells me this continues to be a positive approach to feeding, no matter the age. It also helps me be a happier cook!

If you are new and not sure about the Dinner Bar, be sure to read about the rationale behind it.

In a nutshell, this approach gives you leadership with meal components, but lets your child decide how to put it all together.

meatless mexican bowl

While a Meatless Mexican Bowl isn’t a new concept by any stretch, it is to my family. So let’s dig in!

You will need:

2 cups of cooked rice of your choice (I used white rice)

Pinto beans (recipe below)

Chopped avocado

Chopped tomato

Shredded lettuce or Napa cabbage (I used a combo of both)

Shredded cheese


Sour cream (optional)

Recipe for Pinto Beans (adapted from Mom’s Kitchen Handbook)

1# dried pinto beans

7 ½ cups of water

2 tablespoons Kosher salt

1 tablespoon black pepper

1 tablespoon red pepper flakes (for a mild hint of spice, use 1 teaspoon)

Put all ingredients in a crock pot; cook on low for 7-8 hours.


As with all Dinner Bars, put out the ingredients in bowls or plates and let your child build his own concoction! I added a side of fruit to this meal, and we opted for iced water for a drink.

Care-bear and Meerose took the full complement of ingredients; My Little Man opted for rice and avocado with lots of fruit on the side; Gee was sick so she had cereal. I loved it and will definitely make it again!!

What’s your favorite dinner bar idea?

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  1. I do this only we use tortilla wraps to make our own burritos. LIke homemade Chipotle:) Always a crowd pleaser. I am a vegetarian but I include what I call fajita style chicken for my family members. We even had a lunch with a bunhc of Mom-friends and it was fun.
    Sharing this!

    1. That’s a great idea Anna! My 13 year old asked for this two more times last week! I will definitely include in the rotation.