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These chili chicken and shrimp tortilla bowls with cilantro slaw and pico de gallo are a great way to pull a meal together fast, and still have it bursting with flavour and fresh ingredients! A total life saver on my busy sports nights!
I’ve already learned that my summer is going to be a hectic one. Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday nights are lost to the kids sports, and while take out worked that first week, I quickly realized I was going to have to come up with meals I can whip up fast for everyone.
Walking down the grocery aisles I’d seen these OLD EL PASO tortilla bowls at Loblaws for a few weeks now, and they’d peeked my interest. With little ones in the house, traditional tacos always seemed like a disaster waiting to happen. I’ve made fajitas a few times, but the kids struggle to keep the wraps wrapped, and that’s not a mess I want to deal with on an already hectic night.
Tortilla bowls though, those seemed like such a great idea! The kids could pick it up and try eating it like a taco, but if that didn’t work out, all I had to do was hand them a fork. I was willing to give it a shot (spoiler alert, they’re AMAZING). They have mini sizes too, which I also bought, and they were even easy enough for Sophie to eat (she’s 2.5).
Bo isn’t a big taco guy, at least not the standard fare. If it’s ground beef and bean paste, he’s got no interest. Everyone in this house LOVES chicken and shrimp though. I like my Mexican inspired my meals to be bursting with fresh flavour, but these had to be fast too, I needed everything done in 30 minutes or less, so there couldn’t be a lot of complicated prep work.
First up was the bottom layer of my OLD EL PASO tortilla bowl – some cilantro slaw. I just whisked together some mayo, vinegar, garlic, jalapeños, honey, and lime juice, then tossed it up with a bag of PC brand shredded cabbage mix and a handful of chopped cilantro. 5 Minutes from start to finish and this was ready to go. Seriously, FIVE MINUTES.
Next up it was time to make the pico de gallo. This was the most prep that I had all meal, and it was less than ten minutes. Just dice up a couple of seeded tomatoes (to seed them, just cut your tomatoes in half, then use your thumb to push the seeds out into the sink, it keeps your mix less runny), an onion, and some jalapeños. Toss it with some salt, garlic, lime juice, and cilantro, and you’re done. Notice how we’re pulling lime juice and cilantro through both? That means you only have to prep it once!
So, we’re at the half way point now, 15 minutes to go, and we’re up to the meat. This is the best part, seriously, because it’s SO easy and fast. I worked in two pans at the same time, but you could totally do it in one, and just add the shrimp when the chicken was half way done. Cut two chicken breasts up into bite size pieces. Put them in a pan with some oil, chili powder, and salt. Cook til they’re done. Do the same with the shrimp. 10 minutes, that’s all it takes to get it all prepped and cooked. This is when the fun happens – you get to fill the bowls. This is AWESOME for kids, because when they get to make their own dinner at the table, they are A LOT more likely to eat it!.
From start to finish I was only 25 minutes, and I had overflowing OLD EL PASO tortilla bowls absolutely jammed with a creamy and tangy cilantro slaw, tender bites of chili chicken and shrimp, and fresh bursts of pico de gallo. The kids went CRAZY for them, devouring the bowls from top to bottom, left to right, and there was NO MESS!!! Hallelujah! These bowls are my new best friend in the kitchen, and I can’t wait to experiment with more meals in them, like my pork carnitas, and I’m thinking brushing the inside with butter, sprinkling on some cinnamon sugar, then toasting the bowls before filling with some strawberries and cream might just be one of the best desserts of the summer.