This Buffalo Chicken and Broccoli Bowl is fast, easy and flavorful. Chicken and broccoli in a buffalo sauce, served over cauliflower rice makes a gluten-free, low carb, high protein, paleo and whole 30 friendly meal!
Hey, hey, it’s Friday! And a three-day weekend for some people. Mr. Briar and I were talking about going on a trip this weekend, and then being the complete slackers that we are, completely failed to plan anything. Therefore, no plans this weekend. What about you?
So, as I have mentioned one or two or 47 times, one of the ways I trick myself into eating more veggies is by replacing a carby thing with a vegetable. Like replacing pasta with zoodles or spaghetti squash, or eggplant. Recently I discovered cauliflower rice, and it is pretty cool. I mean, as cool as cauliflower can be. I know cauliflower has a reputation for being kind of boring, but just look at this gorgeous thing right here. I mean, how can you call that boring?
Yeah, I get excited about food, even cauliflower. I was so enamored with this cauliflower that I had to put it on instagram and yell at everybody about how beautiful it was. I say was, because after this guy got his photo shoot, it turned into cauliflower rice. What is cauliflower rice, you may ask? Well, it isn’t actually rice at all. It’s cauliflower. That looks like rice. Aren’t you glad I explained that to you?
Now, don’t get me wrong, I love rice and I don’t plan on ever giving it up. But I like that I can use this trick to get more veggies in my life. Plus if you are counting calories you get way more bang for your buck, so to speak. If you want to skip the cauliflower rice and serve this Buffalo Chicken and Broccoli Bowl with regular rice, just scroll down below for the rest of the recipe. I have served it with both regular rice and cauliflower rice and it is great both ways
.A few tricks I learned that make the cauliflower rice turn out a little better. When cutting the cauliflower into florets, be sure to cut them into uniform pieces and remove any large chunks of the stem, as it does not break down as well. I use my food processor to break down the florets into “rice”. It works better if you do it in two batches, because if the food processor bowl is too full it will not break them down as evenly and you will get some really big chunks and some parts that are pulverized into mush. If it is overprocessed you will have something more like cauliflower mash, which is not terrible, but it doesn’t have the consistency of rice. I found that working in two batches and pulsing my food processor about 20 times gave me the texture I was looking for. Basically, you want the pieces to be about the same size as rice.
Also, be sure not to overcook it, or it will be a little mushy. To cook, heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a skillet or saute pan over medium heat. Add the cauliflower rice, season with salt and pepper and saute 5-8 minutes, until it reaches your desired tenderness. And good news! You can freeze cauliflower rice and reheat it in a skillet. That is, if you have any leftover, which I almost never do.
This Buffalo Chicken and Broccoli Bowl is a great weeknight meal because it is quick, easy and healthy.
Now this Buffalo Chicken and Broccoli Bowl – this is a great weeknight meal because it is really quick and easy, plus you can check all the boxes for a healthy meal: Low Carb! High Protein! Full of Veggies! Gluten Free! Paleo! Whole 30! (I’m not paleo or whole 30, but it does fit these diets if you sub coconut oil or ghee for the butter). I use boneless, skinless chicken thighs because that is what I always keep on hand. Chicken thighs are the best because they taste better and are harder to overcook. Thighs >breasts, just saying.
Cut the chicken into bite sized pieces and cook in a saute pan over medium high heat, 4-5 minutes per side, until nicely browned and cooked though. When the chicken is no longer pink, add the broccoli, give it a quick stir and cover. This will allow the broccoli to steam. Allow to steam until florets are tender and still bright green. Depending on how large the broccoli florets are, it should take 5-10 minutes.
I prefer my broccoli to be a little underdone, still slightly crisp and bright green. Overcooked broccoli is the worst, amirite? When the broccoli is done, just pour on the buffalo sauce, which is a simple mixture of hot sauce and butter. Was anyone else super surprised when they found out how easy buffalo sauce is to make? Like, you melt butter with hot sauce and then you are done. Also, I really like Frank’s Red Hot for the hot sauce. I use the original. It is the perfect flavor, not too spicy but just spicy enough.
Toss everything together to get it fully coated in the sauce, then serve right away over the rice, cauliflower or regular. So fast, so easy, so good. The cauliflower rice can be a little on the bland side, so I like to let it soak up the some of the buffalo sauce to give it a punchy flavor. I use about a quarter cup of hot sauce and two tablespoons of butter, but if you like things saucier you can use more hot sauce.
Oh yeah, I really wanted to make this a one pot meal, because less dishes is always a good thing. That was why I steamed the broccoli in the same pan with the chicken. Of course, the rice will take up another pan, so I’m not calling this one pot. But I saved you one pan to wash at least. I got your back.
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Buffalo Chicken and Broccoli Bowls
For The Cauliflower Rice:
- 1 head cauliflower
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
For The Buffalo Chicken and Broccoli:
- 1 pound boneless skinless chicken thigh cut into bite sized pieces
- about 1 pound of broccoli cut into small to medium florets* (I used two large crowns)
- 1 tablespoon oil for the pan, optional**
- 1/4 cup hot sauce I used Frank's Red Hot***
- 2 tablespoons butter****
To Make The Cauliflower Rice:
- Cut cauliflower into medium to small sized florets, removing the green leaves and any tough stem.
- Working in batches, place florets into the food processor and don't fill the bowl more than halfway. Pulse until the cauliflower resembles grains of rice, about 20 pulses. Try not to over process or you will have cauliflower mash!
- Heat a skillet or sauté pan over medium heat with olive oil. Add cauliflower and season with salt and pepper. Sauté until tender 5-8 minutes.
To Make The Buffalo Chicken and Broccoli:
- Heat a skillet or sauté pan that has a lid over medium high heat. Add oil if using, and when hot add chicken. Season with just a little salt. allow to cook on one side until browned, then turn and brown the other side. Cook until no longer pink, 4-5 minutes per side.
- When chicken is cooked, add broccoli to the pan and cover. Allow to steam until tender 5 -10 minutes. You can give the pan a stir a few times if you want to keep the chicken from browning too much. Broccoli is done when easily pierced with a knife and still bright green.
- Meanwhile, prepare the buffalo sauce. Melt 2 tablespoons of butter with the hot sauce and whisk to combine.
- Pour the sauce over the chicken and broccoli, toss to coat everything in the sauce.
- Serve over cauliflower rice or regular rice.
**If using a pan that is not non-stick, I would suggest using a little oil when cooking the chicken. Otherwise it may stick to the pan.
***If you prefer more sauce, just increase the amount of hot sauce you use.This amount makes enough to fully coat everything but doesn't leave much extra sauce.
****If paleo or whole 30, use coconut oil or ghee instead of butter
So what are you doing this weekend? Did you do a better job of planning than I did?
Tools I used for this recipe:
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you purchase the items I recommend through the links I provide, I get a small commission. For more info, please see my disclosure policy. Thanks for supporting Fox and Briar!
mobasir hassan says
You have described the recipe so nicely that really helped me. And I truly appreciate for that. Looking forward for more of such delicious recipes in future too.
Jodi v. says
I’m not a fan of buffalo sauce. But my little sister practically drinks it. There’s only about 5 other things she’ll eat. When she had her baby, I made a few dinners for her and her husband (including this recipe) with plenty of thanks each time. About a year later when we were discussing favorite dishes, she included, “that buffalo broccoli and chicken you made us that one time.” Thanks for the winning recipe. Makes me feel like a good sister ❤️
Aww, yay! I’m so happy to hear that.
Tripled the sauce, added a little corn starch to thicken, topped with unsalted peanuts, and green onions. Family loved it!
This is a great healthy midweek meal and I loved the kick of spice! Mine didn’t look as lovely as yours but the flavours were there and that’s the main thing!
Hi Lynette – Yay, I’m so happy that you enjoyed it!
HEIDI A DEVRIES says
Such a good Recipe! My husband and I loved it. I had to use it up Cauliflower and broccoli, perfect
Hi Heidi, I’m so glad you loved it!
Made This for dinner tonight and it was amazing. I made it with white rice and doubled the sauce so I could have plenty to spread on top of the rice. It was so easy to make and the Chicken thighs were perfect. I will be adding this to the rotation. Thanks for the recipe!
I am so happy you loved it Madeline!
Sarah Sinsel says
i liked the chicken thighs and broccoli with buffalo sauce. It made plain old broccoli much more exciting. I didn’t make the cauliflower rice so I can’t speak to that. I ate some with whole wheat pasta and some plain. Will likely make this again.
Hi Sarah, I’m so happy to hear that you enjoyed it! Thanks so much for letting me know!
Tre' Ford says
what is the nutritional value of this dish? really want to know!
Hi Tre’Ford! I currently don’t have nutritional information, but many readers use one of the free online calorie calculators, such as my fitness pal. That way you can customize it to exactly the ingredients you use.
I made this exactly as described fo dinner tonight and it was crazy good! I was skeptical about cauliflower rice, and about buffalo wing sauce as a stir fry. This dish was super!! Its an absolute win.
Yay Traci! That makes me so happy to hear! I’m so glad you loved it!
Hello! Looks great! Any thoughts on making it ahead and reheating later? I’m always on the look out for things I can prep over the weekend and warm up throughout the week, but I’m not sure about the cauliflower rice….
I have made it ahead and served it the next day and it was just fine. I think it would be good for a few days in the fridge, and also cauliflower rice freezes really well if you wanted to keep it longer. I hope you enjoy it!
This looks awesome and I would love to add it to my weekly menu but I’m on a specific carb, protein, fat and calorie intake. Do you know what the nutritional value per serving is?
Hi Becky! Right now I don’t have the ability to offer nutritional info. However, many readers find that there are several online options where you can enter the ingredients and it will tell you the nutirtional information. Some people use My Fitness Pal or Lose it! That is great because then you can tailor the recipe to exactly how you make it. I hope that helps!
Looks fab! However, on my iPad there is a social media strip along the left side of the page. Is that just on my iPad? It blocks your blog and recipes.
Hi Robin! So sorry about that, it only does that on the iPad for some reason. I will try to figure out if I can fix it. Thanks for your feedback!
Janice McMahon says
I’ve been looking for recipes. Can make in one pan that call for lots of veggies and less meat. This one can be tailored perfectly for my needs. I like to look in the fridge and pull out all the veggies I want to use up like asperagus, bell peppers of any color, zucchini, etc. just for week nights I might just add cauliflower pieces along with the other vegetables to save a pan and the processor step. I like the cauliflower rice idea for company. Can’t wait to try this. I also might try pushing ingredients in the pan to one side and mixing the butter and hot sauce together on one side before mixing it in with the chicken and veg.
That sounds wonderful Janice! I hope you love the recipe!
I was floundering for a dinner plan so I checked one of my favorite blogs~~foxandbriar!
I have the ingredients–mostly–I’ll have to go with brown rice tonight, yet I’m totally stoked to try the cauliflower rice VERY soon!!
I also love the pic of you pouring the buffalo sauce! So tantlizing~?
Your other pics are very eye-catching & gave me that extra push to go & rattle those pots & pans~???❤️
Yay! I hope you loved it!
Tez @ Chile and Salt says
I`m LOVING this post Maghan! So full of flavor with a punch from the Buffalo sauce! Going on my to make soon list. Thanks for the great recipe!
Thanks so much Tez!
This is so great, I had cauliflower rice quite a few times and I can totally recommend it. Cauliflower crust as well, I haven’t made it for pizza, just for wraps which I filled with mushrooms and cheese and baked a little bit longer, amazing, unfortunately not very photogenic. And all this talk about Harry Potter makes me want to start a film marathon as well… 🙂
Those cauliflower wraps sounds really good Adina, I would love to try that! You should post the recipe even if they aren’t beautiful – it’s whats on the inside that counts! 🙂
Claudia | The Brick Kitchen says
I love everything about this post Meghan! Living outside of college & home for the first time next week, so have to get used to making lots of budget friendly, easy and healthy recipes – and this looks like exactly what I need haha. Have wanted to make cauliflower rice for ages but never really managed to do it, so thank you for all the tips to get it right the first time too! x
Thank you Claudia, it is great that you are on the lookout for easy and healthy recipes, that is such a great thing for college students and people living on their own for the first time. This would definitely be a step up from what I was eating in college! I think I lived on cereal and mac and cheese for at least a year or two 🙂 It took me awhile to finally try cauliflower rice, but now that I have I realize it is pretty easy and tasty too!
Rachel @the dessert chronicles says
I’ve been really bored with my usual dinner ideas lately, so I am very excited to give this recipe a try! This looks like the perfect warm and comforting meal when the wind is insane outside!
Thank you Rachel! I get bored with my dinners really easily too, it is always good to change it up! Stay warm!
Nicole @ Young, Broke and Hungry says
I still haven’t tried cauliflower rice yet, but it looks like such a healthy option, and delicious paired with the buffalo chicken and broccoli.
Thank you Nicole! I really like it, although I don’t think it is going to be replacing rice completely anytime soon 🙂
Lauren Gaskill | Making Life Sweet says
I’m all about cutting back on the amount of dishes to clean! And this dish — you had me at buffalo!! <3 <3 <3 Hope you had a great weekend Meghan!
Thanks Lauren! Fewer dishes is a huge win in my book!
I am SO excited to try this, especially the cauliflower rice — and just hand me a big spoon for that Buffalo sauce 🙂
My Dish is Bomb says
I’ve never tried cauliflower rice! Unfortunately I don’t have a food processor, so I’d probably end up grating it on a box grater. This is such a good way to eat more veggies. I’m embarrassed to admit that my veggie eating has become worse as I’ve aged! The buffalo chicken sounds amazing too. My weekend was packed with work + job interviews so I’m hoping for things to relax a little more down the road!!
Thanks Katy! I’m sure it is easier with a food processor, but using a box grater always goes faster than I expect, so it probably would be just fine to use that. But add a food processor to your next birthday/christmas wish list! I asked for one for Christmas one year like any normal mid twenty something would do (?) – I have had it for at least 5 years now, and I seriously use it a few times a week. My veggies eating is terrible! That is why I have to trick myself into eating more veggies with things like this 🙂
Jennifer @ Show Me the Yummy says
Um. I love this. Buffalo flavored anything and I’m on board. 🙂
Thank you Jennifer!
Natasha @ Salt and Lavender says
This looks so simple and delicious and pretty healthy, actually. I don’t eat enough broccoli. I really should get on that 😉
Thanks Natasha! I love broccoli but I haven’t been eating enough of it recently, so I’m working on that 🙂
Cheyanne @ No Spoon Necessary says
I am obsessed with cauliflower in general, but especially cauliflower rice, I always have a container of it in my fridge. I also happen to be obsessed with Frank… but don’t tell my husband. So these bowls are all sorts of amazing, Meghan! I saw ’em over the weekend on IG, but blonde me didn’t realize you had the recipe up on the blog! *doh* buffalo chicken, broccoli and cauliflower rice sounds just deeee-lish! Wish we were neighbors so I could invite myself over. Guess I’ll have to stop being lazy and whip this together in my own kitchen! 🙂 Cheers, doll!
P.s. No 3 day weekend for us. Sucks. Hope you are enjoying y’alls day off! xo
Thanks Cheyanne! I am loving the cauliflower rice these days. I wish we could have a big dinner party, it would be epic 🙂
Ashlyn ~ Dollop of Yum says
I have yet to try cauliflower rice but it looks amazing! Definitely going to be trying it soon! I love how you used buffalo sauce too. 🙂
It took me awhile to try it, but I really like it! Thanks Ashlyn!
Rachel @ Simple Seasonal says
This sounds amazing, and you captured such a fabulous pour shot! This weekend my husband and I failed to make plans too, so we decided to have a Harry Potter marathon…. Those movies are so long and I’m thinking tonight going to be a late one!
That is awesome Rachel! I started an HP marathon a few weeks ago, I am nearing the end and not ready for it. And thanks for the pour shot compliment! I got a tripod for Christmas, so I am working on getting used to it and exploring all the new things I can do.
Jess @ Sweetest Menu says
I have never tried cauliflower rice yet but it is such a neat trick to get your calories and carbs down! Meanwhile that buffalo chicken has my name on it. Yum!
Thanks Jess! I only tried it recently and I really like it! I wouldn’t use it instead of regular rice all the time, but sometimes when I want more veggies and less carbs it is a winner!
I love everything about these bowls! So delicious and healthy! Love the buffalo chicken and cauliflower rice! I can’t wait to try this!
Thanks so much Kelly!
Melanie @ Melanie Cooks says
I also prefer chicken thighs to chicken breasts, as it’s nearly impossible to overcook the thighs, but the breast gets so dry so quickly! And I also hate overcooked broccoli – looks like we have a lot of things in common 🙂 I love buffalo chicken, and this stir-fry sounds so tasty and healthy – that’s a winner!
Thank you Melanie! I know, I hate how easy it is to dry out chicken breasts, the thighs are so much better!
Sherri @ Watch Learn Eat says
I seriously need to make this! I am a self-professed Buffalo sauce addict! I even put it on hard boiled eggs! Loving this recipe! 🙂 Looks amazing!
Thanks so much Sherri! I think if you love buffalo sauce then you will love it!
Kathy @ Beyond the Chicken Coop says
I’m loving this recipe. I need to try the cauliflower rice. I’m a little nervous, but I won’t know if I love it unless I try it!
I was really nervous to try it too! But it is pretty unoffensive. It is a bit more bland than rice, so as long as you have something flavorful to go with it it is fine! Thanks so much Kathy!
Lisa @ Chocolate Meets Strawberry says
This looks yumlicious, and so nutritious! (Rhyme completely unintentional at first but now I’m rolling with it!) Can you believe I STILL haven’t tried cauliflower rice, but it keeps popping up all over the place so I think that means I really should! I’m also really keen to try making a cauliflower pizza. Daniel loves carby goodness but he has has majorly cut down on wheat and other refined carbs lately, so I will need to make lots of cauliflower goodies to satisfy his cravings! In the meantime we are sticking to brown rice, sweet potatoes and lots of broccoli as sides to keep us full, and it seems to be working for now. Oh and it’s really interesting that you prefer chicken thighs to breasts, Meghan, because I only ever use breasts – not for any particular reason, though. I will need to try buying some thighs and see if I am converted!! I’m intrigued about what the difference is. As for the weekend plans, I can totally relate. We always make determined plans to go to the beach but end up hanging around the house all weekend, baking (well, me only for this one), reading and eating! Suits me just fine though, particularly the eating part 😛 This weekend so far we actually have been out to a big second-hand booksale in the city, and I bought a ton of cheap cookbooks. Yay for weekends 😀
I still haven’t tried the cauliflower pizza, put I want to! I love to eat brown rice and sweet potatoes too, but sometimes I like to sub a veg for a carb. I go crazy if we hang around the house too many weekends in a row, but I like to have those lazy weekends now and then, they are necessary to recharge. Thanks Lisa!
Tracy | Baking Mischief says
I feel so betrayed right now. I had no idea that’s all buffalo sauce was. Why have I been buying it separately all these years??
This looks so good. I’ve been meaning to work up the courage to try cauliflower rice for a while. I think you’ve convinced me!
Haha, right? So easy! It took me awhile to come around to the cauliflower rice idea, but it is actually so good! Thanks Tracy!
Kathi @ laughing spatulata says
I’m on day 14 of my Whole30 and I think you just made my weekend a whole lot better!
Oh yay Kathi! I’m so glad to hear that. And congrats on making it halfway through your whole 30! That is not a challenge that I have take on yet, so I applaud you. And I would love to hear about it if you make this!
I’ll bet this dish packs a punch of flavor! I love how colorful the bowl is … enough to make this non spicy girl want to dig in.
Thank you so much Noel! I don’t like things toooo spicy either, and I don’t find this spicy at all! It does have just a hint of heat, but nothing crazy. Thanks so much for stopping by!
I love the way you lay the directions out so easily! And your photos!! Those colors are amazing~~
Thank you!! <3