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If you’re a fan of the Sweetgreen crispy rice bowl, you’re going to love this copycat recipe! It includes blackened chicken on top of arugula and warm wild rice with a spicy cashew dressing.

photo of a plate with crispy rice, blackened chicken, cucumbers, red cabbage, shredded carrots, slivered almonds, and spicy cashew dressing

Why You’ll Love This Sweetgreen Crispy Rice Bowl Recipe

This copycat Sweetgreen crispy rice bowl is the real deal. It’s budget-friendly, healthy, and will have your taste buds doing a happy dance. 

With ample amounts of fiber, protein, and healthy fats, this is a balanced lunch or dinner option with all the natural ingredients you love to keep you feeling full for hours. 

If you like to meal prep in advance, this crispy rice bowl recipe is a great option to add to your regular rotation. The flavor combinations are anything but boring and will make it so that you look forward to eating this meal every day for lunch!

overview image of a crispy rice bowl with spicy cashew dressing in the center. Plate is sitting on top of a folded napkin with a fork and decorative limes

Ingredients You’ll Need & How To Make It

There are a few components to this recipe so we’ll break it down by each component and I’ll tell you the shortcuts I took to save some time.

For The Blackened Chicken

  • Boneless Chicken Breasts – this is the main protein source for this bowl, which will help you stay satiated 
  • Olive Oil – known for its anti-inflammatory properties, this oil is packed with monounsaturated fats that can lower inflammation and help you absorb certain fat-soluble vitamins
  • Smoked Paprika
  • Thyme
  • Garlic Powder
  • Onion Powder
  • Black Pepper
  • Oregano
  • Cayenne Pepper
  • Salt – I used sea salt, but traditional iodized salt also works well

Directions To Make The Blackened Chicken:

  1. Mix the dry spices together in a small bowl
  2. Slice each chicken breast lengthwise to make thin sliced chicken
  3. Use ½ tbsp of the olive oil to rub each chicken breast and evenly rub the dry spices onto the chicken breasts
  4. Heat the remaining 1.5 tbsp olive oil in a pan over medium heat
  5. Cook chicken until it is very golden brown (almost black) on each side. Approximately 5 minutes on each side or until cooked through. (Save any leftover oil and seasonings in the pan for the crispy rice)
  6. Remove from heat and cover with a loose aluminum foil tent for 10 minutes

For The Spicy Cashew Dressing

  • Cashew Butter – you could make your own cashew butter in a food processor but I’m all about easy shortcuts so I just use pre-made cashew butter 
  • Rice Vinegar – I used an unseasoned rice vinegar which has no added sugar compared to a seasoned rice vinegar which usually have about 4g of added sugar per tablespoon
  • Maple Syrup
  • Minced Garlic
  • Sesame Oil
  • Lime Juice 
  • Water
  • Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
  • Powdered Ginger
  • Salt

Directions To Make The Spicy Cashew Dressing:

  1. Whisk all ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside

For The Crispy Rice Bowl

  • Raw carrots – I used pre-shredded carrots to save some time on peeling and chopping carrots
  • Red cabbage – red cabbage is pretty easy to chop and shred pretty quickly, however, you can take a shortcut and purchase pre-shredded cabbage if you prefer
  • Cucumber – chop these into whichever shape you prefer
  • Fresh Cilantro – fresh cilantro seriously increases the flavor of any meal in my opinion. I know some people do not like cilantro so just omit it if that’s your preference
  • Roasted Almonds – I skipped the roasting part and simply used slivered almonds, and they worked out great
  • Puffed Rice Cereal – plain old Rice Krispies work well here!
  • Warm Wild Rice – this is different from the original recipe, but I used a 90 second rice packet that was a mix of long grain and wild rice. This is a huge time saver and definitely a worthwhile and easy shortcut to make this recipe go a little faster
  • Arugula – another leafy green such as kale or spinach could work well here also
  • Lime – a fresh lime squeeze gives this a nice, zesty flavor

Directions To Make The Crispy Rice Bowl:

  1. Using the leftover oil and spices in the pan from your blackened chicken, put the puffed rice cereal into the pan over medium heat and stir occasionally until crisp, approximately 3-5 minutes
  2. Combine the remaining ingredients and give it a squeeze of half a lime
  3. Last, add the cooked chicken and the spicy cashew dressing. Enjoy!
blackened chicken, wild rice, crispy rice, veggies, and spicy cashew dressing on a plate. Plate is sitting on top of a napkin with a fork and decorative lime slices.

Variations & Substitutions

  • Substitute the chicken for shrimp or tofu 
  • Use spinach, kale, or another leafy green instead of arugula
  • No cashew butter? Use any type of nut butter you prefer
  • Allergy to tree nuts? Substitute the cashew butter for sunflower seed butter and omit the almonds
  • More flavor? Add a drizzle of soy sauce to the pan before heating up the puffed rice cereal to make crispy rice
  • Want more protein? Substitute the puffed rice cereal for parmesan crisps (great source of protein and calcium!)
  • Add more raw vegetables such as red onion, bell peppers, cherry tomatoes, or broccoli

Other Recipes You’ll Love

Fall Kale Salad With Butternut Squash, Apples, and Pepitas

Easy PCOS Overnight Oats: 4 Different Ways!

High Protein Strawberry Cottage Cheese Smoothie

Triple Berry Oat Tropical Smoothie (Copycat Recipe)

close up photo of a copycat recipe for sweetgreen's crispy rice bowl

Sweetgreen Crispy Rice Bowl (Healthy Copycat Recipe)

This crispy rice bowl is a Sweetgreen copycat version that is bursting with different flavor combinations for a fraction of the price. The spicy cashew dressing adds a zesty flavor that you'll love!
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Course, Salad
Cuisine: American
Keyword: healthy
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 2
Calories: 752kcal


Blackened Chicken

  • 1 chicken breast sliced in half lengthwise
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ¼ tsp paprika
  • ¼ tsp thyme
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder
  • ¼ tsp onion powder
  • tsp oregano
  • tsp black pepper
  • tsp cayenne pepper
  • tsp salt

Spicy Cashew Dressing

  • ¼ cup cashew butter
  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar unseasoned
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp garlic minced
  • 1 tbsp water
  • 1 tbsp crushed red pepper flakes optional; use less crushed red pepper if you prefer less spicy
  • ½ tbsp sesame oil
  • ½ tsp ginger
  • ¼ tsp salt

Crispy Rice Bowl

  • ½ cup puffed rice cereal
  • 1 ½ cups wild rice cooked
  • 5 oz arugula
  • 1 cup carrots shredded
  • 1 cup red cabbage shredded
  • ½ cucumber chopped into 1/2" pieces
  • ¼ bunch cilantro stems removed and roughly chopped
  • ¼ cup slivered almonds
  • ½ lime


Blackened Chicken

  • Mix the dry spices together in a small bowl.
  • Slice the chicken breast in half lengthwise to make 2 thin chicken breasts.
  • Rub the chicken breasts and coat evenly with the dry spices mixture.
  • Heat the olive oil in a pan on medium heat.
  • Cook chicken breasts in the pan until they're very golden brown (almost black) on each side; approximately 5 minutes on each side or until cooked through. (Save any leftover oil and seasonings in the pan for the crispy rice)
  • Remove from heat and cover with a loose aluminum foil tent for approximately 10 minutes.

Spicy Cashew Dressing

  • Whisk all ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside. Add more water if needed to make a thinner consistency.

Crispy Rice Bowl

  • Using the leftover oil and spices in the pan from your blacked chicken, heat on medium heat and add the puffed rice cereal to the pan. Add 1-2 tsp more oil if necessary. Stir occasionally, cooking until the cereal is crisp, approximately 3-5 minutes.
  • Combine the remaining ingredients and give it a squeeze of lime.
  • Last, add the cooked chicken and the spicy cashew dressing. Enjoy!


Calories: 752kcal | Carbohydrates: 69g | Protein: 42g | Fat: 38g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 8g | Monounsaturated Fat: 21g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 72mg | Sodium: 722mg | Potassium: 1659mg | Fiber: 11g | Sugar: 15g | Vitamin A: 14414IU | Vitamin C: 51mg | Calcium: 269mg | Iron: 6mg

Sweetgreen Crispy Rice Bowl (Healthy Copycat Recipe)

Alyssa Pacheco, RD


October 3, 2023

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