Meal prep just got a lot more fun with this Halal Cart Style flavorful, marinated chicken over fluffy yellow rice topped with the famous, creamy white sauce – all made from scratch! It’s under 500 calories and got 34 grams of protein! If you’re not into meal prep, try out this single serve version or this vegan version!
Why are Halal Carts Popular in NYC?
Those of us who have visited New York know how popular street food halal carts are. For those of you who don’t know… let me fill you in. Halal carts in New York are like cheesesteaks in Philly. They are a staple in the streets of the Big Apple. Lots of us are daydreaming about the fluffy rice and perfectly seasoned chicken coated in the delicious white sauce just reading this (aka me).
So how did this cuisine become so popular on the streets of NYC? As a matter of fact, halal carts are a more recent addition to the streets of New York. During the latter end of the 20th century, Egyptian immigrants opened these halal carts with the intention of appealing to cab drivers that needed quick meals while on the job. These businesses attracted a much larger audience and BOOM, here we are with halal carts providing other street food vendors with some tough competition!
Marinating the Chicken
This is a key step in the rich medley of flavors for this recipe. Marinating, even for just a little bit, infuses the flavors into the chicken allowing for a deeper taste. This will allow the texture to remain juicy while it cooks. The best part is how simple ingredients will enhance the flavor! You’ll want these key ingredients in your marinade:
- Minced garlic
- Lemon Juice
- Greek Yogurt
- Tons of spices!
Why Meal Planning Works
It’s been a long day at work. You come home to an almost empty fridge, starving, with no idea what you’re gonna have for dinner. You throw some scraps together and call it a night. Or you just order something and have it delivered because you have zero motivation to cook. By spending a little bit of time per week getting organized and planning out your weekly menu you can better manage your nutrition, time, and money because let’s face it, take-out isn’t getting any cheaper.
When meal planning, say that you are “choosing” to do so rather than saying you “have to”. This positive mindset has been proven to provide you with more motivation and you will have a better overall meal-prepping experience. By planning meals, you are choosing to take control of your meals, your health and ingredients going into your body.
This recipe is a scaled up, meal prep version of my original Single Serve Chicken Over Rice! If you haven’t checked out the original recipe, here’s what people have had to say about it :
- “I enjoyed every single bite of the Halal Chicken Cart! It tastes almost like the same thing. Definitely adding to my monthly rotation of meals that I cook! The sauce is so simple, yet there’s an explosion in your mouth. Very easy to make, so everyone should give it a try!” – Sohaib (★★★★★)
- “Such a tasty recipe, whist being so simple to make. The recipe was so easy to follow and it didn’t take too much effort. I make this really often now – especially for lunches – as it’s good/easy to prep beforehand (ie make the marinade the night before).” – Daisy (★★★★★)
- “I made this for my parents and they were so impressed!! It was my first time ever making rice. Keeping this for future meals” – Alana (★★★★★)
- “This is the best version of Halal Chicken over rice! Never thought yellow rice can be this simple yet so delish! This has been a regular in the household since I came across your recipe! Cant wait to try your other recipes.” – Danika
Meal prep just got a lot more fun with this Halal Cart Style flavorful, marinated chicken over fluffy yellow rice topped with the famous, creamy white sauce – all made from scratch!
- 12 oz chicken breast
- 1 tsp olive oil
For the Marinade
- 2 cloves garlic, very finely minced
- Juice of 1 ½ lemon
- 3 tbsp nonfat greek yogurt or plain yogurt
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 2 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp red chili powder
- 1/2 tsp cumin powder
- 1/2 tsp garam masala or allspice
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
For the Yellow Rice
- 1 cup long grain basmati rice (the rice is white until you add turmeric)
- 2 cup water
- 1 tsp butter
- Salt, a sprinkle
- ⅜ tsp turmeric
- ¾ tsp cumin powder
For the White Sauce
- 4 tbsp light mayo
- 8 tbsp nonfat greek yogurt
- 2–3 tsp lemon juice
- ¾ tsp vinegar, optional
- ¾ tsp black pepper
- ⅜ tsp sugar
- ⅜ tsp salt
- Splash of water, as needed
- Marinating the Chicken: Cut the chicken into bite sized pieces. To a bowl, add the chicken and all the marinade ingredients. Mix well and refrigerate for at least 1 hour (2-3 hours is best)
- Making the White Sauce: Mix together all the white sauce ingredients and refrigerate. If the sauce is too thick, keep adding 1-2 tsp of water and mix until it is a more drizzlable consistency.
- Cooking the Rice: To a small pot or saucepan, add the butter and let it melt. Add in the turmeric, salt and cumin. Toast for 30 seconds, then add the rice. Saute for 1-2 minutes or until the rice slightly browns. Add in the water. Bring everything to a boil, then immediately cover with a lid and bring the heat to low. Cook for approximately 15-20 minutes or until all the water is absorbed.
- Cooking the Chicken: While the rice cooks, cook the chicken. Place a small pan on the stove and let it get hot. Add 1 tsp oil and the chicken, then cook for 2-3 minutes on one side and flip. Cook for 2-3 minutes and flip again. Keep repeating until chicken is completely cooked.
- Storing the Meal Prep: First, spread the rice out in a container. Then add the chicken to one side and optionally, chopped lettuce & tomato to the other side. Put the sauce in small containers and store with the rice and chicken. Before eating, heat up the chicken and rice, drizzle over the sauce and enjoy!
Make sure to take a picture and tag me on Instagram @eatsbyramya or DM it to get featured!
- Prep Time: 10
- Cook Time: 20
- Cuisine: Mediterranean