Chicken Power Bowls with Crispy Baked Garbanzo Beans


Gluten-free Chicken Power Bowls with Crispy Baked Garbanzo Beans will keep you full for hours!

 Chicken Power Bowls with Crispy Baked Garbanzo Beans |

Hi. I’m here (just wrote “hear”…how embarrassing) to break you out of your dinner rut! As a food blogger, many people think I have elaborate meals prepared for Ben and myself every night of the week but, hahaha. Haha. Ha. No! No, I do not. I’m just like any busy person/mom. After a long day of work, the last thing I want to do is cook dinner!

As I said, I’m here to break you out of a rut. Maybe you’re stuck in a ho-hum routine of chicken on Monday, tacos on Tuesday, salad on Wednesday, leftovers on Thursday, and pizza on Friday. Well don’t change your Friday routine for Heaven’s sake, but give Chicken Power Bowls with Crispy Baked Garbanzo Beans a try any other night of the week!

Chicken Power Bowls with Crispy Baked Garbanzo Beans |

Chicken Power Bowls with Crispy Baked Garbanzo Beans is a recipe based on Panera’s hidden menu, which offers “power bowls” that are rich in protein and contain only limited amounts of processed carbs. I SO love the idea, that I created my own!

Tender baby spinach is topped with sauteed chicken, crispy baked garbanzo beans, hard-boiled eggs, shelled pistachios, dried cranberries, and creamy chevre. This protein-packed bowl of deliciousness will fuel you ALL the way through the day or night, and is so stinking healthy, it’s borderline ridiculous.

I love it because the ingredients aren’t crazy – I bet you have 80% of the ingredients, if not more, in your kitchen right now – the cooked components can all be made ahead of time and, most importantly, the combination of flavors and textures is incredible. You’re going to especially flip over those crispy baked garbanzo beans. They’re like homemade corn nuts!

Take my advice and add these delicious, protein-filled power bowls to your menu any night of the week!

Chicken Power Bowls with Crispy Baked Garbanzo Beans |

By the way, it’s my Grandma’s 95th birthday today and she is undoubtedly reading this post from her iPad, perhaps at this very moment. She is, as they say, a true baller and one of the people that I admire the most. Please join me in wishing her the very happiest of birthdays. I love you, Grandma!

Chicken Power Bowls with Crispy Baked Garbanzo Beans |

Start by making the Crispy Baked Garbanzo Beans, aka healthy Corn Nuts. Yeah. Get excited! Drain then rinse a 15oz can of garbanzo beans (you might also find them labeled as chickpeas at the store.)

Drain the beans real good then dry ’em off even better in a kitchen towel. Pour the beans onto a baking sheet then toss with 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil and bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes, shaking the pan halfway through, and then season with salt. The beans will be crisp right out of the oven, but will get even crunchier as they cool. YUM!

By the way, you can bake these ahead of time. Just make sure they’re completely cool before storing in an airtight container.

Next make the hard-boiled eggs. I’m going to show you EXACTLY how to make perfect hard-boiled eggs with no green ring, and that peel easily to boot!

Place 4 eggs (I put a fifth one in because I was hungry) in a saucepan then add cold water until it covers the tops by one inch.

Bring the water to a boil then place a lid on top and remove the pan from the heat. Let the eggs sit for EXACTLY 12 minutes then plunge them into ice water, or run under cold water for a few minutes.

When they’re cool enough to handle, lightly smash the egg against a cutting board then roll with a little pressure until the egg is cracked all the way across the middle. Then, peel! The key to getting eggs to peel easily is to peel them fresh vs refrigerating them with the shell on and trying later.

Slice then devour or stash ’em in the fridge. Just like the garbanzo beans, these babies can be made and peeled ahead of time. Just slice when you’re ready to serve the Chicken Power Bowls.

You can’t have Chicken Power Bowls without the chicken, so saute 2 chicken breasts that have been brushed with extra virgin olive oil and seasoned with salt and pepper, then let cool for 10 minutes before thinly slicing. You can also do this ahead of time. Just cool then refrigerate and slice before serving.

Almost done! Make the Lemon-Honey Vinaigrette to drizzle on top of the bowls next. You could use any salad dressing you have in your fridge for these bowls, but this homemade dressing is simply divine.

Combine the juice of 2 lemons with 6 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, 2 Tablespoons honey, 1 microplaned or minced garlic clove, salt, and pepper in a jar or bowl then shake or whisk to combine. That’s it!

Finally, divide 9oz baby spinach between 4 bowls then top each with 1 sliced hard-boiled egg, 1/4 cup of the crispy baked garbanzo beans, 2 Tablespoons each shelled pistachios and dried cranberries, 1/4 of the cooked chicken, and 1oz crumbled chevre (goat cheese.) Drizzle with the Lemon-Honey Vinaigrette, then dig in!

Chicken Power Bowls with Crispy Baked Garbanzo Beans |

Chicken Power Bowls with Crispy Baked Garbanzo Beans

serves 4


Chicken Power Bowls with Crispy Baked Garbanzo Beans will keep you full for hours!


  • 15oz can garbanzo beans (also called chickpeas)
  • 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 chicken breasts (12-14oz,) pounded to an even thickness
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 4 eggs
  • 9oz baby spinach
  • 1/2 cup shelled pistachios
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 4oz chevre (goat cheese)
  • For the Lemon-Honey Vinaigrette:
    • Juice of 2 lemons
    • 6 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
    • 2 Tablespoons honey
    • 1 garlic clove, microplaned or minced
    • salt and pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Drain garbanzo beans then rinse and pat dry with a towel (the dryer the better!) Pour onto a baking sheet then add extra virgin olive oil and toss with your hands to coat. Bake for 35-40 minutes, stirring halfway through, or until caramel in color (beans will continue crisping as they cool.) Sprinkle with salt then set aside to cool completely. (Can be done ahead of time. Bake then cool completely before storing in an airtight container.)
  2. Place eggs in a saucepan then cover with cold water 1″ above the tops. Bring to a boil, place a lid on top, then remove pan from heat and let sit for 12 minutes. Drain then plunge eggs into ice water or run under cold water for a few minutes. Peel eggs when cool enough to handle then slice. (Can be done ahead of time. Cook then peel eggs and store in the refrigerator, and then slice before serving.)
  3. Brush chicken breasts on both sides with extra virgin olive oil then season with salt and pepper. Saute in a skillet over medium-high heat for 3-4 minutes a side, or until no longer pink in the center. Cool for 10 minutes, then thinly slice. (Can be done ahead of time. Cook then cool and refrigerate, and then slice before serving.)
  4. Divide spinach between four bowls then top each bowl with 1/4 cup crispy baked garbanzo beans, 1/4 of the cooked chicken, 1 sliced hard-boiled egg, 2 Tablespoons each pistachios and dried cranberries, and 1oz crumbled goat cheese.
  5. For the Lemon-Honey Vinaigrette: combine all ingredients in a jar or bowl then shake or whisk to combine. Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary then pour over salads and serve.

This recipe is courtesy of Iowa Girl Eats,

Chicken Power Bowls with Crispy Baked Garbanzo Beans |

I am capital O-bsessed with adding goat cheese to salads. It provides a tang that certainly elevated this bowl to next level status, but it also has a way of mixing with the salad dressing to make it thick and creamy. To. Die. You must try this Chicken Power Bowl sometime soon. Enjoy!

Chicken Power Bowls with Crispy Baked Garbanzo Beans |

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  1. All the flavours and textures here are rockin my socks! Love these power bowls, they would make such a great weeknight dinner!
    Plus these pictures are gorgeous!

  2. Losing Lindy 02.19.2014

    This looks amazing, I would leave off the craisins though.

    I saw you in a magazine! Congratulations!

    • Kristin 02.19.2014

      Thank you!! :)

      • Tracy 02.20.2014

        Which magazine?? I’d love to see it…please share!

  3. Chicago Jogger 02.19.2014

    This salad looks delicious – pinning right away! I have been loving roasted chickpeas lately too, they make a great add-on to create a hearty salad.

  4. ERIN 02.19.2014

    sooooo EXCITED about this salad! yum!

  5. This salad looks AMAZING! It honestly has all the ingredients to quite possibly become my favorite salad ever. Dressing sounds wonderful, too! Can’t wait to try it, and beautiful pictures!

  6. Amanda 02.19.2014

    have you had the panera version before? I was there yesterday and noticed it on the regular menu and it was very tempting.

    • Kristin 02.19.2014

      I haven’t – I am so guilty of getting the exact same thing there every time!

  7. I think I might actually make this one for lunch!

  8. Sara 02.19.2014

    I tried the hummus chicken one at Panera the other night and it was so good and so filling. I am definitely trying this one with the toasted chickpeas. Do you know how long they would keep for in an airtight container?

  9. Jill 02.19.2014

    I am heading home to DSM this weekend for my grandma’s 90th birthday.. aren’t G-ma’s the BEST?! Happiest of birthdays to yours!
    ps… also OBSESSED w/goat cheese on salads! My fave combo is arugula/goat/sunflower seeds. I could eat that allll day.

  10. Christina 02.19.2014

    This looks fabulous – and like something we would eat. I have not tried roasted garbanzo beans – my mom used to put them in chili – which I despised ! I will try them roasted though. Happy Birthday to your grandma – love on her every day.

    • Kristin 02.19.2014

      I hate regular garbanzos too – only like them roasted like this!

  11. Putting this on my weekly meal plan for next week! Yum, yum, yum!

  12. Kate 02.19.2014

    Soooooo trying this with tofu instead of chicken! Congrats to grandma, mine is 91 this year and also a badass. I guess some women get better with age!

  13. This looks yummy! Here in California, those are on the regular menu at Panera :) Which is nice, because I never know all these secret items different places have!

  14. Tracy 02.19.2014

    That looks really really good!! Love roasted garbanzos!

    My grandma just turned 95 in December and is an uber-cool Grandma as well! Our grandmas should be friends on Facebook!! ;)

  15. jen 02.19.2014

    have you ever tried steaming eggs, I steam mine for about 20 mins. you don’t have to worry about the pot boiling over and also no pot to clean after. also it does make them easier to peel, I will never boil another egg again.

  16. This is one delicious power bowl, all my favorite ingredients, lots of protein! Love it!

  17. Hayley 02.19.2014

    So funny, I was looking up the best way to hard boil eggs after seeing your inst-egg salad on instagram. I had settled on trying the baking-in-a-muffin tin method, but will have to try this instead!

    I also was looking for a recipe for baked chickpeas this morning as well, I think it is fate! I must make this amazing looking dish ASAP!

  18. Happy Birthday to Grandma! And I love the idea of roasting the chick peas…but how to get them on the fork is another problem.

  19. Deena 02.19.2014

    My husband is going to just love this! It seems like the perfect man-friendly salad :)

  20. Jeri 02.19.2014

    This looks amazing!! My kids may not eat it, but oh well. LOL Get on this healthy lifestyle train or get left at the station. (They are all now 20 and older)

    And Happy Birthday to your grandmother! My mini-me turned 20 today as well.

  21. […] Source […]

  22. Kristen 02.19.2014

    First, Happy Birthday Grandma! Mine lived to be 101 and 1/2. Wishing you both lots of happy years ahead. This looks like a great vegetarian bowl as well–just leave out the chicken. Will give it a try should the weather finally be spring for more than a day or two!

  23. I love this protein-packed, fresh salad! The combo of textures and flavors looks awesome! I can’t wait to give it a try and recommend the idea of baked garbanzo beans to my clients/patients for a healthy snack. Thanks!

  24. Susan 02.19.2014

    I hope that your Grandmother has the best birthday ever! You are both lucky to have each other!

    I need your weekly recipes! I am running out of ideas for recipes and yours will be healthy and easy to make!

    Thank you!!

  25. Amy 02.19.2014

    The boyfriend is going to love this! We are an omnivore/vegetarian household so he can have all the chicken and I am going to hoard those deliciously crispy chickpeas for myself! Thanks for helping us with our weeknight dilemma :)

  26. Amy 02.19.2014

    Oh! I almost forgot – Happy Birthday Grandma!

  27. Leigh 02.20.2014

    This salad looks delicious! Perfect way to spice up our usual salads. Thanks :)

  28. Thank you for another delicious and nutritious recipe! Can not wait to make this!

  29. Kristin 02.20.2014

    LOL you pretty much nailed our weekly meal plan! :-) My family thanks you for helping get us out of our dinner rut. Love your new weekly menus section. A great addition!

  30. ShaNae 02.20.2014

    Happy Birthday to your Grandma!

    I will try this recipe this weekend. Sounds yummy! There is nothing in it that my beyond picky 8 year old son won’t eat. Hooray! He is an August baby and a Virgo. I had a zodiac sign characteristic done, and it specifically stated they are picky eaters. I laughed and thought he eats to good at the 8 month stage to believe and then 3 hit and it was over. Textures are the bane of existence and nothing can touch one another. He will like this but all ingredients will be sitting next to each other not touching and not given the chance to mingle.

    Happy Thursday!

  31. Tara 02.20.2014

    I was going to have a spinach, cranberry and goat cheese salad for dinner, now I have to add the eggs and chicks! I am excited for dinner now, since I have everything needed on hand!

    *Happy birthday to your Grandmother !!

  32. i absolutely love the idea of this meal–and all the make ahead components are perfect for me right now when I try to do stuff while Brecken naps!! :)

  33. Paula Warrington 02.20.2014

    Looks delicious! Pinned for future use…

  34. Totally hear you on the people thinking you have these elaborate meals every night because you’re a blogger. Um, certainly not! haha. I just love this salad – especially the pistachios. Such a do-able weeknight dinner for a busy blogger :)

  35. I love roasting chickpeas – this looks great!!

  36. Jennifer S. 02.20.2014

    You have so many great recipes lately! Finishing our dinner of mini quinoa pizza bites as I type…..Husband had leftover quinoa meatballs with the basalmic BBQ – two great hits in our house! Can’t wait to try this salad – can I sub Feta for the chevre? Are they really all that different? Never had the chevre, so I’m not sure…

    • Kristin 02.21.2014

      Sure! The good thing about chevre is that you can usually find it in small, 4oz packages so if you don’t like it there’s not a TON wasted. I bet if you liked feta, you’ll love chevre though!

  37. […] recipe and add to recipe box at ZipList…View full recipe at Iowa Girl Eats…View more trending […]

  38. Making these for lunches for me and my husband this week! Thanks:))!

  39. Joni 02.23.2014

    This Iowa girl has been living in Shanghai, China for the last 15 months. I Made this for dinner Friday night and it was amazing! Thanks for transporting me home with some great food!

  40. Tina 02.24.2014

    I just love the pictures of Mr Lincoln! He’s so precious!!! I am eating this salad as we speak and it’s AMAZEBALLS!!! SOO good! Love the roasted chickpeas! FYI If anyone is doing weight watchers … I put it into my iPhone app and it came out as 18 points (including the goat cheese).

  41. Made this tonight! Delish!!! My 2 & 4 year old ate it & enjoyed it too! thanks for the tasty inspiration!!

  42. MP 02.25.2014

    I made this last night and omg. As a NON salad lover, this may have converted me. I’m adding this dressing recipe to my “use over and over” list. So good. THANK YOU!

  43. Jennifer S. 02.25.2014

    Glad I took your advice and tried it with goat cheese instead of feta. What a hit! I have had it 4 days in a row. Husband loves it, too. Talk about power protein – I have to convince myself to eat dinner after having this for lunch. It is so filling!

  44. […] Chicken Power Bowls with Crispy Baked Garbanzo Beans. What caught my attention with this recipe is the whole chickpeas as a crouton alternative thing. […]

  45. Mmpie 02.26.2014

    I made this salad for lunch today and it’s phenomenal! So easy if you make the ingredients ahead of time. Even easier if you can find bagged roasted chickpeas (I used the sea salt variety from The Good Bean, found at Marshall’s). Of course I would love to roast the chickpeas myself but this is a convenient alternative. Thanks for a wonderful recipe!

  46. Barbie Lane 02.26.2014

    Looks great! My husband is on a health kick and this looks right up his alley!

  47. Melanie 02.28.2014

    Oh my goodness. I need to make this and you are right, I do have 80% of the ingredients on hand! Pumpkin seeds instead of pistachios, maybe…
    My grandfather is 94 today. So lucky to have these amazing people around in our lives for so long.
    Thanks for the recipe!

  48. […] Power Bowls with Crispy Baked Garbanzo Beans via Iowa Girl Eats […]

  49. Kim 03.05.2014

    This is the second week in a row that I will eating this salad for lunch every day this week. I have been hesitant to roast chickpeas and now wonder why I waited so long! I was lazy this week and didn’t make the dressing but used a good drizzle of balsamic over the top and it has been equally tasty. I’ve also used avocado some days. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE your blog and your recipes!

  50. […] Inspired by Panera Bread’s “power bowls” and Iowa Girl Eats Version […]

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