Mexican Cuisine. · Salads/ Recipes for the Calorie Conscious.

Taco Bell Cantina Bowl – Fresh, Low Carb and Low Sodium Version – A fitting 300`th Post!!!


The Taco Bell Cantina Bowl is my all time favourite one bowl lunch option! It has carbs from the rice,  protein from the beans, fat which are abundant in avocados, the smoothness of the green goddess dressing, tart and crunchy corn salsa, all doused with the undertones of cilantro and lemon in every bite. The original Cantina Bowl has tonnes of sodium and a total of 540 calories. By substituting ranch with thick curd, it makes it more healthier with lower fat and of course fresher. The probiotics in the curd are extremely beneficial to the body and then there is the special relationship between the beans, the cilantro rice and the dressing all tied together with douses of fresh lemon juice! Try it and life would never be the same again!


  1. Bottom Layer of the herby cilantro lemon rice.
  2. The next layer of spice blended cooked black beans.
  3. A bed of crisp romaine lettuce.
  4. Liberal douse of citrusy fresh Green Goddess Dressing.
  5. A dollop of Guacamole.
  6. 2 Tbsp Pico De Gallo.
  7. A handful of lemony grilled corn.
  8. 1 Tbsp of sour cream( Optional).
  9. Garnish of tortilla chips(Optional).



1 Cup Basmati or Long Grained Rice.

1/2 Onion sliced long.

1 Tbsp Chopped Garlic.

1 Tbsp chopped cilantro.

1 Tbsp chopped parsley.

1 Tbsp Lemon Juice.

  • Cook the basmati/long grained rice with a few drops of oil and a few drops of lemon juice.
  • In a wok, saute onion and when pink, add all the herbs – garlic, cilantro and parsley.
  • Add the cooked rice and mix and finally add the lemon juice. Add salt as needed.
  • Add more chopped cilantro to enhance the flavour.
  • This forms the bed of the Taco Bell Cantina Bowl.



1 Cup Black Beans soaked overnight and cooked in a little salt.

1 pinch of seasoning salt.

A pinch of paprika.

A few drops of Lemon Juice.

  • Combine the cooked black beans with the seasoning salt, paprika and lemon juice. Set aside.





2 Hass Avocados .

1 Small Ripe Tomato.

1 Jalapeno.

1 Lemon`s Juice.

1 Garlic Pod.

Sea Salt.


Cilantro to garnish.


  • Split the avocados in half, remove the seed, and scoop out the flesh.  Transfer to a shallow bowl.
  • Immediately squeeze the lemon juice over the avocados to prevent oxidation and mix it in.
  • Add the sliced jalapenos, tomatoes, salt, pepper,  crushed garlic and mix it all with the back of a spatula.
  • Add a dash of chopped cilantro for garnish.




1 Fresh Tomato chopped very fine.

1 Onion chopped fine.

1 Jalapeno~ chopped fine.

Chopped Cilantro to garnish.

A few drops of lemon juice.

  • Combine all the above ingredients in a shallow bowl. Garnish with chopped cilantro.




2 Cups Sweet Corn.

1/2 Cup Cilantro .

2 Japaleno Peppers.

1/4 Tsp Garlic Powder.(Optional)


Juice from 1 lemon.


  • Thaw the sweet corn and pat it dry. Flavour it with salt and a little lemon juice.
  • In a food processor puree the cilantro, jalapeno and lemon juice to a rough paste.
  • Marinate it over the sweet corn kernels for about ten minutes.
  • Grill it on a stove top/ grill/ oven until lightly brown.
  • Adjust salt and garnish with more cilantro and a few more drops of lemon juice.
  • This is one of the ingredient to garnish of the Taco Bell Cantina Bowl.


The Cantina Bowl is assembled for every person in the bowl in which they would be served in. So individual portions are made as per preference and served, as follows:

  1. In the serving bowl layer a bed of the herb and citrus flavoured rice.
  2. Next, add a ladle of the seasoned black beans, over the rice.
  3. Drizzle a layer of chopped romaine lettuce over the beans. This provides crunch and is a surprise layer.,
  4. Slather a ladleful of the fresh and citrus bursting Green Goddess Dressing.
  5. A big dollop of Guacamole is served on top of the dressing on one side.
  6. IMG_5773
  7. Another spoonful of sour cream is served on the other side.
  8. These are sprinkled with the prepared Pico De Gallo.
  9. The entire bowl is drizzled with a handful of grilled corn.

Can anything else beat that???

12 thoughts on “Taco Bell Cantina Bowl – Fresh, Low Carb and Low Sodium Version – A fitting 300`th Post!!!

  1. Yumm.. looks Yumm… will taste Yumm i presume… Taco Bell’s Cantina bowl is loaded with 600 Calories…

  2. wow this looks delicious! SO many layers yet you make it sound too easy:):) love the step by step explanation:)

  3. I’ve been looking around to see if I stumble upon a home-made version of the Cantina bowl, and was delighted to find it here. I’m definitely trying this soon.

  4. Looks wonderful, don’t remember eating it in US, but will surely try this. After the famous 10 layer Mexican dip I make, this would probably impress my friends too

  5. @ Laks,

    the cantina bowl is something that was created by Chef Garcias very recently…i am guessing about 2 years back…dont u have taco bell in the UK? S says that its there in bangalore!!!

  6. @ John,

    You have not tried the cantina bowl at taco bell? its a fun one pot dish that has everything going it in…tastes, textures and flavours…Love it!
    thanks for your comments..

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