Street Cart Chicken & Rice

This healthier version of street cart chicken & rice is an excellent to your weekly meal rotation. It’s quick, easy, full of flavor, and nutrition so you – and your whole family! – will love it. 

When you hear New York City, you typically think of pizza. And it’s like, duh, New York has some pretty great pizza. And truthfully, what’s better than grabbing a slice as big as your head after a night out? Or a rough day at the office? Or maybe, just maybe, it’s time for some freakin pizza. You don’t need a justification. Pizza is love. Pizza is life.

That’s not all the NYC food scene has to offer. No, no, my friends. NYC also has these amazing STREET CARTS serving up meats and rice and pita all hours of the day (and night). And, unlike most of NYC, these street cart meals are STUPID CHEAP. Like, you can get a full meal (or two, really) for under $8. YES.

And while these street cart meals are amazing and full of flavor and everything that is NYC, they’re not so healthy. Because, you know, lots of oil. And when you eat something with a lot of fat – especially if you’re not used to those sorts of foods – your stomach betrays you. 💩

Not with MY Street Cart Chicken & Rice! I took certain liberties when creating this street cart style meal such as: using boneless, skinless chicken thighs and grilling rather than frying up over oil. And I’ve served my street cart chicken & rice with turmeric rice and a cucumber-tomato salad. Oh, and a delicious garlicky yogurt sauce. Hell-to-the-YEAH!


NYC Street Cart Style Chicken & Rice Bowls


  • For the chicken:
  • 1 1/2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 2 TBSP plain yogurt
  • 1 clove garlic, minced or grated
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 3/4 tsp ground curry powder
  • For the rice:
  • 2 cups basmati or white rice
  • 1 small white onion, minced
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp cardamom
  • 1 garlic clove, grated
  • 2 TBSP butter
  • For the white sauce:
  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • 2 TBSP tahini
  • 1 clove garlic, grated
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • For the tomato-cucumber salad:
  • Chopped cucumber
  • Cherry tomatoes, chopped
  • Parsley, salt, pepper, dill and some olive oil


  1. Prepare the chicken: In a large bowl, cover the chicken thighs with yogurt and seasonings. Cover bowl tightly with plastic wrap and marinade for at least 1 hour but the longer, the better!

  2. Prepare the rice: I, personally, cook my rice in a 1:2 ratio meaning for every 1 cup of dry rice, I use 2 cups of water. In this instance, we'll be using 2 cups of dry rice so you'll need 4 cups of water in a pot with a lid. Turn stove top to "high" until your rice has begun to boil and then turn the stove top to low. Let finish cooking, covered, for 20 minutes.

  3. While your rice is boiling, prepare everything else: grate/mince garlic cloves and mince your onion. Once the rice is done, turn a large sauce pan over medium heat. When your pan is hot, add your 2 TBSP butter, onion, garlic, and seasonings and cook until fragrant (approximately 1-1 1/2 minutes). Add in the rice until everything is mixed together nicely.

  4. Cooking the chicken: Heat your grill to a medium heat and once hot, add thighs to the grill. Depending on the thickness of your thighs, you'll flip somewhere between 5-7 minutes. After 5-7 minutes on both sides, remove from heat and set aside. If you're unsure if your chicken is done, use a meat thermometer to ensure the chicken has reached an internal temperature of 165F.

  5. The white sauce: Mix everything in a bowl. That's it.

  6. Your bowl (finally): Throw everything together in a bowl along with your tomato-cucumber salad. Top with the white sauce and additional garnish if you wish!

This healthier version of street cart chicken & rice is an excellent to your weekly meal rotation. It's quick, easy, full of flavor, and nutrition so you - and your whole family! - will love it. 

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