Buffalo Chicken Quinoa – Recipe

So one of my favorite places to grab a fast healthy meal in Chicago is Protein Bar.  It’s fast, healthy, and delicious!  However I don’t have one right by where I live – so I only go when I am right downtown – which isn’t all that often – especially in the summer because I hate tourists I am not a huge fan of crowds.  And Chicago in the summer months -especially the weekends – its really crowded.


So I started experimenting – and created my own Buffalo Chicken Quinoa bowl that I can make at home.

Quinoa (KEEN-WAH) is a whole grain that has gained popularity in the past few years.  It is a whole grain, and a complete protein – meaning it contains both essential and non-essential amino acids.  Because of this, it is a really good staple for vegetarians, and vegans to incorporate.  Because of how nutrient dense it is – no more than about 1 cup is necessary to reap all of these wonderful benefits.

In fact for about 1 cup – that equates to ~220 calories; 4 g of Total Fat; 39 g Total Carb; 5 g dietary fiber; 8 g protein.

So here is what I did:

I prepared about 2-3 cups cooked quinoa – I used the Trader Joe’s variety – because that’s just what I happen to have, but I also like that it comes in a resealable bag.  I boiled it using a little bit of low sodium (unsalted) chicken broth.

I grilled two chicken breasts and seasoned them with black pepper, and a little bit of Red Hot (sauce).  Once they were cooked I set them aside to cool.  While the quinoa and chicken were cooking I chopped up my veggies, 2 Zucchinis, some celery, and a little bit of red onion.  I mixed those together in a bowl with a few teaspoons of Red Hot.  When the quinoa was done cooking I let that cool for a minute then added that to the vegetables, and then I diced the chicken and added that.

I added a few more teaspoons of red hot, and stirred everything together.  I topped it with a little sprinkle of goat cheese.

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It was an amazing recreation of one of my favorite meals to get outside of the home.

 I have some “rough” macros for you – I really was not that exact in my measurements for this- so when I make it again, I’ll be more exact.  So for about 2 cups of the prepare product (I had a green salad on the side – although I found the two cups to be pretty filling).

Calories: 480

Total Fat: 10 g

Saturated Fat: 2 g

Monounsaturated Fat: 2 g

Polyunsaturated Fat: 1 g

Sodium: 129 mg

Potassium: 261 mg

Total Carbohydrate: 65 g

Fiber: 7 g

Sugars: 9g

Protein: 37 g

*This is also a good source of Vitamin C, and Iron.

Again these are “rough” macros- but they shouldn’t be too far off.

I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I did!  This recipe is also gluten free, and a easy recipe to make (it’s ready in under 30 minutes), so it’s perfect for a quick weeknight recipe!


  1. I am printing this out. We aren’t too crazy about spicy foods but I’m sure I can tone it down to our taste. I’m learning a lot from you Sarah. Thanks!!

    1. That’s great! I love hearing that! I tend to make things more on the spicy side, because that just helps me stay away from added salt, however this really didn’t turn out too spicy, and it can very easily be adjusted to taste 🙂

  2. I love the protein bar! I haven’t had much of their food, I’m obsessed w/their smoothies! But I’ll have to give this a shot!

    1. Protein Bar is a go-to when I’m in the loop. I have had a few of their “bowls”, and a few of their sides. They have a location in the FFC in West Loop – so when I work out there- I typically stop by when I finish 🙂 I highly recommend!

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