Zucchini & Chicken Spelt Berry Grain Bowls with Salsa Verde

July 28, 2020

Ancient grains like spelt berries are a nutritious, versatile, and filling backbone to any home-cooked meal. They’re perfect for cooking in large batches to use throughout the week in soups, salads, and grain bowls like this one. In this recipe, you can prep everything ahead for a quick and healthy lunch or dinner. It’s also incredibly versatile – feel add or substitute ingredients as you please. 

1 pound Local Roots zucchini, cut into spears
1 Local Roots chicken breast, bone in
1 cup Local Roots spelt berries
¼ yellow onion
1 Local Roots egg 
Grapeseed/canola oil

Salsa verde:
¼ cup oregano
¼ cup mint
1 garlic clove, grated
2 tbsp olive oil

Pickled onions:
½ red onion, thinly sliced
⅛ cup sugar
⅛ cup apple cider vinegar
¼ cup water


  1. Soak spelt berries overnight with 2” of water above the surface. (This cuts cooking time in half!)
  2. Add them to a small saucepan with 2” of water above the surface. Add in onion and salt, bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer. Cook until soft and slightly chewy, about 30 minutes. Drain off cooking water and set aside.
  3. Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil. Add chicken breast, bring down to a simmer, and cook for 10-20 minutes (internal temperature should be 165°.)
  4. Once the chicken has cooled to touch, shred it and set aside.
  5. Heat a cast iron skillet with oil. Season zucchini with salt and pepper. Add to cast iron and cook on each side until the center is tender and edges are golden brown. Once cooled, slice into ¼” pieces.
  6. Combine all the salsa verde ingredients in a blender or spice grinder. Blend until emulsified, and season with salt as needed.
  7. Add sugar, water, and apple cider vinegar to a small saucepan. Heat until warm to dissolve the sugar. Add in onions and allow to cool. 
  8. Bring water to a boil, add your egg, and reduce heat to medium-low. Remove the egg after 8 minutes, draining the hot water and cooling down with room temperature water. Once cooled, peel the egg and set it aside. 
  9. To assemble: add spelt berries, shredded chicken, zucchini, and salsa verde to a bowl. Season with a squeeze of lemon and salt as needed. Garnish with mint leaves and shaved lemon. Serve with a side of pickled onions and a soft-boiled egg.

Recipe by Local Roots team member Phoebe Tran.

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