4 Rice Bowls You Really Need to Try

Protein over starch has never been more enticing

Protein over starch is a combination as old as time. These L.A. chefs are harnessing bold flavors for a fresh twist.

1. Katsudon at RBTA

Lunchtime at this narrow izakaya means donburi, soulful Tokyo-style bowls that Justin Baey builds from Matsuri Super Premium rice and a sweet dashi stock. Try the one topped with a deep-fried pork cutlet and scrambled eggs with a nest of shredded nori and pickled red ginger. 5629 1/2 N. Figueroa St., Highland Park

2. Manager’s Meal at Baohaus

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The namesake bao buns at Eddie Huang’s Far East Plaza shop get the most attention, but don’t sleep on the Manager’s Meal: a meaty medley (fried chicken, pork belly, and minced pork) over white rice along with spicy fermented cabbage. 727 N. Broadway, Ste. 130, Chinatown

3. North-South Bibimbap at Nabi

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Wander through Union Swapmeet to find chef-author Cecilia Hae-Jin Lee’s Nabi, a lunch counter that riffs on the Korean rice bowl bibimbap. The North-South mixes white and brown rice with ginger chicken and spicy pork. 4632 Santa Monica Blvd., Ste. 16, East Hollywood

4. Impossible “Vigan” Longganisa Bowl from RiceBar

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Though we adore the garlicky, papaya-slaw-topped longganisa sausage bowl at downtown’s tiny RiceBar, the vegan alternative Charles Olalia cooks up with plant-based “sausage meat” is so good it’ll make even ardent carnivores question their ways. 419 W. 7th St., downtown

RELATED: 5 Bowls of the Best Ramen in L.A.

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