Have you tried Buddha bowls yet? I’m probably late to the party, but that’s OK. They’re so good I had to write a post about them anyway.
If you haven’t tried them, you’ve got to make one soon. They’re an easy, tasty way to throw together a super-healthy meal that also happens to be gorgeous to look at.
Now, I’ve been a big fan of one-bowl meals for as long as I can remember. In fact, at one point in my life, someone near and dear to me called me a bowl-using m-fer. Is that sweet or what?😹
Anyway. Buddha bowls are like the ultimate one-bowl meal.
I guess you could define them as salads that also include warm ingredients. They get their name from their big, overflowing “belly” bowls, which are kind of like Buddha’s belly.
How to Make a Buddha Bowl
There’s a basic formula to create “hippy bowls” (another name for Buddha bowls):
- Start with a base layer of greens
- Add grains and/or beans of your choice
- Layer on some veggies
- Sprinkle on some seeds and/or nuts
- Top with a dressing or sauce
Any of these can be precooked or prepped so you can throw them together when it’s time to eat.
You’ll notice that there is no animal protein (i.e., cheese, egg, seafood, poultry, or meat) in that formula. Traditionally, Buddha bowls are entirely plant-based, but hey, it’s your meal so if you want to load on some hard-boiled eggs, shrimp, or whatever, that’s up to you.
No Recipes Required
When it comes to one-bowl meals, I am not a huge fan of actual recipes. I usually have a basic formula and use ingredients that taste good, and generally the meal comes out pretty fantastic.
This lack-of-recipe situation can be a bonus, because you’re not nailed down to specific (or expensive) ingredients. You can make do with what you have on-hand.
But it can be kind of a bummer if you come up with a combo that’s especially stellar and you can’t remember the specifics of what/how much you used.
Comfort Food ‘Salad’
Back to this recipe. I’ve been thinking a LOT of about roasted veggie salad lately.
One of my “things” for 2017 was to eat a salad 5 times a week. And maybe because we’re deep into the pummeling that January offers, it’s hard to get excited about eating plain-old cold salads.
When the temp dips under 20 degrees (and even moreso when it’s under 10 or sub-zero), I don’t know about you but I crave warm comfort foods.
That’s why I came up with this combo, based on the formula above.
The awesome news is that roasted veggies taste amazing when they’re chilled, too, so if you happen to make this another time of the year, you’ll still love it.
You can precook the quinoa and veggies and heat them up when it’s time to eat, and then throw together the Buddha bowl.
I’m all about convenience and frozen veggies (I rarely throw away frozen veggies, but fresh sometimes go bad before I have a chance to use them up!). The good news is you can easily roast frozen veggies. Here’s a great tutorial from The Kitchn.
Crispy Chickpeas = Crave-Worthy
Also, if you haven’t tried crispy chickpeas yet, put those on your list too. They are so crispy and tasty you’ll wonder why they didn’t become trendy till now.
The trick to crisping them is to rinse the chickpeas and then dry them very, very well before you pop them onto the stove. Now, if you’re looking for more specific how-tos when it comes to making crispy chickpeas here’s a basic guide to making them on the stove (although I use much less oil). A lot of people do prefer making them in the oven, but they don’t seem to get as crispy for me.
Now, the “sauce” I made for this particular bowl veers off-track a little because it contains yogurt (which is not plant-based), but I was in the mood for a creamy dressing. You can use whatever dressing you happen to love. I didn’t need much of it – just a tablespoon plunked on the side that I dipped my fork into occasionally.
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(above: ricotta with honey and raspberries)