Tag: buddhabowl

How to Meal Prep for the Ultimate Buddha Bowl – making lunch easy & delicious

How to Meal Prep for the Ultimate Buddha Bowl – making lunch easy & delicious

If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve probably seen me post a Buddha bowl or two…ha who am I kidding? More like every other day. They’ve pretty much become a staple in my diet and for good reason. Buddha Bowls are super nourishing, full of wholesome, real ingredients that are both good for you and believe it or not, taste REALLY good too.  They keep me satiated and leave me feeling energetic, not bogged down (which let’s be honest, is crucial when you’re eating lunch at 12pm and need to get through the rest of the work day without hitting that “afternoon slump”). If all of that isn’t enough reason to start introducing Buddha bowls into your diet, than how about the fact that so long as you meal prep, you can throw these together in less than 5 minutes AND keep it exciting each week with new/different creations?!

I wanted to provide you with my quick & dirty tips to building your own Buddha bowl each week and share some of my favorite recipes with you!

Pick a Base

I like to mix up my greens as much as possible or choose 1-2 to mix. My favorites are spinach, baby kale, romaine, and arugula. I use about 2-3 heaping cups of raw greens.

Choose a Protein

The key to feeling satisfied longer after lunch is to load up on protein. This can come in many ways. I choose not to eat meat, so my go-to protein sources usually come from the following (but obviously, feel free to add meat!):

  • Hard Boiled Eggs (I love making a huge batch of these on Sunday for meal prep. So easy, filling, budget-friendly, and are perfect for either a quick breakfast, snack, or to add to a salad bowl.
  • Veggie Burgers. I love Hilary’s Eat Well burgers. They’re super filling and taste delicious! They also have smaller; bite-sized veggie bites that I LOVE as well. Or if you’re feeling ambitious, make your own!
  • Plant-Based Protein. This can come as quinoa, chickpeas, lentils, white beans, black beans, mung beans, Portobello mushrooms, chia seeds, hemp seeds, flax seeds, grains* (see below).
  • Salmon Quinoa Balls. This is a recent recipe of mine that I LOVE and it’s packed with protein, easy to make a batch of, and guess what? I use canned salmon and no, it doesn’t taste bad! I feel like canned fish gets a bad rep, BUT it’s all in how you use it. It’s important to make sure first and foremost that the can fish you’re buying is non-GMO, sustainably wild caught, and tests for mercury. Whole Foods usually has a few trustworthy brands in stock.
    • In a small bowl mix the following ingredients: 1 can of salmon + 1 full egg + about 1/3 cup pre-cooked quinoa (or more if you choose) + ¼ – ½ tsp garlic powder + Himalayan salt & black pepper to flavor + 1 heaping TBSP of Sir Kensington’s mustard + 1 heaping TBSP of Primal Kitchen Chipotle Lime Mayo.
  • Mix evenly throughout and store in fridge for 30 minutes (this helps to harden them before forming small balls to cook on the stove top). Heat a sauté pan with 1 TBSP of ghee (I find this works best for frying). Form small balls (~ 2 tbsp each) and cook for about 3-5 minutes on each side, checking periodically. Remove once golden brown.

 

 

Screen Shot 2017-11-28 at 8.36.52 AM

Pick a Healthy Fat

Following the Fab 4 mindset from Kelly Lovaque’s book “Body Love” has really helped me to understand how to breakdown my meals and ensure I’m properly fueling myself. FATS are KEY for feeling full, longer. I find I’m soo much more satisfied with my meals when it’s backed with healthy fats.

  • Avocados (usually use about 1/3 of an avocado)
  • About 2 TBSP of Nuts or Seeds, or a combo of both (Almonds, Cashews, Walnuts, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, etc. – pick one you love and stick with it!)
  • Oils (olive oil, flax oil, avocado oil, coconut oil – make a yummy dressing with any of these!)
  • Tahini (sooo yummy in Buddha bowls – mixes well with a splash of olive oil, lemon juice, and garlic)
  • Healthy salad dressings to have on hand (my favorite brand is Primal Kitchen. I always have a few of their dressings on hand. My favorites are the honey mustard, green goddess, and ceasar. They also have healthy mayos using avocado oil that I love as well.)
  • Salmon
  • Cook your veggies in Oils and/or Ghee.
  • Hummus
  • Nut-Based “Cheese” (favorites include Kite Hill and TreeLine)

Load up on the Veggies!

 

This is my FAVORITE part! I love seeing how my Buddha bowls change with the season. I love choosing veggies that are in season – they’re usually more affordable, they’re usually FRESH and LOCAL, and they’re really what your body needs. *hint* think about how our bodies crave starchy root vegetables in the fall and winter because they’re warming, nourishing, and keep us grounded (quite literally they are pulled from the ground). Ayurveda (eastern medicine) talks alllll about this if you’re interested in learning more!

For the Fall and Winter, I typically like to include 1-2 root vegetables in my bowl and then 1-2 other vegetables (more details below on some of my favorites). Details on meal prep tutorial at bottom of page.

Root Veggies:

  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Purple Potatoes
  • Delicata Squash
  • Butternut Squash
  • Acorn Squash

Additional Veggies:

  • Broccoli or Broccolini
  • Brussel Sprouts
  • Cauliflower (white, purple, yellow – they’re all great!)
  • Zucchini
  • Beets
  • Mushrooms
  • Heirloom Carrots

Screen Shot 2017-11-28 at 8.37.57 AM

Pick a source of Fiber

  • Lentils
  • Split peas
  • Chia seeds (although I’d recommend soaking them typically, rather than adding them raw)
  • Flax seeds
  • Brussel sprouts
  • Chickpeas (I love adding crispy chickpeas for a nice crunch on a salad!)
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Broccoli sprouts

Probiotic Rich Foods (optional, but recommended!)

 

  • Sauerkraut is ABSOLTUELY my go-to. Farmhouse Cultures or Wildbrine are both great brands.
  • Tempeh

 

Grains (optional)

 

I don’t always add grains to my Buddha bowls  – it usually depends on what my protein looks like. If I’m only adding 1 egg, I typically like to pair that with a grain that’s high in protein. Quinoa, Millet, Buckwheat, wheat berries, barley, wild rice, etc. are all fairly high in protein.

 

Choose a Dressing!

Though a minor step, your dressing can really pull your Buddha bowl together! A lot of what I choose to dress my Buddha bowls in, I’ve mentioned under “healthy fats”.

  • Oils (olive oil, flax oil, avocado oil, coconut oil)
  • Tahini – mixes well with a splash of olive oil, lemon juice, and garlic
  • Healthy salad dressings to have on hand (my favorite brand is Primal Kitchen. I always have a few of their dressings on hand. My favorites are the honey mustard, green goddess, and ceasar. They also have healthy mayos using avocado oil that I love as well.)
  • Hummus (sometimes a HUGE dollop of hummus w/ a squeeze of lemon juice is all you need!)
  • Nut-Based “Cheese” (favorites include Kite Hill and TreeLine)
  • Apple Cider Vinegar + Lemon Juice + Olive Oil
  • Make your own Honey Mustard (1 tsp honey + 1 tbsp Dijon mustard + 1 tbsp olive oil + a squeeze of fresh lemon juice + Himalayan salt + black pepper)
  • Vegan Pumpkin Seed Pesto (fresh basil, olive oil, lemon juice, pumpkin seeds, fresh minced garlic, handful of spinach, Himalayan salt, black pepper)

 

 

 


 

Screen Shot 2017-11-28 at 8.37.31 AM

Now, I know that was A LOT of information, but I wanted to show you just how easy it is to diversify your buddha bowls and mix it up each week! My recommendation to you is to choose 1 or 2 from each bucket that you’ll use for the week and meal prep it all on Sunday. Each week, choose something new and different from each bucket that way you’re always keeping things exciting!

Here’s an example of what I’ll prep on Sunday:

  • Roast vegetables. Set oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Cut my sweet potatoes into wedges, coat in avocado oil, Himalayan salt, black pepper, & rosemary. Cook for ~ 20-25 minutes & once soft, throw on broil for about 2 mins or until slightly charred.
  • I’ll also roast 2 heads of broccoli & one head of cauliflower at the same time. Coat them in coconut oil & add adobo seasoning from Primal Palate. I’ll cook them for a shorter amount of time (usually about 15-20 mins).
  • Let both of these sit & cool to room temperature before storing in the fridge.
  • While the above is cooking, I’ll boil a large pot of quinoa & hard boil about 6 eggs for the week.
  • The above should only take you about an hour in total! This alone makes prepping lunch each day SO much easier!
  • If I have extra time in my day, I may make my quinoa salmon burgers & whip together a vegan pesto that I can use in my Buddha bowls each week.

That’s it! Each day you make your bowl it should easily take less than 5 minutes to throw together and build your gorgeous, nourishing Buddha bowl!

Turmeric Cauliflower Rice, Veggie, & Squash Buddha Bowl

Turmeric Cauliflower Rice, Veggie, & Squash Buddha Bowl

A few weeks ago, I posted a blog all about Turmeric. If that post didn’t convince you enough to introduce turmeric daily into your diet, check out this one from Positive Health Wellness. Some of the main benefits they talk about include the ease of inflammation, cancer preventative, improved brain function, lower the blood sugar, reduced joint paint…and oh, the list could just go on! An interesting thing I learned from their blog was that you should try to incorporate black pepper when you’re consuming turmeric to help with the absorption & increase the potential benefits!

Anyway, the reason why I bring up my fave new spice again is because of this weeks buddha bowl! Typically I’ll add quinoa as my base, however this week, I opted for cauliflower rice as a fun alternative! I’ll be honest, I took the lazy way out and bought the bag of already “riced” cauliflower, but HEY, anything I can do to cut down the time of my Sunday meal prep, right?!

Ingredients for the bowl (yields enough servings for 5 days):
• 3-4 cups of brussel sprouts
• 2 large Broccoli florets
• 1 Bag of Cauliflower Rice (most grocery stores stock brands like Green Giant OR if you’re feeling ambitious you can make your own by following a recipe from the Minimalist Baker)
• 1 clove of minced garlic
• 3-4 cups of butternut squash (Whole Foods typically sells these pre-cut as well in small, cube-sized pieces)
• Coconut oil
• Lemon juice
• For the Rice – 1 TBSP of turmeric, 1/2 TBSP of curry powder, shake of black pepper & salt
• Additional spices include: cinnamon, paprika, rosemary, nutritional yeast
• 5 eggs (to prep & make hard boiled eggs for the week)
• For additional “buddha bowl” toppings …scroll to the bottom of the page for some of favorite brands/toppings!

screen-shot-2016-11-19-at-8-55-30-am

For the bowl –

• Start by setting the oven to 415 degrees Fahrenheit. Next, begin slicing your Brussel sprouts in half. On a baking sheet coated lightly in coconut oil, add your Brussel sprouts and layer another 1-2 TBSP of coconut oil, mixing in a pinch of salt, black pepper, and rosemary. You’ll want to follow the same steps for your broccoli – however, I choose to coat it in salt, black pepper, and nutritional yeast for a “vegan cheesy” alternative. Once those are lathered evenly throughout, place both baking sheets in the oven and cook for about 15 minutes, checking on them/mixing them around every 5-10 minutes. I personally like my brussel sprouts charred and slightly burnt, so I tend to keep them in for 20 minutes (just make sure to keep an eye on them as they’ll cook fast in the high heat)!

• Next, either dice your butternut squash into bite size pieces or if you’ve bought the pre-cut, you’ll want to cover a baking sheet lightly in coconut oil. Layer your squash evenly on the baking sheet. Add another 1-2 TBSP of coconut oil, a pinch of salt, cinnamon, and paprika. Using your hands, spread the oil & seasoning throughout the squash. These may need slightly longer than the brussels & broccoli – I tend to let them cook for about ~ 20-25 minutes.

• While the Brussel sprouts, broccoli, and squash are cooking, take out a large, stick-free, sauté pan, add your minced garlic with about 1-2 TBSP of coconut oil. Let that cook on low heat for about 1 minute. Next, add your bag of cauliflower rice to the pan. Add in your turmeric, curry powder, black pepper, & salt. Let cook for about 5-10 minutes. If you find it sticking, rather than adding more oil, I’ll usually add some lemon juice which adds a nice flavor as well! The cauliflower rice really only needs like 10 minutes to fully cook.

• While everything else is cooking – get a small pot, fill it with enough water to cover the eggs by 1 inch. Then add your 5 eggs into the pot, slowly bring it to a boil. Once it’s boiling, take the pot off of the heat, let it sit for 10-12 minutes. Then rinse it under cold water for a few minutes. Finally, using a spoon, you can crack the shell and peel off. The hard boiled eggs are fine being stored in the fridge for the week.

screen-shot-2016-11-19-at-8-56-10-am

• Now for the fun part – bringing your bowl together! I personally like to top my bowls off with 1 hard boiled egg, a heaping spoon of sauerkraut (GUT HEALTH Y’ALL), 1/2 an avocado (because I LOVE my healthy fats), a sprinkle of crispy chickpeas (because I love a little bit of crunch & they’re a great added protein source), and lastly, feel free to drizzle some lemon tahini dressing to top it off!

Here are a few of the products I use for the above ^ toppings:

Biena Foods Crispy Chickpeas
• SauerKraut – either WildBrine (they’re cauliflower & curry flavor is to DIE for) or FarmHouse Culture KRAUT (huge fan of they’re garlic & dill flavor)
• Annie’s Homegrown has an awesome “Lite” Goddess Dressing that tastes SO GOOD on top of these bowls

Hope you enjoy these bowls as much as I do! 🙂


%d bloggers like this:
%d bloggers like this: