Bowl meals are one of the latest food trends--and for good reason. Not
only are they a great way to have multiple types of nutritious whole foods
in one meal, but the flavors and combinations are almost endless and can
be customized to any taste. You can eat them hot or cold and serve them
for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Hungry for more? Here are five main components
for a great bowl:
Protein. Meat, poultry, fish--they all work in a bowl. So do vegetarian sources
of protein such as tofu.
Grain. Think whole grains such as quinoa, brown rice, whole-wheat noodles, barley,
farro and wheat berries.
Produce. Anything goes here. Throw in berries for breakfast, use the juice of citrus
fruits such as lemon or lime to add zing to a bowl or pair up leafy greens
such as spinach or kale with peppers, squashes or sweet potatoes.
Sauce. This helps bind the ingredients together and adds a burst of flavor. It
can be as simple as a basic vinaigrette, or it can be more complex, such
as peanut sauce to make an Asian-inspired dish or avocado sauce for a
bowl with Mexican flavor. You can even try your favorite homemade salad
Topping. This incorporates flavor and texture into your bowl--add crunch with nuts
or seeds, or seasoning with a dash of spices or some chopped fresh herbs.
If you're looking for something filling, try topping your bowl with
a fried egg.
Bowls are ripe for experimentation, but if you want to start with a recipe
before crafting your own bowls, here are a few to test out.
Thai Chicken Quinoa Bowl (recipe from How Sweet It Is) -
1/2 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed
1 chicken breast, cooked and shredded
1/3 cup chopped carrots
1/3 cup shelled edamame
1/3 cup chopped green onions
1/4 cup chopped peanuts
1/4 cup freshly chopped cilantro
2 Tbsp. sweet chili sauce
1 Tbsp. rice vinegar
1 Tbsp. canned coconut milk
1/2 Tbs. brown sugar
1 tsp. creamy peanut butter (it mixes in easier if it's melted, FYI)
1 garlic clove
1/2 lime, juice
1/8 tsp. ground ginger
Prepare quinoa according to directions. While quinoa is cooking, combine
all of the sauce ingredients together in a bowl and whisk well to combine.
Once quinoa is cooked, stir in the sauce and toss well to coat. Add in
chicken, carrots, edamame and green onions, stirring to combine. Taste
and season with a little salt and pepper if needed. Toss in half of the
peanuts and cilantro, then serve in a large bowl, topped with remaining
peanuts and cilantro
Italian Farro Bowl With Tuna & White Beans (from Refinery 29) -
1 cup prepared farro
1/2 cup canned white cannelini beans
1/2 cup chopped raw spinach
1/4 cup chopped red peppers
4 oz. good quality canned or jarred tuna
1 Tbsp. capers, optional
1 Tbsp. olive oil
2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
1/4 tsp. fresh or dried oregano
Pinch of red pepper flakes, optional
Spoon the prepared farro into the bottom of a medium-sized bowl. Drain
and rinse the beans. Arrange beans, kale, carrots, tuna and capers (if
used) on top. Sprinkle the oregano and red pepper flakes over the bowl,
then drizzle on the olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
Southwestern Brown Rice Bowl (from What's Gaby Cooking) -
2 cups brown rice
1 shallot, roughly chopped
2 cups tightly packed fresh cilantro leaves, tough stems removed
1 clove garlic
1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
1/2 cup olive oil
2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
1 tsp. salt
Pico de gallo
Shredded romaine lettuce
Chopped yellow or orange bell peppers
Shredded Colby jack cheese
Additional cilantro for garnish
Cook the brown rice. Combine all the ingredients for the cilantro vinaigrette
in a blender and blend for 60 seconds until very smooth. Taste and adjust
with salt and pepper as needed. Fold the vinaigrette into the cooked brown
rice. Divide the rice among the bowls and top with black beans, guacamole,
pico de gallo, shredded lettuce, bell peppers and cheese. Add extra cilantro
to garnish if desired.
This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical
care. Always follow your healthcare professional's instructions.