Sunday, 19 November 2017

Buddha Bowls

Buddha bowls are probably my favourite thing to make for dinner! They're so handy to make when you have a few things leftover from other dinners and you're trying to get rid of them! And they're good to make when you're in the mood to treat yourself, a buddha bowl is like a hug in a bowl, there's something so comforting about them!

I hear you saying "What's a buddha bowl eh?" Well, basically it's a bowl filled with loads of different bits and bobs that you can have for dinner, or any time of the day that you like! It's usually made up of a mix of grains, veg, beans, and some sort of dressing if you're feeling fancy!
You can literally put anything into a buddha bowl, why not make some red lentil dahl or some quinoa and kidney bean chili to fill your bowl with!

There are literally no rules to making a buddha bowl, just throw in whatever ya want! Sometimes I see people making them on a big plate but I feel that it's called a buddha bowl for a reason ahaha, I think a big bowl works much better than a plate!
I think buddha bowls are so much fun to make and you can really let your creativity take over and end up with a ridiculously nourishing and filling bowl! Just see what food is in your fridge, put your thinking cap on, and get cooking!

As I said already, there are no rules to making a buddha bowl, but there are always 5 bits that I try to have in a buddha bowl that I make. Obvs there are some days when I just throw anything into a bowl and I'm happy out, but whenever I think of it I try to include the following 5 steps to make a rockin' buddha bowl that'll keep me full for the rest of the day!
Here they are:

1. Grain (E.g brown rice)
2. Plant Protein (E.g beans)
3. Greens (E.g spinach)
4. Veg (E.g curried sweet potato)
5. Extras (E.g hummus and sesame seeds)

  1. Grain - Whatever grain you pick forms a base for your buddha bowl, it kinda brings everything together if that makes any sense! Try and choose something that's a source of complex carbohydrates as it'll keep you fuller for longer, won't spike your blood sugars, and it'll be higher in fiber too! Think brown rice (instead of white rice!), quinoa, couscous, buckwheat, etc. Whatever you like!
  2. Plant Protein - I hate whenever I see people always being like "protein, protein, protein" as if it's the most important thing in the world, it's not! Usually those people focus only on protein and forget about carbohydrates which is absolutely ridiculous! But long story short, 'plant protein' was the only thing I could think of to describe this section of the buddha bowl haha! Think beans, lentils, tofu, tempeh, etc, in whatever shape or form you like! Why not try some spicy roasted chickpeas or some black beans in a creamy sauce mmm.
  3. Greens - Massive shoutout to greens for being so cool. Fun fact: I used to hate any type of green vegetable and I never understood people who claimed to like spinach etc, and now I'm one of those people ahaha! I always try to have a large handful of greens in any buddha bowl I make, as it always adds a fab colour, a groovy texture, and of course loads of important nutrients! I usually don't cook them greens as it ensures that the nutrients aren't lost during cooking, and it adds a lovely crunch. Add some lemon juice or lime juice just before serving as it adds a nice flavour and (fun science fact alert) the vitamin C in the citrus juice increases the bioavailability of the iron in the greens #oh #yes. Try spinach, kale, sprouts (like alfalfa sprouts, bean sprouts, etc), or whatever greens you like!
  4. Veg - Choose any vegetables you want, in any shape or form, the more veg the better! To get a cool mixture of textures try having some raw veg and some cooked veg, if you want like! Use whatever vegetables you have lying around the kitchen and get creative with flavours! Why not try a raw carrot salad or roasted butternut squash or a lentil dahl with courgette or curried aubergine, or a Mexican chili with sweet potatoes, etc, the list is endless!
  5. Extras - The 'Extras' section is just everything else that didn't fit in any of the other sections ahaha! This section is anything you can throw on top of your buddha bowl when you're ready to eat! Try anything you want, experiment, have fun! Why not try some hummus or guacamole or flaked almonds or lemon juice or a drizzle of oil or some goji berries or sesame seeds. 

Top tip to up your buddha bowl game: Try and get as many different colours as possible in your buddha bowl. Not only will it look fab and very Instagram-able, it'll make sure you're getting a wide variety of vitamins, minerals, and all dem nutrients #score.

Here are 3 samples of buddha bowls that you can try if you want, hopefully they inspire you a bit to experiment with different flavours, textures, and loads of different types of veg!

These examples have all 5 parts that I explained above, each example goes like:
Grain//Plant Protein//Greens//Veg//Extras
  1. Bowl #1: Brown rice//Red lentil dahl//Spinach with lemon juice//Roasted butternut squash//Hummus
  2. Bowl #2: Quinoa//Roasted curried chickpeas//Wilted kale with soy sauce//Sweet potato wedges//Pumpkin seeds and sesame seeds
  3. Bowl #3: Brown rice//Quinoa and kidney bean chili//Rocket with lime juice//Maple roasted carrots//Guacamole

As per usual I have too many pictures of the buddha bowls I've eaten ahaha, I just like taking pictures of my food okay?!
Here are some more pictures:

Hopefully this blog post has inspired you some bit to make a buddha bowl some time! If you've never made one I'd say go for it!!! They're such good craic to make and seriously tasty!
I'd love to see what combinations you come up with, let me know over on Instagram and use the hashtag #plantpoweredhuman (if ya want haha!) or you can send me an email to
Happy cooking!
Big love,

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