What is a buddha bowl?
Before I get into today’s delicious and healthy recipe I want to talk about buddha bowls! What is a buddha bowl exactly? Here’s the definition according to Wikipedia: “A Buddha bowl is a vegetarian meal served on a single bowl or high-rimmed plate, which consists of little dishes, served cold. The dishes are a combination of healthy whole grains such as quinoa or brown rice, plant proteins such as chick peas or tofu and vegetables.” and while this definition makes sense, I’ve also seen buddha bowls (or hippie bowls or macro bowls) that contain meat too, so I think it is really up to the individual buddha bowl creator! The key is that the bowl contains several individual components that come together wonderfully as one hearty dish. There are several essential components (via Huffington Post), most importantly – grains, veggies (raw or roasted), some sort of protein (beans, tofu, tempeh, or a meat), leafy greens, seeds, and a delicious dressing or sauce!
The best part is that there is literally a bajillion different ways you can make a buddha bowl. It’s a perfect way to get creative in the kitchen and truly a foodies dream!
The Roasted Veggie Winter Buddha Bowl!
If you saw my Winter Salad and Winter Bowl recipe roundup post from a couple weeks ago, you saw I listed a few other varieties of buddha bowls in that roundup. It’s so neat to see all the ways this delicious and nourishing dish can be created!
For this Roasted Veggie Winter Buddha Bowl with Chicken I decided to bring in a whole lot of seasonal ingredients including sweet potato, spinach, and broccoli, as well as warm roasted chicken, cauliflower, hearty chickpeas, sunflower seeds, hemp seeds, and my favourite paleo ranch dressing (by Primal Kitchen). No, I didn’t make my own dressing for this bowl because well, I do what I can. Life can be a bit chaotic some days as a working mama so I make healthy meals and also give myself some grace and use healthy bottled dressings from time to time!
One of my favorite things about a “winter inspired” buddha bowl is the combination of roasted, hearty, warming ingredients mixed with fresh ingredients like the fresh spinach in this dish. It’s the perfect balance of warm and fresh, which makes the dish filling but not too heavy. In this bowl the roasted broccoli, cauliflower, sweet potato, and chicken breast are super flavourful and constant great with the crisp spinach, chickpeas, and crunchy pumpkin and hemp seeds.
With the same concept of a “macro bowl” this buddha bowl recipe has a nice balance of macronutrients too. Healthy fats in the olive oil used for roasting and the oil in the dressing and the seeds, protein from the chicken and chickpeas, and carbohydrates from the chickpeas, sweet potatoes, and other vegetables. Every nutrient category being met! I’m totally a “checkmark” person so it makes me kind of giddy when all the macronutrient categories are nicely checked off in a meal!
We are gearing up to head to Maui in a couple weeks (…I’m literally happy dancing in my chair right now), and while I am sooo, so ready for ahi tuna tacos, fresh pineapple, mai tai’s, and poke, in the meantime I’ll be filling up and warming up with delicious buddha bowls like this one. I’m also just nearing the end of my 10-Day Green Smoothie Cleanse that I started myself on February 4th, and while I’m loving my daily green smoothie, it’s also nice to have a warm, nourishing meal in the day too.
P.S. Did you get the 10-day Green Smoothie Cleanse yet? You can do the cleanse whenever you want, as often as you want, and I’ll tell you from my own experience – you’ll feel ammmmazinnnng! Check it out here: The 10-Day Green Smoothie Cleanse.
Have you ever made a Buddha Bowl (or a Macro Bowl)? What’s your favourite combination of ingredients? I’d love to read about it in the comments below!
- 1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
- 1 6 ounce chicken breast (or swap for 6 ounces of extra firm tofu or tempeh)
- 1 cup cauliflower florets
- 1 cup broccoli florets
- ½ cup diced sweet potato
- pinch of salt
- pinch of pepper
- ½ cup cooked chickpeas (canned is fine, preferably organic)
- 2 cups fresh spinach
- 1 tablespoon sunflower seeds
- 1 teaspoon hemp seeds
- 2 tablespoons of your dressing of choice (paleo ranch, creamy balsamic, lemon garlic, Thai peanut, etc.)
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Line a large baking pan with parchment paper.
- Season the chicken breast with salt and pepper and other seasonings of choice (if using tofu or tempeh, do the same)
- In a small skillet, heat ½ tablespoon olive oil over medium-high heat and sear the chicken breast for 2-3 minutes on both sides to brown each side but not cook the chicken breast entirely through (if using tofu or tempeh, sear until just browned then set aside and keep warm - you do not need to add the tempeh or tofu to the oven to roast!)
- In a large bowl add the cauliflower, broccoli, and diced sweet potato and add in the remaining ½ tablespoon of olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper.
- Toss the vegetables with the oil to coat and spread evenly over the baking pan.
- Place the browned chicken breast in the middle of the pan among the vegetables and sweet potato.
- Bake for 20 minutes or until chicken is completely cooked through and the vegetables are just browning (check periodically to make sure the vegetables aren't burning, if they are getting too browned, take them off the pan, and place the pan back in the oven to finish roasting the chicken breast and sweet potatoes).
- While everything is roasting, add the spinach to a serving dish/bowl.
- Once the chicken and vegetables are done, remove from the oven, slice the chicken breast, and arrange the vegetables and chicken over the spinach in the serving dish.
- Add in the chickpeas then sprinkle with the sunflower seeds and hemp seeds.
- Finish by drizzling the dressing over everything.
Be sure to pin the photo below to save this delicious winter buddha bowl recipe for later and of course, share the love!
Have a lovely Sunday,
Christal // NITK