Power bowls (a.k.a Buddha bowls) are my idea of the perfect meal – they’re healthy and nourishing, fresh and flavorful, simple and satisfying.
Ooh and let’s not forget, they’re sooo dang pretty.
I shared my love of power bowls – as well as my perfect power bowl formula – in this episode of Nourished, but if you don’t have time to re-watch it, here’s the basic equation:
BASE + PROTEIN + TOPPINGS + SAUCE
Generally, when it comes to a power bowl, I say the more variety the better!
Starting with the base, I choose a high-protein, high- fiber whole grain, like millet or quinoa (technically a seed, but nevertheless…), then I layer on the protein (think: beans, lentils, tempeh, tofu, nuts and seeds – or grilled organic chicken or wild-caught fish), load up on fresh toppings (like veggies, fruits, herbs, seeds etc.) and finish it off with a bangin’ sauce – mixin’ and matchin’ ingredients the whole way through.
I also like to add something green and leafy, but the true beauty of a power bowl is that you can add (or not-add) whatever you want…making the flavor and texture possibilities virtually endless.
Speaking of possibilities…
For this Quinoa Pesto Power Bowl, I decided to go a lil cray-cray – whippin’ up a batch of Basil & Spinach Pesto, picklin’ radishes and crispin’ chickpeas – so it took a tad bit longer than the usual 1-2-3 to pull it together, but boy-oh-boy was it worth it.
If you’re short on time, you can easily meal prep this bowl by cooking the quinoa and making the pesto a day or two in advance.
Quinoa Pesto Power Bowl
- 2 cups of quinoa
- 1 avocado, sliced
- ¼ cup sprouts
- ½ tablespoon chia seeds
- 1 yellow pepper, washed and sliced
- 1 tablespoon spinach and basil pesto (recipe below)
- Pickled radish (recipe below)
- Crispy chickpeas (recipe below)
- Cook quinoa according to directions listed on package.
- Prepare the pesto, radishes and chickpeas, per directions below.
- Place ¼ cup cooked quinoa into bowl.
- Assemble bowl. Layer with chickpea crispies, pickled radish, yellow peppers, and avocado slices.
- Top with sprouts, chia seeds, and pesto.
Basil and spinach Pesto:
- 2.5 oz package of basil, stems removed
- 2 large handfuls of spinach
- ¼ cup pine nuts
- 2 large garlic cloves, peeled
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- Sea salt, to taste
- Combine basil, spinach, pine nuts, garlic cloves, and olive oil in a food processor and process until a smooth consistency is reached. Add sea salt to taste.
Quick Pickled Radish:
- 1 small bunch of radishes (about 4 or 5), thinly sliced
- ¼ cup red wine vinegar
- ¼ cup water
- 1 tablespoon pure maple sugar (you can also use brown sugar or sucanat)
- Sea salt, pinch
- Whisk together red wine vinegar, water, maple sugar, and sea salt until well combined.
- Add sliced radishes to mixture and submerge.
- Pickle at room temperature for 10-30 minutes.
- 1 15 oz BPA-free can of chickpeas (garbanzo beans), rinsed
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 425°
- Toss chickpeas, olive oil, salt, and pepper together.
- Place on parchment lined baking sheet.
- Bake for 20 – 25 minutes, until golden and crispy.
Then I’d love to hear from you! Let me know what you think of this recipe – or of power bowls in general – down in the comment section below.
AND if you decide to go out on a limb and create your own loaded-power-bowl-combo, I’d love to hear all about that too. What ingredients will you/did you use for your base, protein, toppings and sauce?
Can’t wait to hear all about it!