This technique makes creating a mid-day lunch or dinner snack easy. It also helps with creating a variety in your meals.
What I like to do is put various toppings together into containers and add the salad dressing too. Ideally, choose any ingredients that you would like to marinate in the salad dressing. For me, this is everything other than nuts and soft lettuces, but I will add kale and cabbages because they are tougher lettuces.
Toppings in this photo: beans – edamame and chickpeas, fresh sweet corn, zucchini, artichokes, bell peppers and olives.
There are so many vegetable toppings for you to choose from. For more ideas visit the FREE DOWNLOADS page to get access to the “Delicious – ‘No Fail’ Salads” Guide. Also, check out these delicious oil-free salad dressings.
Tex-Mex is my favorite without a doubt. I really enjoy corn tortillas, and my preference is organic corn tortillas. Yet, it’s so difficult to find organic corn tortillas or the right organic corn meal (masa) to make my own tortillas (still looking though). But this tortilla recipe is just as satisfying. It’s very mild tasting so it would make a good wrap for anything you wish to put inside.
The original recipe is from Elavegan, but when I didn’t have any chickpea flour I decided to try fresh, cooked chickpeas instead – and it worked!
Polenta is a corn-meal porridge. You can top polenta with anything you like which makes it a delicious options for breakfast, lunch and even dinner.
Polenta is identified as a yellow corn-meal. The way it’s process produces a more whole form of what many know as grits and contains 6 g of fiber. ( The most popular form of grits only have .7 g – yet I believe there is a white corn that can be used to create white polenta “grits” which reserves the whole kernels.
If cooking on the stove-top it takes about 30 minutes. Use 1 cup of polenta to 6 cups of water.
But I prefer the much easier option of using an Instant Pot. This recipe makes 4 – 6 servings.
1 cup polenta
6 cups water or broth
Vegetable Toppings: (in photo)
`1 bell pepper
2 stalks green onion
8 ounces mushrooms
4 ounces cherry tomatoes
4 cups spinach
Salt, pepper and crushed red pepper (optional)
Directions: (for Instant Pot)
Add polenta, water and sprinkle with a little salt (optional) into Instant Pot and stir.
Cook for 10 minutes (manually set or use ‘Rice’ button).
After time is up, Press ‘Cancel’ to switch to ‘Off’ and allow natural pressure release (usually 10/15 minutes).
Stir to combine water and corn-meal. Using a whisk makes this easier.
Heat griddle or pan on stove-top.
Add 1 tsp of oil and/or 2 TBS water to the pan.
Add all vegetables except for spinach and stir-fry (stir-steam) until desired tenderness, sprinkle with seasonings of choice.
Remove vegetables to a plate, turn off heat, add spinach and allow to wilt. (Adding a bit of water to create steam will help spinach wilt.)
Serve by adding polenta to a dish and topping with the vegetables.
I think I have been creating these all along prior to the term “Buddha Bowl” becoming popular. This is my second “go to” option when trying to determine what to eat next. My first is plant-based Tex-Mex meals. (I live in Texas y’all!)
The Buddha Bowl I prepared today uses quinoa as the base! I love quinoa for so many reasons and healthy ones too. It’s gluten-free and high in protein (a concern for some when embarking on a plant-based eating plan). I had roasted sweet potatoes using my favorite recipe. I had a bunch of colorful Swiss chard that I needed to prepare and hummus (which I practically keep on hand at all times). So I threw all of these “leftovers” together and created a very satisfying lunch.
pre-soak 1 – 2 hours for better nutrient absorption
Diced and seasoned with cumin, turmeric, salt, paprika, chili powder, garlic (sprinkled on as you like). Toss with a little coconut oil (barely oil them) and bake 350 – 400 degrees Farenheit
Saute green onions and bell peppers in water until soft. Add tomatoes and Swiss chard until wilted. Squeeze fresh lemon juice on top
Seasonings: cumin, lemon juice, tahini, roasted red peppers, salt/pepper and sometimes olives
Hey, here are some ingredient ideas for a Tex-Mex Budha Bowl!
This was really yummy. The texture of the eggplant mixed with diced tomatoes was right on target in this marinara sauce. I made the sauce in my InstantPot (love that appliance).
I cut the eggplant into cubes and just added it to the pot along with tomatoes and other seasonings and voila! I was done…
…except for the cooking of the pasta. Sometimes I cook the pasta in the Instant Pot too, but lately I seem to have trouble with getting perfect pasta …and my guess is that it’s probably because I was cooking gluten-free pasta. I think the better outcome has been with wheat pasta. (If anyone has any helpful hints on cooking gluten-free pasta in the InstantPot, please let me know. Thanks in advance.)
Back to the sauce..I cooked the eggplant until it was mushy. I liked it best this way because it was easy to combine with the tomatoes. The mixture of these two vegetables are superb. Yet, I call this a marinara because it’s very light vs. being more dense and doesn’t have any tomato paste which would make the sauce thicker.
This recipe makes about 2 – 3 servings. You can easily double it. Ingredients: 1 small eggplant 1 small can of diced tomatoes 1/2 cup diced onions 1/8 cup of chopped bell peppers (your choice) 1 clove garlic, minced 1/4 to 1/2 tsp salt 1 tsp or so of dried herbs (basil, oregano, Italian herb mix,
spinach to stir into pot after cooking or directly onto the plate (I prefer fresh)
Instant Pot Directions:
Put all ingredients into the inner pot.
Press manual, then adjust settings to 6 minutes.
Allow natural release (if you have enough time to wait)
Stir in spinach (optional)
Cook onion and garlic on low heat until soft. I prefer using water to steam the vegetables, so that I don’t have to add oils to cook with.
Add eggplant and a little salt to help soften, then cook about 5 minutes while stirring frequently.
Add diced tomatoes and remaining seasonings. Cook, covered over low heat until everything is very soft and (I prefer) mushy. Make sure your pan isn’t too high and use a small burner so the sauce doesn’t burn. This step may take about 10 more minutes.
Stir in spinach (optional).
Note: That is a corn-based pasta in the photo. Gluten free pastas that contain corn seem to cook the best.
I prepared this in my InstantPot. But I’m sure a pot on the stove top will work just as well. This was quick and easy. The perfect warm and satisfying meal for the cold night on which I prepared it. (Note: this recipe was based on a recipe I saw at Pinch of Yum, but I added a few things.)
4 green onions (about 1/3 cup),chopped
1jalapeño,minced (add depending on the spice level you want)
3 mediumsweet potatoes,peeled and cubed
1 cup garbanzo/chickpeas, cooked
1 14-ounce canfire roasted tomatoes
1 14-ounce cancoconut milk
2/3 cupwater for InstantPot or up to 1 1/2 if on stove top
1 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 – 1/2 cupchopped peanuts (or cashews)
2 x 2 strip of Kombu for added minerals
1/4 cup peanut butter (or cashew butter) You can also take some of the soup broth and blend with peanuts (or cashews) to thicken the soup.
1-2 cups kale, stems removed, chopped (or any other dark leafy greens: collards, chard)
1 – 2 tsp miso paste (for added flavor)
Place all ingredients in InstantPot and cook for 10 minutes or add to a pot on the stove top and cook until potatoes are tender.
Add the “after cooked” ingredients. If using InstantPot, after quick or natural release.
I usually cook a large batch of beans and freeze whatever I don’t use immediately. So, for this recipe the only ingredient that I had to make was the “Not-So” Cheese Sauce that I found in the Vitamix recipe book. If you have the opportunity to purchase a Vitamix you should definitely do so. You won’t regret it. I think I’ve owned mine for about 7 years and the only part I have replaced is the rubber top recently because it wasn’t fitting as snugly as it did when I first purchased it (6 years ago).
I pulled these tacos together rather quickly. The corn tortillas are Tortilla Land brand that I find in my local. The are uncooked and I prepare them on the griddle that I keep on the left side of my stove-top mostly for this purpose (and cooking pancakes just as often).
Tortilla Land corn tortillas (or make your own using masa flour)
black beans (red beans or pinto beans would also be good, canned is fine – just rinse them)