Bowls have been a thing since long before you saw “bowl” on offer everywhere you looked. I’m a grazer, so bowls are pretty much my favorite way to eat. This super simple guide promises super easy bowl building with whatever ingredients and combos float your boat.
Bowls optimally include the following:
- Dressing, which goes on the bottom of the bowl; for this one, I made a balsamic mustard maple vinaigrette.
- Grain or starch: I used quinoa here, into which I grated a beet.
- Roasted veggies; here, I diced up some sweet potatoes.
- Raw veggies: Kale and cabbage are ideal because they’re so sturdy.
- Protein: Mine of choice was feta cheese.
- Something sweet: I had a pomegranate on hand.
- Something crunchy, and if you’re traveling, packed separately: I roasted some walnuts.
I used this recipe from Clean Eating pretty much verbatim, except that the dressing they recommend is WAY too tart for me (1/4 cup of vinegar and no oil?? that’s nuts.) So I just made your basic vinaigrette, which is pretty dark due to balsamic and maple syrup.
Now the thing with published bowl recipes is that they put them in Mason jars, which looks beautiful but has never worked for me. I like to be able to toss my salads so they really get coated in dressing, and just shaking a packed Mason jar up and down doesn’t cut it for me.
We like to do a little bowl building before a road trip, so we just layer ours in this handy plastic bowl. As noted, keep the roasted crunchiness (nuts in this case) separate and add when you eat. Soggy crunchy stuff is for the birds. Actually, watching the birds chow down on sunflower seeds right now, I must argue with myself and say birds look askance at soggy crunchy stuff, too.
Here’s how our to-go pack looks.
And here, taking with unfortunate night-time overhead lighting, is how our salad looks plated. It tasted really good. Please excuse the near-sepia tone.
Bowl Building: Inspirations and Ideas Aplenty
You can find good bowls all over online. Check out my Pinterest board for suggestions from around the web, or try one of my recipes.
Or just give bowl building a shot on your own. Enjoy!