Here’s how to make a grain bowl! Pair a whole grain, protein and veggies with this amazing tahini sauce to make a healthy, fast and easy meal.
Want to make a grain bowl? Bowl meals are so popular these days, and often they’re on our table because it’s one of the easiest ways to turn random ingredients into a healthy dinner! But here’s the thing: you can’t just throw anything into a bowl. A good grain bowl has to be well-seasoned, and play up contrasts in color, texture and flavor. It’s got to have enough protein to keep you full, and a great sauce to bring it all together. Yes, there are rules to grain bowls! (Kind of.) We’ll talk you through a few steps, and then show you our favorite grain bowl that makes a fast and easy dinner in 30 minutes.
A good grain bowl has four main elements, and plays up the contrasts between these ingredients. If you’d like, you can top with some extras (see below). A grain bowl features these major elements:
When you choose the elements for your grain bowl, you’ll have to keep contrasts in mind! Think about textures, colors, and flavors as you pick out each of the elements. You don’t want a bowl that’s all mushy, drab, or all the same flavor profile.
This easy grain bowl is Mediterranean-inspired and takes just 30 minutes to make into a healthy lunch or dinner! Because some grains can take longer to cook, this concept can often take longer than 30 minutes if you make them all at once.
For the grain
- Seasoned Quinoa (shown here)
- White or Brown Rice (season like the quinoa)
- Bulgur Wheat
For the grain bowl
- 2 15-ounce can chickpeas*
- 2 small garlic cloves
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika or regular paprika
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 recipe Tahini Sauce
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes
- 1 English cucumber
- 1/2 cup Kalamata olives (optional)
- 1/4 red onion
- Make the grain: Go to Seasoned Quinoa to make the quinoa, or follow the other whole grain recipes listed above. The quinoa takes about 25 minutes total, so use the cook time to prepare the remaining ingredients.
- Make the chickpeas: Drain and rinse the chickpeas. Mince the garlic. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 minute until fragrant but before it browns. Add the chickpeas, smoked paprika, salt, and several grinds of black pepper. Cook 2 minutes until warmed through.
- Make the sauce: Make the Tahini Sauce. (Or, try Lemon Dill Sauce or Creamy Cilantro Sauce.)
- Prep the veggies: Slice the tomatoes in half. Slice the cucumber. Slice the red onion.
- Assemble the bowls: Place the quinoa and chickpeas in the bowl. Add the fresh veggies and drizzle with the sauce.
*This makes a solid 4 to 6 servings of protein. If you’re cooking for 1 or 2, make half this recipe (or go to Easy Canned Chickpeas.)
You can read full article and recipes here: https://www.acouplecooks.com/easy-grain-bowl/