Buddha bowls are swiftly becoming a Get Healthy U favorite for mealtime. But like many others, when first introduced to the concept of Buddha bowls, I assumed it must have some religious connotations. But upon further digging, there’s no such correlation. Rather a Buddha Bowl is, in fact, “a bowl which is packed so full that it has a rounded ‘belly’ appearance on the top much like the belly of a buddha.” So what do you fill a Buddha Bowl with? Glad you asked. It is LOADED with good-for-you ingredients broken down primarily into a grain, veggie, protein and dressing/sauce. But one of the best things about Buddha Bowls is how varied they can be. I’ve broken down the top 7 Buddha bowl recipes you need to try and how each of them are made.
How To Make a Buddha Bowl
For starters, let’s construct a basic Buddha bowl. Not every Buddha bowl has to contain the following five steps, but you’ll see many constructed in this way. And it’s a great place to start if you’re new to Buddha bowl recipes as it provides a perfectly balanced meal!
Step 1: Pick a base: namely a grain or green. Examples: quinoa, farro, sautéed swiss chard, spinach, brown rice, etc.
Step 2: Pick your toppings: namely lots of vegetables. Examples: broccoli, Brussels sprouts, carrots, mushrooms, cauliflower, sweet potatoes, etc.
Step 3: Pick your protein: meat or other. Examples: chicken breast, ground beef, chickpeas, tofu, etc.
Step 4: Pick a healthy fat: they’re delicious and keep you satisfied! Examples: avocado, nuts, seeds, olive oil etc.
Step 5: Pick your dressing or sauce: something to bring it all together! Examples: hummus, sriracha, ranch, etc.
Our Favorite Buddha Bowl Recipes
Basic Buddha Bowl Recipe
A simple and easy buddha bowl, this delicious meal provides all the nutrients and taste you want in a meal. Use about a half cup of quinoa at the base of your bowl, top with steamed or roasted broccoli, carrots and sweet potatoes, add a couple scoops of chickpeas for protein and fiber, avocado for healthy fats and finally a dollop of hummus! This would make a great meal prep recipe too – prep several on Sunday and you’ve got lunches all week!
Toppings: Steamed Broccoli, Steamed Carrots, Roasted Sweet Potatoes
Healthy Fat: Avocado
Roasted Salmon & Veggie Bowl
Get your Omega-3s with this salmon and veggie buddha bowl. It’s a great way to use leftover cooked salmon and incredibly healthy too! We made it into a warming, comforting meal with Brussels sprouts, mushrooms and sweet potatoes but you can use whatever veggies you have on hand! But whatever veggies you use, make sure to top it with our cilantro avocado green sauce! It’s so fresh, flavorful and pairs perfectly with the cooked salmon.
Toppings: Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Sautèed Mushrooms, Roasted Sweet Potatoes
Sauce: Cilantro Avocado Green Sauce
- 1/2 avocado
- 2 tablespoons Greek yogurt
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 heaping handful cilantro
- 1/4 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- juice from half a lime
- juice from half a lemon
(Blend all ingredients in a food processor or blender.)
Give your Buddha bowl a thai twist with these delicious flavors. It starts with a base of coconut quinoa, made by using coconut milk instead of water when cooking your quinoa, and then topped with some roasted veggies and a crunchy cabbage slaw tossed in a soy ginger thai sauce. And of course, top with peanuts and a bit of peanut butter to finish off the whole meal!
Base: Coconut Quinoa
Toppings: Roasted Veggies (sweet potato, carrots), Purple Cabbage Slaw (edamame, purple cabbage, red pepper)
Healthy Fat: Peanuts, Peanut Butter
Sauce: Soy Ginger Thai Sauce
This buddha bowl puts veggies at center stage using spaghetti squash as the base instead of the typical grain. This recipe also uses good-for-you ingredients like fresh tomatoes, green onion and avocado for a boost of healthy fats. Plus, the spaghetti squash makes the perfect vehicle to absorb the rich and creamy cauliflower Alfredo sauce and egg yolk. Oh, and did I mention bacon?!
Base: Spaghetti Squash
Toppings: Tomato, Green Onion
Protein: Fried Egg, Bacon
Healthy Fat: Avocado
Sauce: Cauliflower Alfredo Sauce
Cobb Salad Buddha Bowl
Everyone loves a good Cobb Salad. Now, you can make your Buddha bowl with all the flavors of a cobb but in a slightly different way! Instead of just using romaine or another cold green, sauté some swiss chard or spinach for the bottom. Then top with corn, tomatoes, hard boiled, eggs, bacon, avocado and our buttermilk ranch!
Base: Sauteed Swiss Chard
Toppings: Corn, Tomatoes
Protein: Hard boiled eggs, Bacon
Healthy Fat: Avocado
Sauce: Buttermilk Ranch
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- 1/4 cup mayo
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic
- 2 green onions, chopped
- 2 tablespoon fresh dill, chopped
(Mix all ingredients together.)
Never seen black rice before? It’s actually lower in calories and carbs than brown rice and higher in fiber and protein! Crazy, huh? Top it with cooked pumpkin, creamy goat cheese, pepitas for crunch, cilantro and Harissa: a traditional Moroccan red pepper sauce.
Base: Black Rice
Toppings: Pumpkin, Goat Cheese, Cilantro
Healthy Fat: Pepitas
Southwestern Style Buddha Bowl
Last but definitely not least, these southwestern style buddha bowl packs major flavor. Use a mix of brown rice and quinoa on the bottom, then load it with delicious vegetables like sliced red pepper, corn and tomatoes; add some pinto beans for a hit of fiber, chicken breast for protein, avocado for a healthy fat, a bit of shredded cheddar and finally a good drizzle of Sriracha Mayo.
Base: Quinoa & Brown Rice Mix
Toppings: Red Pepper, Corn, Pinto Beans, Tomatoes, Cheddar Cheese
Protein: Chicken Breast
Healthy Fat: Avocado
Sauce: Sriracha Mayo
- 1 1/2 tablespoons mayo
- 1 1/2 tablespoon plain Greek yogurt
- 1 tablespoon sweet chili sauce
- 3/4 tablespoon sriracha
- 1/2 teaspoon honey
(Combine all ingredients together.)
We’d love to hear what Buddha Bowls you’re making. Sometimes the best recipes come from simply using whatever leftovers you have in the fridge! We’d love to hear from you in the comments below.