Power Bowls: Fast, Easy, & Healthy Meals
Power (Buddha) bowls are easy to prepare and the recipes are flexible—use whatever is in your refrigerator or pantry.
If you are looking for a healthy meal that can be made quickly, consider putting together a Power bowl (also known as a Buddha bowl). They’re easy to prepare and the recipes are flexible, so you can use whatever is already in your refrigerator or pantry.
A Power bowl is a combination of grains such as rice, proteins like beans and tofu, and vegetables in a single bowl. Toppings such as salsa, spices, and dressings add flavor and color. Many are vegetarian, but meat can be added too. They can be eaten warm or chilled.
Where the Name Comes From
Buddha bowls are a hot healthy eating trend, popularized by photos on Pinterest and other social media. Where does the name come from? Martha Stewart first used the term in her 2013 book Meatless. Before that, they were known as Hippie bowls, macro bowls, or grain bowls. Martha probably got her inspiration from the story of Buddha, the religious leader and teacher who lived in ancient India. For his meals, Buddha would carry a bowl which villagers would fill with whatever bits of vegetarian foods they could share.
How to Make Yours
To make a modern Power bowl, you can roast some of your favorite vegetables such as sweet potatoes and broccoli, says Kate Myerson, a registered dietitian and nutritionist who lives in Waterbury. Roast them in a 400 degree oven for 20 to 25 minutes with either canola or olive oil (but not extra virgin olive oil, as it tends to smoke at higher temperatures).
While the veggies are roasting, combine grains, black beans, and avocado in your bowl. Tofu is a great addition, but if you are new to tofu, Kate recommends buying a little of the kind that’s already seasoned or marinated to try it out first. A hardboiled egg can be another good protein to add.
Add the roasted veggies to your bowl and then top with seasonings or dressing. Kate says it’s OK to use shortcuts such as prepared dressings (in moderation) to make the Power bowls a fast and easy meal. Any leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for a couple of days, and unused ingredients can be frozen.
For a Mexican themed bowl, check out this short video of Kate preparing one in her kitchen. We hope you’ll try making one of these Power bowls, or experiment to create your own favorites.
Power/Buddha Bowl Suggestions From Kate Myerson, Registered Dietitian
|Ingredients||Options||Amount||Shortcuts & Tips|
|Grain (pick 1)||
||1 cup per serving||
|Protein (pick 2)||
||4 oz. tofu or meat and ½ cup beans||
|Veggie (pick 2 or more)||
½ cup for roasted veggies or jarred/canned
1 cup for raw veggies
|Dressing (pick 1)||
||To taste||When trying a new recipe, sometimes it’s easiest to stick with something you already know like a dressing you like. Other times, you may be feeling adventurous and want to try something new. Trust your gut, as this should feel fun and not stressful.|
|Topping (pick 1 or more)||