This #MeatlessMonday “Buddha bowl” is all about heart health! When skipping meat and dairy, you’re already giving your body a break from harmful saturated fat and cholesterol, but this particular recipe is loaded with heart-health boosting ingredients as well!
But, first, what is a Buddha bowl?
Think of it as your traditional dinner plate, just reframed – combining healthy grains, veggies, a protein source, a ‘sauce’ for tying the flavors together and a crunchy topping for some pop! Buddha bowls are often described with words like “hearty” or “nourishing”, and recent studies also goes to suggest that food served in bowls may make us fill “fuller” and more satisfied, and that they serve as important visual cues to prevent over-eating.
Our savory Buddha bowl is the perfect way to divulge in some serious superfood goodness with playful, Asian-inspired flavors, and provides an opportunity to incorporate breakfast leftovers with the reuse of steel cut oats for a no hassle, quick dinner solution that leaves your taste buds and your stomach happy.
Your healthy grain in this dish is steel cut oats, which are high in soluble fiber, helping lower cholesterol by removing fatty acids from the blood stream and slowing blood glucose levels. This bowl also features avocados packed with healthy fats that can lower the risk of heart disease. Leafy greens and fibrous vegetables (like cabbage in kimchi and other fermented foods) are high in antioxidants, fiber, vitamins, and minerals, while the adzuki beans are a wonderful source of cholesterol-free protein and help control blood sugar. Lastly, the cashew nuts in the zesty, tangy dressing serve up zero cholesterol. Combine all of this in an amazingly warm and satisfying bowl for elevated plant-powered nutrition!
Savory Oatmeal Buddha Bowl
Prep time: 10 minutes | Total time: 40 minutes**
- 1 tbs. coconut oil
- 1 garlic clove, peeled and minced
- 1 c. steel cut oats
- ½ tsp. salt
- 3 c. water
- 3 green onions, thinly sliced
- 1 bunch kale, destemmed and roughly chopped
- 1 tsp. flax oil (or olive oil)
- 1 tsp. lemon juice
- 1 (13.5 oz.) can adzuki beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 avocado
- 1 c. raw kimchi
- ½ c. pea shoots
- 1 sheet nori seaweed, cut into thin strips
- Garlic Orange Cashew sauce for taste (optional)
FOR THE OATS
In a quart-sized pot, heat the coconut oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and let cook for about a minute, or until fragrant.
Add the steel cut oats and stir until coated. Cook for another minute.
Pour in your water and salt and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 30-35 minutes, stirring occasionally.
The oats are done when they start to get creamy with a chewy texture and most of the water is absorbed.**
Remove from the heat and stir in the sliced green onions. Set aside.
**Another solution to shave down on cook time? Opt to “overnight” your oats (after oats come to a boil, turn off heat and cover the pot until your return from work) so they are ready to go when you are! Simply reheat for a minute or two with a small amount of water.
FOR THE KALE
In a large bowl, combine the chopped kale with the flax oil, lemon juice, and a pinch of salt. Using your hands, massage the kale for 1-2 minutes, until all the leaves are dark and more tender. Set aside.
TO ASSEMBLE THE BOWLS
Divide the savory oatmeal into 4 bowls. Add a handful of the massaged kale, ¼ of the adzuki beans, sliced avocado, a spoonful of raw kimchi, pea shoots, and nori strips to garnish. Top with a drizzle of the Garlic Orange Cashew Sauce (recipe below) and serve immediately.
Garlic Orange Cashew Sauce
Makes about ¾ cup
- ½ c. cashews
- 1 clove garlic, peeled
- 1 inch of ginger root
- 1 tsp. toasted sesame oil
- 3 tbs. fresh-squeezed orange juice (about ½ an orange)
- 1 tsp. maple syrup
- 2 tbs. water
- ¼ tsp. salt
- Pinch of red pepper flakes
- Freshly ground black pepper
Place the cashews in a food processor** with the garlic and ginger root and pulse a few times to break down.
Add the sesame oil, orange juice, and maple syrup and puree.
Through the top of your machine, drizzle in the water until blended, scraping down the sides as you go.
Add the salt, red pepper flakes, and black pepper to taste.
**Don’t have a food processor? No problem, try it with a high-powered blender or nutrition bullet.
By combining different spices and varied textures, your Meatless Monday dishes can be easy, delicious, and inspired! What do you like to include in your superfood bowls?