Truth be told, I've never been one to prep meals. I haven't done this since college when I first became vegan. It was very helpful for me to pack lunches ahead of time during my long Conservatory days and because I was newly vegan, I didn't get bored eating the same thing every day. Fast forward 4.5 years, I live in New York City and am lucky enough to have a flexible schedule which allows me to make lunch at home most days.
That said, as I began my third round of my clean eating challenge, I spent a lot of time pinning gorgeous vegan Macro bowls (or Buddha bowls.) I always love the idea of making these, but I tell myself it's too much work for one bowl of food. That's when it hit me - I could prep 4 Buddha bowls all at once and set myself up for clean eating success!!
So, what is a Macro Bowl?
"Similar to a rice bowl and a simplified form of balanced eating, they’re typically comprised of a grain base, raw or cooked veggies, a protein of your choice and a healthy fat like avocado, hummus or a tasty homemade dressing." Source
Why is it such a good meal to prep ahead?
Many of the components that make up our bowl can be cooked or purchased in large batches. For instant in these bowls, I used quinoa, sweet potato, chickpeas, and kale which can all be prepped ahead of time. I top each bowl off with half an avocado and a bit of Sauerkraut. I recommend packing both of those on the side for the best (re: least soggy) results!
What's the nutritional value?
These bowls are POWERFUL. The quinoa, chickpeas, and sweet potatoes combined offer 15 grams of protein per serving. The healthy fat from the avocado keeps you full. Kale is a great source of calcium, vitamins B, E and more!
Are they cost effective?
These bowls are ridiculously cost effective (coming out to under $5 a piece) since everything can be bought in bulk. I cooked an entire box of quinoa and only used about half of it for these bowls which means I still have plenty leftover for other tasty meals throughout the week!
How much time will it take me to make them?
Less than 45 minutes. I understand that we are all short on time but I'd say 45 minutes for 4 meals is pretty amazing.
I photographed these bowls with fruit and veggies on the side. It is definitely helpful for me when purchasing food to average about 2 pieces of whole fruit a day and a cup of raw veggies to eat with hummus. Also not photographed, I am sure to keep plenty of healthy nuts on hand for a quick pick-me-up.
Sweet Potato, Chickpea, QUinoa Buddha Bowls
PREP TIME: 20 minutes
COOK TIME: 25 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 45 minutes.
1/2 cup cooked quinoa
1/2 cup cooked chickpeas
1 cup raw kale
1 tbsp Sauerkraut
1 small roasted sweet potato
Top with fresh lemon juice, tahini, and spices
1. Cook quinoa
2. Wash and chop sweet potatoes into small circles or squares
3. Roast sweet potatoes for 25 minutes (flipping once halfway through) at 400F
4. Allow sweet potatoes and quinoa to cool before assembling and refrigerating bowls