Monday, September 2, 2013

A Vegan Essential: The Bowl

Sorry this is so late! I had a very busy day full of unpacking and cleaning after getting back from my family vacation and I ended up making dinner much later than I had planned! Without further ado, enjoy!

Today I wanted to talk about a staple in my diet, "the bowl." Simply put this is an entree where a bunch of ingredients, normally a mixture of vegetables, grains, and legumes, are thrown into a bowl. There are lots of ways to make bowls and I have enjoyed many different types!

For example, on my recent road trip I enjoyed a delicious bowl at Savory Cafe and Pizzeria in Newport, OR.

This bowl was called the "Savory Bowl" with brown rice, black beans, steamed veggies, cilantro, and a tofu kelp sauce. Yummy!

Last night in Portland I enjoyed another bowl at the restaurant Prasad in the Pearl District. I had the "Urban Bowl" made with steamed kale, cabbage, sea vegetables, avocado, carrots, scallions, sesame and hemp seeds. I added some quinoa and had it with their peanut sauce. My Dad also enjoyed a bowl for dinner, the "Chili Bowl." Unfortunately I was distracted by the delicious food in front of me and so I didn't get to snap a photo, it was amazing though!

One of my most favorite bowls, at Chaco Canyon here in the University District of Seattle, is the hippie bowl, which is one of my staple orders when I visit this cafe, which is often. This bowl is made of quinoa, baked tofu, carrots, sprouts, sesame seeds and a garlic tahini dressing.

These bowls and other bowls I've had in the past have inspired me to make my own bowls at home! Here's the one I made today!

Quinoa Veggie Bowl with Tangy Peanut Dressing

This bowl is just what it sounds like and is pretty tasty!

Makes 3-4 servings

  • 4 cups veggie quinoa (recipe below)
  • Tangy peanut dressing (recipe below)
  • 1 cup sliced pepper
  • 1 cup cucumber, sliced into half moons
  • 1 1/2 cup zucchini, sliced
  • 1 cup shredded veggies (I used Trader Joe's broccoli slaw)
  • 4 handfuls spinach

All the veggie toppings


1. Prepare veggie quinoa. While it is cooking, wash and prepare veggies. 
2. Prepare dressing. 
3. Line plate or bowl with a handful of spinach, top with veggie quinoa, veggies and tangy peanut dressing. Mix and enjoy!


Note: This recipe is easily customizable. Use whatever veggies you like and have on hand. I love making this bowl with green onions and avocado as well, which I did not happen to have on hand this time around. 

Veggie Quinoa

  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 8 oz. mushrooms, diced
  • 1 cup carrot, diced
  • 2 cups dry quinoa
  • 1 sprig rosemary
  • 4 cups water


1. Wash and dice veggies. 
2. Place veggies, quinoa, rosemary, and water into a large pot and prepare as you would normal quinoa.


All done and delicious! 

Tangy Peanut Dressing

Makes about 1 cup

  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/3 cup vinegar of choice (I used raw apple cider vinegar and white balsamic vinegar)
  • 1 tbsp tamari
  • 2 tbsp non-dairy milk
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Maple syrup or other liquid sweeter, to taste (I used about 1/4 tsp)


1. Mix all ingredients except maple syrup together until they form a smooth sauce. 
2.  Add maple syrup as desired to reach desired taste.

Note: This sauce is definitely tangy, if you are looking for a more mild sauce replace all or some of the vinegar with water or more non-dairy milk to achieve your desired taste. 

All mixed up! Delicious! 


  1. I ate at Chaco Canyon when I was in Seattle and I visited Prasad in Portland! The bowl with the tofu kelp sauce looks downright elicious too.

    1. Hi! Thanks for sharing!

      I really loved eating at Prasad. I had their "Warrior" smoothie with that bowl and even went back the next morning to have it for breakfast!

      I also love Chaco Canyon, it is definitely my go to restaurant. As a college student this cafe is a great place to meet with friends or get some studying done, and it doesn't hurt that their food is downright amazing!

  2. Mmmm, bowls are the bomb! I fell in love with bowl-style meals when I visited PDX in May for Vegan Vida Con. Bowls have been a great way for me to use up leftovers. I'm lovin' your peanut dressing.

    1. Bowls are definitely my favorite way to use whatever I have on hand! I am also one who wants to put EVERYTHING in my meals (I can't make wraps since I always over-stuff them!) and so I find bowls to be a great way to satisfy that urge!

      I'm so glad you like the dressing! I love making peanut dressings because they are so easily customized and taste great in so many different meals!