Wednesday, January 04, 2017

Sweet Potato, Kale and Wheat Berry Citrus Buddha Bowls

My readers know that I'm a sucker for loaded salads, arranged salads and salad bowls. I particularly love the inclusion of whole grains, beans or the like in them. Have you heard of Buddha Bowls? A Buddha Bowl is, basically, a form of a loaded salad. It, typically, includes some type of cooked grain (or legume), lots of chopped vegetables, some greens of some sort, sometimes fruit and nuts/seeds. It's usually topped with a sauce or dressing. Basically, I've come to find that I can pretty much throw whatever wholesome foods and/or healthful leftovers that I have on hand together to create something magical. And, these types of all-in-one meals are perfect for those of us trying to be mindful of making healthy food decisions.

So many make majestic and often extreme resolutions at the start of each new year. For me, I have committed to simply eating more "intentionally" in 2017. It's not about dieting, restricting carbs, omitting sugar or cutting calories. Rather, I'm taking a more conscientious, vigilant approach to what I feed myself. I am pledging to eat more wholesome, "real" foods. And, I'm making more of an effort to include way, way more vegetables into every meal.

Working from home and living a busy life with kids means that a string cheese and a protein bar is often my lunch. While not entirely bad, it just doesn't provide me the nutrition that I know that I need on a daily basis. So, I've set out to be more thoughtful with what I consume ... taking time to meal prep for myself more and spending a little time making myself healthy meals - especially lunches since that meal is the one I find that I skip or skimp on the most.

Buddha Bowls are amazing for me. I just love how versatile they can be. And, I love how creative I can be when making them. This recipe is a good starting point if you're new to the BB game. I'd love to hear if you've tried making your own at home ... and what your favorite combination of ingredients/components is.

Yields 2 servings/bowls.



1/2 cup wheat berries
2 cups hot water
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt


2 sweet potatoes, scrubbed, unpeeled and cut into small chunks
2 - 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Kosher salt
Freshly-ground black pepper
3 - 4 cups kale (amount once removed from stems)


1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
1/4 cup mayonnaise (sub more yogurt if not using mayo)
1/4 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon (or more per preference) chili powder
2 teaspoons pure maple syrup


1 orange, peeled and segmented
4 - 5 green onions, sliced
1/2 cup walnuts
1 tablespoon sesame seeds


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Prepare wheat berries by combining hot water and wheat berries in a small saucepan over high heat. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low and cook - stirring every few minutes - for 35 - 45 minutes or until just-tender. If needed, add more hot water during cooking. Once cooked, remove from burner and stir in 1/2 teaspoon salt. Set aside to slightly cool.

Meanwhile, line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Lay sweet potato chunks out onto 1/2 the pan. Drizzle with about 2 tablespoons oil. Season with salt and pepper. Toss with hands or spatula lightly to coat potatoes on all sides. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar. Roast for ten minutes. Flip potatoes. Roast additional ten minutes.

Add torn kale to other 1/2 of pan. Drizzle with about 1 tablespoon oil. Season lightly with salt and pepper.

Roast for 5 minutes or until edges of kale just start to crisp.

Remove from oven. Set aside.

Meanwhile, mix sauce ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside. If you prefer a thinner sauce (more in the style of a "salad dressing," thin sauce with a little milk or water.)

Assemble Buddha Bowls by dividing kale, sweet potatoes, wheat berries, orange segments, green onions, walnuts and sauce between two bowls. Sprinkle each bowl with 1/2 tablespoon sesame seeds. Serve.

1 comment :

  1. Oh YUM! Will try this with the ham I’m cooking later this week – it looks delicious … and simple!