Super(food) Bowls

Above Image | Tempeh Taco Bowl.

The budget issue

Why drop $20 on a Buddha bowl at a restaurant when you can make your own uber-trendy meal bowls at home for half the cost (not to mention less calories)! Plus, each of these mighty bowls features an optional power-packed superfood to give them a unique health boost.

By Julie Morris
Photos by Ronald Tsang

Sweet Potato & Coconut Millet Bowls

A zesty ginger-lime vinaigrette sweetened with maple syrup brings the savory flavors of sweet potato and kale together with the tropical taste of coconut.

Serves | 4 Active | 40 minutes. Total | 55 minutes.

  • 2 tbsp coconut oil, divided
  • 2 sweet potatoes (about 11⁄2 lb), peeled and sliced crosswise into 1-inch-thick rounds or cut into 1-inch chunks
  • ¾ tsp sea salt, divided
  • ½ tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 shallots, thinly sliced
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened coconut flakes + additional for garnish
  • 3 cups cooked millet or quinoa
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds (TRY: NOW Real Food Organic Black Chia Seeds)
  • 1 bunch purple kale (or regular kale), stems and thick ribs removed and leaves torn into bite-size pieces
  • 1 15-oz BPA-free can unsalted cannellini beans, drained, rinsed and heated
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh mint, optional


  • 1 lime, zested and juiced
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp peeled and grated fresh ginger
  • 1 tbsp acai powder, optional
  • ¼ tsp sea salt

  1. Prepare vinaigrette: To a jar with a tight-fitting lid, add all dressing ingredients. Seal with lid and shake until well combined. Set aside; shake before using.
  2. Preheat oven to 400°F. Melt 1 tbsp coconut oil and pour into a large bowl. Add potatoes, ¼ tsp salt and pepper and toss to coat. Arrange in a single layer on a large rimmed baking sheet. Bake, turning once, until tender and browned, 30 to 35 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and toss with 2 tbsp of the vinaigrette.
  3. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat remaining 1 tbsp coconut oil on medium. Add shallots, coconut flakes and remaining ½ tsp salt and cook, stirring often, until shallots are softened and coconut flakes are golden, 5 to 6 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in millet and chia seeds. Cover to keep warm.
  4. In a separate bowl, massage kale with 2 tbsp of the vinaigrette until slightly softened, about 1 minute.
  5. Divide shallot mixture among bowls. Top with kale, potatoes, beans and remaining vinaigrette, dividing evenly. Sprinkle with mint (if using). Garnish with additional coconut flakes.

PER SERVING (¼ of recipe): Calories: 583, Total Fat: 21.5 g, Sat. Fat: 11 g, Monounsaturated Fat: 6 g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2.5 g, Carbs: 86 g, Fiber: 14 g, Sugars: 17 g, Protein: 16 g, Sodium: 571 mg, Cholesterol: 0 mg

Curried Cauliflower Rice Bowls with Crispy Chickpeas

Pulsing cauliflower in your food processor turns the veggie into a versatile rice substitute that’s lower in calories and carbs than rice. Here, we sauté it with Indian spices and serve with crispy chickpeas and a rich curry sauce.

Serves | 4 Active | 45 minutes. Total | 50 minutes.

  • 1 15-oz BPA-free can unsalted chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil, divided
  • ½ tsp each sea salt and ground black pepper, divided
  • ¼ tsp ground cumin
  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
  • ½ yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ tsp ground turmeric
  • 3 tbsp unsweetened dried goji berries, optional (TRY: Navitas Naturals Goji Berries)
  • 8 cups packed baby spinach
  • 2 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 2 carrots, thinly sliced into rounds, optional
  • ½ head purple cabbage, shredded, optional
  • ½ cup raw unsalted cashews, chopped, optional


  • 1 cup full-fat coconut milk
  • 1 tbsp Thai red curry paste
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • ½ tsp ground cumin

  1. Prepare curry sauce: In a small saucepan, whisk together all sauce ingredients. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to low and simmer, whisking occasionally, until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Cover; set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400°F. Using a clean towel, pat chickpeas dry, discarding any loosened skins. Melt 1 tbsp oil and pour into a large bowl. Add chickpeas, ¼ tsp each salt and pepper and cumin and toss to coat. Spread on a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet and bake, stirring occasionally, until golden brown and crispy, 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool on sheet for 10 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, in a food processor, pulse cauliflower into rice-sized pieces. In a large skillet, heat remaining 1 tbsp oil on medium. Add onion and garlic and sauté, stirring occasionally, until softened, 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in cauliflower, turmeric and remaining ¼ tsp each salt and pepper and sauté until cauliflower is softened and no liquid remains, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in goji berries (if using). Cover to keep warm.
  4. In a large saucepan on medium, heat ½ cup curry sauce. Add spinach and cook, tossing, until wilted and bright green, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in lemon juice. Divide cauliflower mixture, spinach mixture and chickpeas among bowls. If using, top with carrots, cabbage and cashews. Drizzle bowls with remaining curry sauce.

PER SERVING (1/4 of recipe): Calories: 338, Total Fat: 17 g, Sat. Fat: 15 g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1 g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 0 g, Carbs: 33 g, Fiber: 10.5 g, Sugars: 6 g, Protein: 13 g, Sodium: 510 mg, Cholesterol: 0 mg

Miso, Almond & Mushroom Soba Noodle Bowls

You won’t miss the meat in these Asian-style bowls, thanks to a generous dose of satisfying umami, a savory, meat-like taste found in mushrooms and miso paste.

Serves | 4 Active | 35 Minutes. Total | 35 minutes.

  • 2 tbsp grape seed oil, divided
  • 2 portobello mushrooms, cut into ¼-inch-thick slices
  • 2 to 4 baby bok choy, halved and cored
  • 2 cups sugar snap peas, trimmed
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into matchsticks
  • 1/8 tsp sea salt
  • 8 oz cooked soba noodles or whole-wheat spaghetti
  • 4 carrots, shredded or cut into matchsticks, divided
  • ¼ cup sliced raw unsalted almonds
  • 4 scallions, thinly sliced on the bias, optional
  • 2 tbsp hemp seeds, optional
  • 1 tbsp black sesame seeds, optional


  • 1/3 cup fresh orange juice
  • 3 tbsp smooth roasted almond butter
  • 3 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp cordyceps powder, optional (TRY: Mushroom Matrix Cordyceps Militaris Organic Powder)
  • 2½ tsp white miso paste
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • ¼ tsp onion powder
  • 1/8 tsp ground cayenne pepper

  1. Prepare sauce: In a bowl, whisk together all sauce ingredients until smooth. Set aside.
  2. In a large skillet, heat ½ tbsp oil on high. Add half of the portobellos in a single layer and cook, turning once, until golden brown, 2 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Repeat with ½ tbsp oil and remaining portobellos and add to plate.
  3. In same skillet, heat remaining 1 tbsp oil on medium. Add bok choy, cut sides down. Add peas and bell pepper and stir-fry until bok choy is slightly wilted, bell pepper is tender-crisp and peas are bright green, about 1 minute. Remove from heat and sprinkle with salt.
  4. In a separate bowl, toss together noodles, half of the carrots and ½ cup of the sauce. Divide noodle mixture, mushrooms, bok choy mixture, remaining half of carrots and almonds among bowls. If using, top with scallions, hemp seeds and sesame seeds. Drizzle bowls with remaining sauce.

PER SERVING (1/4 of recipe): Calories: 320, Total Fat: 18 g, Sat. Fat: 2 g, Monounsaturated Fat: 8 g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 7.5 g, Carbs: 35 g, Fiber: 6 g, Sugars: 12 g, Protein: 10 g, Sodium: 279 mg, Cholesterol: 0 mg

TIP: Serve this dish warm or chilled; if serving cold, be sure to rinse the noodles under cold water once they’re done cooking.

Tempeh Taco Bowl with Mango Salsa

We’re bringing back the taco bowl with this meatless take on the classic. Tempeh, made from fermented soybeans, has a nutty, mushroom-like taste and is one of our favorite vegetarian substitutes for ground beef. We’ve even cracked the code on a dairy-free chile cheese sauce–who knew hemp, nutritional yeast and chile could taste so good together?

Serves | 4 Active | 50 minutes. Total | 50 minutes.

  • 1/3 cup hemp hearts
  • 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar (TRY: Bragg Organic Apple Cider Vinegar)
  • 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • ½ tsp sea salt, divided
  • ¼ tsp chipotle chile powder
  • 1 yellow onion, quartered lengthwise
  • 2 cloves garlic (peel on)
  • 2 Roma tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 8 oz organic tempeh, crumbled
  • 2 cups cremini or white button mushrooms, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tbsp chile powder
  • 1 tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 2 tsp cacao powder, optional
  • 2 tsp each ground cumin and dried oregano
  • 2 cups cooked brown rice
  • 1 head romaine lettuce, halved lengthwise, cored and thinly sliced crosswise
  • 2 radishes, trimmed and thinly sliced, optional
  • 1 avocado, peeled, pitted and sliced, optional
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro, optional


  • 1 lime, zested and juiced
  • 1 tsp pure maple syrup
  • Pinch sea salt
  • 1 mango, peeled, pitted and diced
  • ½ red bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 1 scallion, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced

  1. Prepare salsa: In a bowl, whisk together lime zest and juice, 1 tsp maple syrup and salt. Add mango, red pepper and scallion and toss to coat. Set aside.
  2. In a blender, combine hemp seeds, vinegar, nutritional yeast, ¼ tsp salt, chipotle chile powder and 3 tbsp water and blend until completely smooth. Scrape into a separate bowl and set aside. Clean blender.
  3. Heat a large skillet on medium-high. Add onion, garlic and tomatoes and cook, turning occasionally, until dark brown and blistered, 5 to 7 minutes for garlic and 10 minutes for onion and tomatoes. Peel garlic and add to blender. To blender, add onion and tomatoes and purée until smooth. In same skillet, heat oil on medium. Add onion mixture and cook, stirring constantly, until beginning to darken, about 2 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, stir together tempeh, mushrooms, chile powder, 1 tbsp maple syrup, cacao powder (if using), cumin, oregano and remaining ¼ tsp salt. Add to onion mixture and cook, stirring often, until thickened, 5 to 7 minutes.
  5. Divide rice and lettuce among bowls. Top with tempeh mixture, drizzle with hemp mixture and sprinkle with salsa. If using, top with radishes, avocado and cilantro.

PER SERVING (1/4 of recipe): Calories: 477, Total Fat: 17.5 g, Sat. Fat: 3 g, Monounsaturated Fat: 5 g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 8 g, Carbs: 63 g, Fiber: 10 g, Sugars: 21.5 g, Protein: 24 g, Sodium: 419 mg, Cholesterol: 0 mg

Julie Morris


“Super(food!) Bowls” recipe developer Julie Morris began working in the natural foods industry over a decade ago. She is the author of five books, including the New York Times best-seller Superfood Smoothies (Sterling, 2013) and the upcoming Superfood Soups (Sterling, 2016). “Nature gives us so many options when it comes to flavors, textures and colors, so the feature was about showing the diversity of these ingredients,” she says.