How to build the perfect lunch bowl at home

Ever crave Cava or Sweet Green but not feel like spending the money or venturing out to get it? Me too. Pretty much all of the time. That’s why while it doesn’t seem ingenious, the task can seem a bit daunting, so here I’m laying out a step-by-step of how I recreate healthy grain and green bowls all from the comfort of my kitchen.

First, determine the things you like. Even if it seems a bit all over the place, if you like it you like it, so add a little in. Part of the fun of bowl style meals is that they can be adapted and changed easily. They can be good methods of weekly meal prep as well as a way to use up lingering produce in your fridge. Second, while you are pulling your ingredients try to keep the food pyramid in mind. It’ll help keep your bowl balanced and be an easy way to incorporate many different colors and flavors that come from vegetables. Once you’ve narrowed down what you want to use it’s time to start building your bowl. Bowls I’ve created and enjoyed in the past are shredded BBQ chicken, taco, and deconstructed hamburger. Today though I went with a simple Mediterranean style one.

First: Add your greens

For this particular bowl I used mixed greens and shredded carrots.

Second: Add your grains

For my bowls, I love using the easy microwaveable pouches of grains and lentils. Depending on how much I use, one packet will last me two to four bowls.

Next: Add your protein

My go-to proteins to add to bowls are tuna and cottage cheese. If those aren’t your favorite, try leftover grilled steak or chicken, legumes, or even other fishes like salmon or shrimp.

Fourth: Mix in a variety of veggies

For veggies, you always want as many different colors of the rainbow that you can. An easy way to do this, is to use the small sweet peppers or heirloom tomatoes for a yellow, orange, and red.

Fifth: Garnish with healthy fats and season

A small dab of plain hummus, splash of dressing, some walnuts, and S&P round out this bowl.

That’s it! Not ground breaking, but if you’re ever feeling stuck with meal ideas, bowls are a great option.

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