the balance bowl ~a healthy meal made easy~

19 Feb

Creating a balanced meal in a hurry can be a bit of a challenge.

 I have the solution: The Balance Bowl

The Balance Bowl ~vegan, gluten free~ A simple solution to creating a healthy and balanced meal!

I’ve talked before about the importance of planning and prepping food to have on hand for times when you just don’t know what to make or are in a rush.  With a refrigerator stocked full of healthy ingredients, you can’t go wrong!

The Balance Bowl ~vegan, gluten free~ A simple solution to creating a healthy and balanced meal!

Take one day a week to cook a batch of quinoa, roast some vegetables, make salad dressing and sauté up some beans.

 To season chickpeas:  Add one can of rinsed and drained chickpeas to a skillet with a tablespoon of olive oil.  Add a tablespoon of paprika and sea salt to taste, saute until golden.

The Balance Bowl ~vegan, gluten free~ A simple solution to creating a healthy and balanced meal!

Keep cut up vegetables fresh by storing in an air-tight container and covering with a damp paper towel.

The Balance Bowl ~vegan, gluten free~ A simple solution to creating a healthy and balanced meal!

The key to constructing a balanced meal is having a combination of complex carbohydrates, protein, healthy fat and an abundance of greens!  This combination will keep you full longer and will help to stabilize blood sugars.

Here is how to balance your bowl…

The Balance Bowl ~vegan, gluten free~ A simple solution to creating a healthy and balanced meal!

1.  Begin with a bed of greens:

Greens – arugula, baby kale, romaine, spinach, mixed greens, red or green leaf lettuce

2.  Add as much raw veggies as you want:

Vegetables – cucumbers, shredded carrots, red cabbage, peppers, sprouts, shredded beets, radishes, tomatoes, scallions, onions, broccoli

3.  Choose 1-2 of each from the following categories:

Healthy Fat – avocado, walnuts, almonds, pine nuts, olive oil, hummus, hemp seeds, coconut flakes, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds

Protein – chickpeas, black beans, tofu, tempeh, nuts, edamame, white beans, kidney beans, (non-vegan version: hard-boiled eggs, chicken, fish)

Complex Carbohydrates – quinoa, brown rice, roasted sweet potatoes, farro, barley

4.  Optional Add-Ins:

Roasted Vegetables – asparagus, brussels sprouts, mushrooms, broccoli, cauliflower, squash, beets, corn

I like to add roasted vegetables especially in the winter for added warmth and satiety.

Fruit – pomegranate seeds, raisins, apple slices, mango, orange or grapefruit sections, dried cranberries

5.  Dressing:

Creamy Avocado Dressing

Peanut Sauce

Or, try this recipe!

Sweet Miso Dressing

1/4 cup water

4 tablespoons toasted sesame seed oil

2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

2 tablespoons white miso paste

2 tablespoons tahini

2 tablespoons maple syrup

sea salt

~Blend, drizzle and enjoy!~

The Balance Bowl ~vegan, gluten free~ A simple solution to creating a healthy and balanced meal!

We eat a variation of this meal at least 3 times a week.  It makes a satisfying dinner and can be easily packed for lunch.  Keeping cut up veggies, cooked grains, homemade dressing and seasoned beans or tofu readily available, you don’t have to put any thought into the never-ending question of “what’s for dinner?”

The Balance Bowl ~vegan, gluten free~ A simple solution to creating a healthy and balanced meal!

I hope this makes meal planning easier!

26 Responses to “the balance bowl ~a healthy meal made easy~”

  1. Helen Bobis FebamWed, 19 Feb 2014 10:34:11 -05002014-02-19T10:34:11-05:0010 28, 2013 at 9:26 p02 #

    Hello, I was wondering if you take those photos of your food? because even they look so tasty ! So far all your recipes have been a super hit at home. My daughter, who doesn’t like soup, loved the Butternut Squash Soup. Thanks for the healthier tasty experiences.

    • beginwithinnutrition FebamWed, 19 Feb 2014 11:23:15 -05002014-02-19T11:23:15-05:0011 28, 2013 at 9:26 p02 #

      That makes my day, thanks for sharing!!! I can’t take credit for the photos over the past couple of weeks…I recruited my husband, he’s the talented one with the artistic eye! I just cook 🙂

      • Helen Bobis MarpmMon, 03 Mar 2014 16:03:26 -05002014-03-03T16:03:26-05:0004 28, 2013 at 9:26 p03 #

        Your husband can cook up a tasty photo too; the recipes and photos look and taste great together. I am back for some more new recipes to try.

  2. cloudthyme FebamWed, 19 Feb 2014 11:11:55 -05002014-02-19T11:11:55-05:0011 28, 2013 at 9:26 p02 #

    This is gorgeous! Great idea.

    • beginwithinnutrition FebamWed, 19 Feb 2014 11:21:40 -05002014-02-19T11:21:40-05:0011 28, 2013 at 9:26 p02 #

      Thank you! A colorful plate always tastes good 🙂

  3. everybodylovespretty FebpmWed, 19 Feb 2014 12:13:41 -05002014-02-19T12:13:41-05:0012 28, 2013 at 9:26 p02 #

    Beautiful photos for beautiful food! I would layer these in a mason jar to take to work 🙂 Thanks for sharing.

  4. maddie FebpmWed, 19 Feb 2014 23:12:36 -05002014-02-19T23:12:36-05:0011 28, 2013 at 9:26 p02 #

    What a helpful and informational post! So glad I found your blog from foodgawker.

    • beginwithinnutrition FebpmSun, 23 Feb 2014 14:01:54 -05002014-02-23T14:01:54-05:0002 28, 2013 at 9:26 p02 #

      I’m so happy you like the post! Thank you for reading 🙂

  5. Sandra McGowan Landry FebpmThu, 20 Feb 2014 12:11:58 -05002014-02-20T12:11:58-05:0012 28, 2013 at 9:26 p02 #

    B & I are having quinoa…and whatever other veggies Ifind in the frig bin tonight. If I bury the kale with enough other tasty & colorful stuff, he is enticed! Thanks honey…and great pics Shaye!

    • beginwithinnutrition FebpmSun, 23 Feb 2014 14:00:53 -05002014-02-23T14:00:53-05:0002 28, 2013 at 9:26 p02 #

      hahaha, anything to get him to eat his veggies!

  6. Sophia | Love and Lentils FebpmFri, 21 Feb 2014 23:00:14 -05002014-02-21T23:00:14-05:0011 28, 2013 at 9:26 p02 #

    Excellent post! Lovely photos as well.

    • beginwithinnutrition FebpmSun, 23 Feb 2014 13:49:19 -05002014-02-23T13:49:19-05:0001 28, 2013 at 9:26 p02 #

      Thank you so much Sofia 🙂

  7. Corie FebamSat, 22 Feb 2014 10:35:48 -05002014-02-22T10:35:48-05:0010 28, 2013 at 9:26 p02 #

    Um………I’m confused about the inclusion of hard boiled eggs,chicken and fish above. I thought this was a vegan page, is it not?

    • beginwithinnutrition FebamSat, 22 Feb 2014 10:41:20 -05002014-02-22T10:41:20-05:0010 28, 2013 at 9:26 p02 #

      Hi Corie, thanks for stopping by! Although I encourage a plant based diet, this isn’t a strictly vegan site. I work with a number of clients on different diets so I offer substitutions to fit any lifestyle.

  8. Tasty Yummies FebpmSat, 22 Feb 2014 15:59:07 -05002014-02-22T15:59:07-05:0003 28, 2013 at 9:26 p02 #

    Thanks so much for linking up to my avocado dressing. These photos are gorgeous. I could live on bowls and bowls like this.

    • beginwithinnutrition FebpmSun, 23 Feb 2014 13:40:50 -05002014-02-23T13:40:50-05:0001 28, 2013 at 9:26 p02 #

      Thank you for your inspiration, I love your recipes!!! I agree, meals like this don’t get old! Thank you for stopping by 🙂

  9. Michelle Kuah (@esculentdreams) FebpmSat, 22 Feb 2014 17:18:54 -05002014-02-22T17:18:54-05:0005 28, 2013 at 9:26 p02 #

    Yum!! Love this concept, and thanks for breaking it down! 🙂

    • beginwithinnutrition FebpmSun, 23 Feb 2014 13:38:35 -05002014-02-23T13:38:35-05:0001 28, 2013 at 9:26 p02 #

      Hi! Thanks for reading, I’m glad I could help!

  10. Beckie FebpmSat, 22 Feb 2014 18:06:38 -05002014-02-22T18:06:38-05:0006 28, 2013 at 9:26 p02 #

    Thank you for this. I have so much trouble with what to cook or make for lunch/dinner on a regular occurance. This is such a great, easy way to make sure I have the foods available for quick preparation.

    • beginwithinnutrition FebpmSun, 23 Feb 2014 13:37:05 -05002014-02-23T13:37:05-05:0001 28, 2013 at 9:26 p02 #

      I’m happy I could help! Putting together a healthy meal in a hurry can be such a nightmare sometimes! I hope you like it as much as we do! Thanks for stopping by the blog 🙂

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