A Buddha Bowl Recipe To Make Great Meals All Week

Written by Julie O'Brien
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Our Buddha Bowl is a super-nourishing, earthy combination of grains, greens, veggies, and two kinds of ferments — a complete and well-balanced meal in a bowl. This beautifully simple dish is a great way to use up leftover grains and veggies for a healthy dinner or lunch when you’re short on time.

Cook a big batch of your favorite grain or legume at the beginning of the week and then customize the dish to your liking with fresh or cooked veggies and other goodies all week long.

The recipe calls for Yin Yang Carrots, but any kraut you have on hand will work — better yet, use a combination. Instead of hard-boiled eggs, you could fry up eggs just before you’re ready to serve your Buddha Bowl. The avocado sauce is the finishing touch — it makes just about anything taste good and nicely complements the flavors and textures of the other ingredients.

Buddha Bowls and Avocado Sauce

Makes 4 to 6 servings


  • 4 cups spinach or other salad greens (about ½ pound)
  • 4 cups cooked quinoa or brown rice, warm
  • 4 cups cooked lentils, warm
  • 4 sheets nori, cut into thin strips
  • 4 organic, hard-boiled (or fried) eggs, sliced
  • 2 cups sliced fresh seasonal veggies (such as carrots, avocados, cucumbers, or peppers)
  • 2 to 3 cups Yin Yang Carrots (see below)

Ingredients for the sauce

  • ⅓ cup classic kraut (or sauerkraut)
  • ¼ cup roughly chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 large clove garlic, crushed
  • 1 large avocado, halved, pitted, and peeled
  • 2 tablespoons white miso paste
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 cup water
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons black sesame seeds, for garnish (optional)


1. Divide the spinach among 4 to 6 shallow bowls and top with equal amounts of quinoa and lentils, dividing them among the bowls. Finish each bowl with a few strips of nori, 1 egg, and equal amounts of the fresh veggies. Take the carrots out of the jar with a clean fork, letting any extra brine drain back into it, and divide equally among the bowls.

2. To make the sauce, put all the ingredients except the salt and pepper into a blender or food processor, and blend until smooth. Thin the dressing with additional water if needed, and season to taste with salt and pepper.

3. Drizzle a few tablespoons of the dressing over each bowl and garnish with the sesame seeds. Serve immediately.

Yin Yang Carrots

Crisp, piquant, and gingery, Yin Yang Carrots will excite even the pickiest of eaters. We won our first Good Food Award in 2011 with this culinary treat. And for good reason.

Of all of our ferments, Yin Yang Carrots are the most versatile, adapting well to the cuisines of many cultures. Tuck them into fresh spring or sushi rolls, blend them into hummus, toss them with salads and slaws, or scatter them on nachos. Try whirling them with olive oil and a dash of sesame oil, hot sauce, and tamari for a flavorful salad dressing.

We always use organic carrots because they tend to be more flavorful; however, you can make this recipe with conventionally grown carrots too.

Makes about 1 quart


  • 8 cups coarsely grated carrots (about 2 pounds)
  • 6 teaspoons sea salt
  • 2 to 4 teaspoons grated fresh ginger (leave the peel on if you’d like)


1. Put the carrots in a large bowl and sprinkle them with the salt. Use your hands to thoroughly work the salt into the carrots. When the carrots have shrunk down to about half their original volume and have generated a briny, watery base, taste them and add more salt or water if necessary. Add the ginger, starting with 2 teaspoons, making sure it’s evenly distributed throughout. Taste and add the additional ginger if a stronger flavor is desired.

2. Pack the carrots tightly into a quart jar until they’re about 2 inches below the rim, weighing them down with a weight.

3. Make sure the brine completely covers the compressed carrots by about 1 inch, and that they’re about 1 inch below the rim of the jar. Let the jar sit at room temperature, roughly 64 to 70 degrees F, topping the carrots with more brine if needed. The carrots should be ready to eat after 1 week (or let them ferment longer for a richer taste). Store them in the refrigerator for up to 6 months.

*(c)2014 By Julie O’Brien and Richard Climenhage. All rights reserved. Excerpted from Fresh & Fermented: 85 Delicious Ways to Make Fermented Carrots, Kraut, and Kimchi Part of Every Meal by permission of Sasquatch Books.

Photography by Charity Burggraaf.

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