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Buddha bowl is a balanced, flavorful veggie meal

Buddha bowl with tahini dressing is a delicious vegetarian meal.  (Linda Gassenheimer)
By Linda Gassenheimer Tribune News Service

Here’s a flavorful vegetarian meal served in a bowl. I use several different vegetables for this meal. You can use any you have on hand. Just follow the amounts in the recipe for a balanced meal. Butternut squash is a treat this time of year, and the best part is that we can buy butternut squash cubes ready to use. I added quinoa to the bowl for its texture and high-protein content.

The dressing is made with tahini, which is a creamy paste made from ground sesame seeds. I added a little lemon juice, garlic and water to make it into a dressing. You can use any type of salad dressing instead.

Helpful hints:

•You can use butternut squash spaghetti instead of cubes.

•You can substitute brown rice for quinoa.

•You can use any type of cabbage.

Buddha Bowl

Olive oil spray

2 cups butternut squash cubes

2 cups carrots cut into cubes about same size as butternut squash

1/2 cup quinoa

1 cup water plus 1 tablespoon, divided use

1 cup reduced-sodium chickpeas, rinsed and drained

1 cup reduced-sodium canned black beans, rinsed and drained

2 cups thinly sliced red cabbage

1 cup baby kale, torn into small pieces

2 tablespoons tahini

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon minced garlic

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil and spray with olive oil spray. Add the butternut squash and carrots in one layer and spray them with the olive oil spray. When the oven reaches 450 degrees, place the tray on the middle shelf and roast the vegetables for 15 minutes. Vegetables should be soft.

Place quinoa in a sieve and run cold water over it. Add the 1 cup water and quinoa to a small saucepan, bring to a boil, lower heat to medium, cover with a lid and cook 10 minutes.

Meanwhile prepare the remaining ingredients. If using the tahini dressing, whisk the tahini, lemon juice, garlic and the remaining 1 tablespoon water together to form a sauce. Set aside.

Divide the chickpeas, black beans, cabbage and kale in half and assemble in separate areas around 2 large bowls. Add the quinoa, roasted butternut squash and carrots to the bowl. Drizzle the dressing on top.

Yield 2 servings.

Linda Gassenheimer is the author of over 30 cookbooks, including her newest, “The 12-Week Diabetes Cookbook.” Listen to Linda on and all major podcast sites. Email her at