Vegan Buddha Bowls with Creamy Jalapeno Dressing
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While there’s no wrong way to make a Buddha bowl, there are two keys to a killer Buddha bowl recipe: 1) season each individual component well, and 2) serve with a healthy dollop of addictive dressing. This plant-based meal takes some elbow grease and kitchen juggling, but this recipe makes enough food for nearly a week’s worth of lunches. I promise it will make eating veggies a breeze.

Yield: 4-5 servings

Time: About 45 minutes

This recipe is inspired by


For the dressing

  • 1/4 cup chickpeas, drained and rinsed

  • 1/4 cup olive oil

  • 1/4 cup almonds, chopped (we used slivered almonds without the skins for extra creaminess)

  • 1/4 cup pickled jalapenos, with their juices

  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice

  • 2 teaspoons maple syrup

  • 1 teaspoon mustard

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 3 tablespoons cold water, or more until desired consistency is reached

For the bowl

  • 1 cup brown rice, uncooked

  • 5 tablespoons olive oil, divided*

  • Salt to taste

  • Pepper to taste

  • 8-9 cloves garlic, minced (about 3 tablespoons minced garlic)

  • 6-7 large carrots, peeled and sliced into 1/3-inch “coins”

  • 12 ounces broccoli florets (about 4 cups uncooked)

  • 2 cups hearty salad greens such as kale or spinach, large stems removed

  • 2 15.5-ounce cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed, minus 1/4 cup chickpeas for the dressing

  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder

  • 1/2 large red onion, chopped

  • Red pepper flakes to taste (optional)

*For a lightened-up version, use a light drizzle of oil (just enough to coat the ingredient) in place of each tablespoon


For the dressing

  1. Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until completely smooth.

  2. Add additional cold water if necessary until the dressing is thin enough to drizzle with a spoon.

  3. Refrigerate the dressing until ready to serve.

For the bowl

  1. Prepare the rice according to package instructions. Be sure to set a timer for when the rice is finished.

  2. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

  3. In a mixing bowl, toss the carrots with one tablespoon olive oil, one tablespoon garlic, and salt and pepper to taste. Add the carrots to a large baking dish or sheet.

  4. Repeat step two with the broccoli in place of the carrots, using the same mixing bowl if desired. Keep carrots and broccoli separate on the baking dish(es) or sheet(s).

  5. Place the carrots and broccoli in the oven for 15 minutes.*

  6. While the carrots and broccoli roast, toss the greens in a clean mixing bowl with one tablespoon olive oil, one tablespoon garlic, and salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

  7. Add 1 tablespoon olive oil to a large skillet over medium heat. When the oil shimmers, add the chickpeas (minus the 1/4 cup for the dressing), cumin, chili powder, and salt and pepper to taste.

  8. Saute the chickpeas for about ten minutes, or until lightly browned and fragrant. Then, reduce the heat to the lowest setting to keep the chickpeas warm.

  9. When the carrots and broccoli have been roasting for 15 minutes, carefully add the greens to the baking dish(es) or sheet(s), again in a separate location. Roast the vegetables for an additional five minutes then reduce oven temperature to 200 degrees Fahrenheit to keep the vegetables warm.

  10. When the rice is finished cooking, add a tablespoon of olive oil and salt and pepper to taste, and stir to combine. Reduce the heat to the lowest setting to keep the rice warm.

  11. When all of the elements of the bowl have finished cooking, remove the roasted vegetables from the oven and assemble the rice, carrots, broccoli, greens, sauteed chickpeas, and fresh red onion in bowls as desired. Top with red pepper flakes and dressing to taste.

*If working with frozen broccoli, start the broccoli about five minutes before the carrots. The result will be less crisp but will still work.

Did you make this recipe? Be sure to tag us on instagram @theprotopantry and use the #protopantry hashtag. Happy cooking!

Everything on is made using our 50-ingredient minimalist pantry list. We have recipes from all over the world and for most dietary needs—explore here.