Food box delivery services are often touted as the best choice for cleaning up your diet and making your life simpler, but they can be costly. After trying out a food delivery service myself, I finally understood what all the hype was about. I learned that simpler recipes can actually be really delicious. So we’re sharing 4 simple tips for making your own a nutrient-packed grain bowl sans the cost of a food box service.
Step 1. Pick a Grain
My go-to grain for a breakfast bowl is Organic Polenta. Polenta as a breakfast base is really versatile because it goes well with sweet recipes and savory recipes. Mother’s Earth Store house says this about the corn-based food, “Polenta is a low carbohydrate food rich in vitamin A and C making it a good source of the caroteinoids, lutein and zeaxanthin.”
One study found that Lutein is really great for your eye health, so cooking with Polenta is a really great way to help take care of your eyes. In the study, The Effect of Lutein on Eye and Extra-Eye Health, they state that “A large body of evidence shows that lutein has several beneficial effects, especially on eye health. In particular, lutein is known to improve or even prevent age-related macular disease which is the leading cause of blindness and vision impairment.”
Here’s some other healthy grains to try:
- Cauliflower rice - a great low carb option
- Wild Rice - Lots of protein
- Lentils - 9g of Protein in ½ a cup
Step 2. Pick a Veggie
Dice and steam some sweet baby broccoli before you toss it into a bowl of Wild Rice. The two pair together perfectly. There’s 12g of protein in ½ cup of wild rice, along with potassium, fiber, and Iron. Broccoli adds in some more key nutrients, like Vitamin C, Vitamin B-6, and Magnesium.
Magnesium is a wonderful way to help the body recover after a workout. The Chicago Tribune quotes nutritionist Lee Holmes, stating (that a) “Lack of magnesium can cause muscle spasms, however when taken after exercise it can help to calm your muscles down…”
Add these veggies to your grain bowl for a robust flavor
- Butternut squash - goes great on top of fried Polenta with egg whites
- Bell peppers - perfect with couscous and shredded chicken
- Roasted carrots
- Caramelized onions - tastes great with Lentils
- Boiled plantains - 2g of Protein and half your daily Vitamin C intake
- Shaved brussel sprouts- super tasty with Cauliflower Rice and Wild Caught Tuna
- Veggie stir fry mixes
Step 3. Pick a Protein
Poke Style Salmon is perhaps my favorite grain bowl protein and it’s great for cold-served dishes. Want to know how to prepare Poke Salmon, we’ve found the perfect how to video, so you get it just right.
Other healthy proteins to add to your grain bowl:
- shredded chicken
- Wild caught tuna - Super yummy with shaved Brussel Sprouts and a Lemon Tahini sauce - click here for a recipe
- Shrimp - Pair with tomato sauce, grits, and cheese for shrimp and grits
- Cuban spiced black beans - click here for a recipe
- Crumbled Beyond Burger - a great vegan option for beef
- Green Jackfruit - another great vegan option people compare it to pork
Step 4. Add Some Flavor
The best part of the grain bowl is it’s simplicity. Pick out one grain, one protein, and some veggies for a well balanced meal. But to really give it a finishing touch you’ll need to add some flavor.
Try these sauces for some fun flavors
- Thai Peanut Sauce - Pair it with Veggie Stir-fry and cubed Tofu
- Coconut Curry - Here’s a great recipe for a Coconut Curry Sauce
- Sesame Ginger - Click here for a simple Sesame Ginger recipe
- Kale Pesto - Here’s an easy 5 minute vegan recipe
The options and combinations for grain bowls are many. The basic four ingredient structure allows you to save money and time all while being healthy and creative.