Every Saturday I pick up a loaded CSA box at the farmer’s market. When I get home, I spend about ten minutes rinsing everything off, stowing it in the refrigerator, and daydreaming about what I’ll cook.
Something I make quite frequently from my CSA is lunch. My husband is a little picky, and won’t eat certain veggies without a fight. I like to think of myself as a bit more open minded, so it often becomes a personal challenge to eat any unpopular vegetables all by myself.
Rice bowls really help to simplify this task. By cooking multiple veggies in a similar style on Sunday, I’m able to assemble a week’s worth of lunches from whatever produce I have on hand. In addition to my weekly vegetable bounty, I cook up a huge pot of brown rice, and usually prepare some kind of protein. Usually it’s beans or tofu, but occasionally I might use a little hummus, tempeh or seitan, or even whip up a quick batch of falafel.
How to Make a Week’s Worth of Rice Bowls:
Step One: Cook 1/4 – 1/2 cup of rice for each day. Brown basmati is my favorite kind of rice, but you can use whatever variety you like best. Wild rice blends add a lot of heartiness to the bowl, while white rice mellows everything out quite a bit. If you want to increase the protein in your bowls, try using quinoa in place of rice.
Step Two: Choose a protein. Marinated tofu is wonderful for use in rice bowls. It’s easy to match it to your theme for the week by swapping out the marinade, and it keeps in the fridge beautifully. Red or black beans, or roasted chickpeas are great too. Falafel or veggie patties are also a great way to beef up a rice bowl. If you are eating these bowls at home, try frying an egg to top your rice bowl. It will knock it out of the park.
Step Three: Add some veggies. Cook up a batch of veggies for the week, more than one if you can, since variety will keep things lively. Veggies can be steamed, roasted, sauted, or added raw. Some of my favorites are sauted or roasted greens, raw shredded carrots, sliced raw bell peppers, roasted sweet potato, and steamed broccoli.
Step Four: Dress it up. Sauces, condiments, and garnishes can be used to tie it all together. Spicy Mayo (half sriracha, half Kewpie/vegan mayo) is my go to condiment for Asian themed bowls. Soy sauce, or plain sriracha are also favorites. For Mexican or Southwestern bowls, I like to add guacamole, salsa, or maybe a little monterey jack or queso fresco. I’ve used pesto, feta, olive tapanade, and pickles to jazz up other kinds of bowls. When I’m in the mood for something simple, I just add a squirt of Dr. Braggs and call it a day.
Step Five: Assemble. Making the bowls ahead of time simplifies this process immensely. Invest in five single portion re-usable containers to use every week. Divide the rice amongst the five containers, then add your protein, veggies, and garnishes. If you are using condiments, you can either pack them in itty-itty containers alongside the rice bowls, but its better to just store bottles of spicy mayo, sriracha, or soy sauce at work, if you can.
Recipes and Resources
- Marinated Tofu
- Vegetarian Black Beans
- Red Beans
- Black Bean Falafel
- Sweet Potato Fritters
- Veggie Burgers
- Texas Caviar (Bean Salad)
- Garlic Collard Greens
- Quick Pickle Bok Choy Salad
- Chipotle Sweet Potato and Garlic Spinach
- Chili & Lime Sweet Potatoes
- Rosemary Eggplant Medallions
- Sweet Sesame Brussels Sprouts
- Garlic Kale
- Roasted Beets
- Zuchinni Saute
- Braised Mushrooms and Bok Choy
- Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce
- Kewpie Mayonaise
- Eggless Vegan Mayo
- Gluten Free Soy Sauce
- Bragg Liquid Amino
- 24-oz Glass Food Storage Containers
- Rubbermaid 3-Cup Food Storage Container
- Stainless Steel Food Container
- 1 oz Smidget Containers
- Plastic Sauce Containers
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