This recipe has been adopted after a similar lunch i like to have at cafe gratitude in my neighborhood. it has so much flavor and it’s guilt free! I like to make this at the beginning of the week in large batches since the ingredients keep well in the refrigerator for a few days and make a convenient lunch.

makes 5 servings

• 2 medium sized sweet potatoes
• 2 cups kale de-stemmed
• 1 jar pickled turnips (found in health food stores)
• 1 cup quinoa
• 1 cup brown rice
• black sesame seeds as garnish
• 2 tablespoons cashews as garnish
Pesto sauce
• 1/2 cup olive oil
• 1 lemon squeezed
• 3 garlic cloves
• 2 cups basil
• 3 tablespoons pine nuts
• salt and pepper to taste

• In a medium sized sauce pan drop 1 cup of quinoa with two cups of water. Bring to a boil on medium heat and reduce to low. Stirring occasionally for about 20 minutes or until tender and water has absorbed. Repeat the same process for the brown rice with two cups of water. Brown rice tends to take around 40 minutes to cook.

• Thoroughly wash and slice two medium sized sweet potatoes. Place in a medium sized pot and fill with water until it is just about covered. Cook on low heat for about 30 minutes or until tender when poked with a fork. If you also have a steamer, it is another great option to cook your sweet potatoes, just fill the bottom with around 2 inches of water. Once hot steam for about 7 minutes.

• In a separate small pot fill with water and 2 teaspoons of salt, bring to a boil on high heat. De-stem and wash the kale and drop into the boiling water for about 30- 45 seconds to blanch the kale. This process will slightly soften the texture of the leafy greens and add some flavor. You will notice a bright green will emerge from the kale, this will let you know it is ready. Remove the kale and place in a strainer to slightly cool.

• For the pesto sauce, we used a vitamix blender. We found it more efficient to use and easier cleanup than making the pesto in a food processor. Cut the steams of the basil and drop into the blender. Next add the garlic, olive oil, the juice of a squeezed lemon and the pine nuts. Salt and pepper to taste. Blend on the lowest setting first and gradually increase the speed until ingredients are finely blended. This process only took about 30-45 seconds.

• Begin layering your veggie bowl with the brown rice and quinoa. Next add your toppings of sweet potatoes and braised kale. Add a side of pickled turnips. Place a generous amount of pesto and garish your bowl with black sesame seeds and cashews. The flavors of the pesto and pickled turnips bring every flavor together. Hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we did!

photos and styling by: ivan solis


Add your own

    Tori says:

    Healthy January food hall of fame right here! This looks so delicious! Now I feel inspired to make this month full of whole and healthy meals! This looks incred!

    gabriella says:

    I agree with Tori, total healthy food hall of fame-worthy. This looks beautiful (and delicious)!


    Shelby says:

    Are the vegetables cooked?

    There’s never too many recipes for a healthy bowl. I love to make this kind of mixes for a breakfast.

    Poshnessary says:

    wow so amazing! delicious

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    Kait says:

    You had me at sweet potato.

    xo, Kait.

    Jess says:

    This looks great! I make salads most days for lunch but want to get into the idea of ‘bowls’

    vanessa joie says:

    Veggie bowls are my favorite. I also love the macro bowls Sarah Yates blogged about quite awhile go. YUM.

    Jeline says:

    I love this!! Totally doing this for lunch! x


    Anonymous says:

    Love cafe gratitude! Need to try this 🙂

    court. says:

    this looks delicious. totally need to try this! it can be hard to find creative healthy dishes. I bet my body building hubby would like it too. it’s a nightmare trying to get him to eat veggies or anything but lean protein ha ha. I think you meant “blanch” the kale though, not “braise”. (:

    Desain says:

    This looks great! I make salads most days for lunch but want to get into the idea of ‘bowls’

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