When life becomes busy and chaotic, it's tempting to forget about cooking and healthy eating and give into convenience foods. However, it's the busy times when it's even more important to nourish our bodies with vitamin-rich and vibrant foods so that we can keep ourselves energized and on-point.
With a little preparation and a bit of time set aside on Sunday, you can have a grab-n-go meal to enjoy for lunch or dinner throughout the week. The kicker? This Grab-N-Go Sweet Potato, Cranberry & Quinoa Power Bowl is PACKED with energizing goodness, vitamins, and antioxidants. The best part? It tastes absolutely delicious and has a little bit of everything from sweet, savory, and spiced to creamy and crunchy. Plus, it's all wrapped up in one pretty package.
Each part of this bowl is absolutely delicious on its own, but it's as if the stars align when all of the flavors come together.
To prep this meal for the week, I always start with the sweet potatoes. You'll peel and cut the sweet potatoes, drizzle them generously with olive oil, and toss on a whole lotta ground cinnamon and smoked paprika. After seasoning with a bit of sea salt, you'll pop them in the oven and roast for 20-30 minutes or until they're deliciously tender.
While the potatoes are roasting, you can start on the quinoa (hi, complete protein source #1) by cooking up one cup of white quinoa over the stove. Once the quinoa is cooked, you'll toss in some pomegranate seeds, fresh chives, hemp seeds (hello, complete protein source #2), balsamic vinegar, and tamari and toss to coat.
The last component to prepare ahead of time is an easy and delicious spiced cranberry sauce that you'll make by adding fresh cranberries, pure maple syrup, water, cinnamon, and cardamom (my not-so-secret secret ingredient) to a sauce pan and simmer the mixture until it's broken down into a sauce. It's a sweet, slightly tangy, and spiced cranberry sauce that will have you saying "just one more scoop" down to the very last bit.
For the avocado and arugula, you'll just need about 5 to 10 minutes to prep them in the morning.
Recap | To make this nutrient-giving power bowl, you'll prepare three of the five components ahead of time (i.e., the sweet potatoes, quinoa, and cranberry sauce) and refrigerate each in individual containers. Each morning, you'll toss the prepared items into a container or bowl and whip up two simple + fresh components: mashed avocado and a bit of arugula spritzed with fresh lime juice. After that, you'll have a flavorful and power-packed meal. Piece of
And because I've completely neglected to include some good kitchen-going tunes in my posts lately, here is one that I'm loving right now. It's a feel-good, bubbly beat with bright vocals and fun punches of sound. Turn it on, hop in your kitchen, and have some fun.
Grab-N-Go Sweet Potato, Cranberry & Quinoa Power Bowl
For the Roasted Sweet Potatoes
- 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled
- 2-3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
- Sea salt, to taste
For the Quinoa
- 1 cup white quinoa, thoroughly rinsed
- 2 cups water
- ⅓ cup fresh chives, chopped
- ¾ cup pomegranate seeds
- ¼ cup shelled hemp seeds
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1-2 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
For the Spiced Cranberry Sauce
- 12 ounces fresh cranberries
- ⅓ to ½ cup pure maple syrup (I use Grade B)
- ¼ cup filtered water
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
For the Mashed Avocado (you'll need these ingredients each morning)
- ½ avocado, peeled and pitted
- ½ lime
- Sea salt
- Chili flakes
- 1 cup fresh baby arugula
- Lime wedges
- Black pepper
To Make the Sweet Potatoes
- Preheat your oven to 425F.
- Cut your sweet potatoes into equal-size wedges or large cubes and transfer them to a baking sheet that has been lined with parchment paper.
- Drizzle on the olive oil and sprinkle on the cinnamon, paprika, and sea salt.
- Toss to coat.
- Roast for 20-30 minutes or until fork-tender and golden.
- Refrigerate in an airtight container until ready to use.
To Make the Quinoa
- Add the quinoa and water to a medium sauce pan. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until the quinoa is translucent and tender.
- Drain off excess water and transfer to a bowl.
- Add in the chives, pomegranate seeds, hemp seeds, balsamic vinegar, and tamari. Toss to coat.
- Refrigerate in an airtight container until ready to use.
To Make the Spiced Cranberry Sauce
- Add the cranberries, maple syrup, water, cinnamon, and cardamom to a large sauce pan. Simmer for 15-20 minutes or until the cranberries have burst and broken down into a chunky sauce, stirring occasionally.
- Let cool and transfer to a glass jar.
- Refrigerate in an airtight container until ready to use.
To Make the Mashed Avocado
- Prepare the mashed avocado in the morning just before assembling the power bowl.
- Add the flesh of the avocado to a bowl and squeeze the lime juice over top. Sprinkle on some sea salt, and use the back of a fork to mash the avocado. Stir in the chili flakes.
To Assemble the Bowls
- In an airtight container or bowl, add in some sweet potatoes, quinoa, fresh arugula, cranberry sauce, and mashed avocado. Garnish with black pepper and a fresh spritz of lime juice.
Thalia @ butter and brioche says
Power bowls are just my favourite things to make for my weeknight dinner - definitely need to make your sweet potato and quinoa bowl, it looks super healthy and delicious too!
Thanks, Thalia! I love them for weeknight dinners, too! They're just so easy to toss together at the end of a long day. The perfect meal!
Danielle | Krafted Koch says
This looks so beautiful and delicious!
Thanks so much, Danielle!
Vegatble Lover April says
You took so many great pictures, I got really hungry. :) Anyway, thanks for the great idea, I will definitely try this out tomorrow!
Well thanks, April! I hope you enjoy/enjoyed it!
Celeste Jackson says
This looks amazingly balance...just the thing for satisfying all my taste buds.
looks so yummy!! Just want to add though, if you use regular soy sauce, the dish isn't gluten free. :( They hide that stuff everywhere.
Thanks, Gayla! Very true. I usually stick to tamari for that reason, but that's good to note for those who don't know. I was so surprised when I found out that soy sauce contains gluten -- crazy where gluten gets tucked away!
Kate // Vegukate says
This looks like Thanksgiving in a bowl! I'm obsessed!
Thanks, Kate! It really is like Thanksgiving in a bowl -- a fresher, more vibrant version of it!
Annique @ healthfullyvegan says
Great, I just saw fresh cranberries in the supermarket today but wasn't quite sure how to turn them into a delicious side dish. This power bowl looks amazing and perfect to take to work.
Thank you for sharing! =)
Thanks, Annique! Cranberries used to intimidate me, but this preparation keeps things simply and tasty. I hope you enjoy the recipe!
This looks great! Would you warm the potatoes and quinoa before serving?
Thanks, Carole! I usually enjoy them cold, but you can absolutely warm them if you prefer.
Oh my goodness this looks AMAZING! I love bowls like this and the addition of the cranberry makes it so seasonal and delightful sounding right now. Thank you!!
Check me out: http://earthzenmama.com
You're welcome, Jenn! The cranberry sauce really does the trick this time of year. Thanks for taking the time to comment :)
janet @ the taste space says
What a great autumn-inspired bowl! It seems daunting with so many components but it sounds perfect. :)
Thanks, Janet! I promise it's not too daunting if you set aside some prep time. It usually takes me about 45 minutes to an hour to prep the qunioa, sweet potatoes, and cranberry sauce because you can have all three baking/cooking simultaneously. I hope you enjoy it!
Cassie @ Almost Getting it Together says
I thinkkkk I found my lunch for this week!!! Just pinned, this looks so tasty!!
Thanks, Cassie! I hope you enjoy it!
I was so intrigued by this recipe & so thrilled when I tried it...absolutely fabulous! I was skeptical of putting some of these ingredients together, but it really works. Filling & delicious...and my favorite part: it's a complete meal in one recipe! I add a piece of fruit for dessert & don't have to think about anything else. Thanks so much for sharing! I'll be posting this on my Facebook page: whole living through whole foods.
I'm so glad you're enjoying this power bowl! Some of the ingredients do seem odd to pair together, but I find it so satisfying to have so many flavors and textures in one meal. Thanks for taking the time to comment with your feedback and for sharing it on your Facebook page. I really appreciate it!
Made this today - I think I am now addicted. It was absolutely wonderful - thanks for sharing.
So glad you're enjoying it, Karen! I'm a power bowl addict, for sure, so you have company in your new-found addiction :)
Loved this recipe, will definitely become a regular for us, makes work lunches extra special.
I'm so happy to hear that this will become a regular for you, Kellie! Thanks so much for taking the time to report back with your results :)
Love your blog, I get so inspired by your tasteful and delicious creativity
Amy Allison says
This looks amazing. Do you have tips for getting out the pomegranate seeds? Also, how many servings is this supposed to make?
Thanks, Amy! It makes about 4-6 servings. A trick for getting pomegranate seeds out is to fill a large bowl about halfway full of water, cut off the ends of the pomegranate and halve it, then submerge each half under water and pull the pomegranate apart with your hands/separate the seeds from the pulp. The pulp will float in the water while the seeds will drop to the bottom of the bowl. Then, you can simply strain off the water. I hope this helps!
Amy, wanted to share this YouTube video with you, it changed my life ;) http://youtu.be/jJ7dk9nDR-k It is so quick and easy, getting pomegranate seeds is no longer a daunting task for this Chick.
Another tip for pomegranate seeds...substitute dried cranberries. :) This is what I did because it's what I had on hand and it was still delish!! But the bowl of water trick does work.
This salad looks amazing! I can't wait to try it. I love your idea to prepare all the cooked elements the night before so assembly in the morning is a snap.
Thanks for sharing a great recipe.
I have a quinoa salad that I love making in the summer.
Chelsey @ Chelsey Crafts says
I couldn't agree more! And once you get into the habit of making nourishing meals like this you won't have to think twice when eating healthily during busy times. Love this recipe :)
Made this for thanksgiving dinner! Awesome and the "leftovers" will be perfect. One thing I did differently is I soaked the quinoa overnight. It cooks up fluffier and tastier - if you have the time it's totally worth it.
Loved this , thank you ! I used a lot less maple syrup but really enjoyed the flavours ...I just love healthy food and how tasty you can make things if you try , plus gluten free too
This recipe looks amazing! My 9 year old son asked me if he could be a vegetarian for a week. I told him I would join him. So as I'm searching for recipes I see this bowl and can't wait to give it a try! I was wondering if those are pumpkin seeds on the mashed avocado? I didn't see it in the recipe.
Hi, Kelli! I'm so very sorry for the delay. I somehow missed your comment when it came through! Yes, those are pepitas on the mashed avocado. Just a little garnish for the photos, but of course you could add them too if you'd like. And what a neat endeavor your 9-year-old has taken on. I hope it went/goes well!
Can I meal prep this? I’m bed bound currently and literally need to grab and go but the person I have who cooks for me makes everything up and already put together. How many of these could I put together ahead? Since I don’t have the luxury of actually making up my own because of my bad health.
Hi, Lindsay! You can meal prep and pre-assemble everything except the mashed avocado. I'd recommend making that just before serving or omitting. Sending healing wishes to you!
This looks so yummy! I'm allergic to avocado- is there a substation you'd recommend, or do you think it would be fine without it? I worry that the creaminess and the fats the avocado add would be integral.
Hi, Janis! You can omit the avocado, although it does add a lovely creaminess. Depending on your taste preferences, here are a few ideas for substitutions: hummus, tahini, a drizzle of high-quality olive oil, or even this sauce: https://www.blissfulbasil.com/bitchin-sauce-copycat/