These family friendly quinoa rainbow veggie dumpling bowls are packed with flavor and protein. Quinoa is tossed with a vibrant array of fresh veggies and served alongside Nasoya’s pillowy dumplings. A versatile 2-in-1 nutty sesame sauce is served either sweet or spicy (or both), and drizzled over top to pull everything together into one seamless, rainbow-hued bowl.
This post in sponsored by Nasoya. Thanks for supporting the brands that support Blissful Basil!
It’s no secret that I love power bowls. There’s an entire chapter dedicated to them in my cookbook and there are plenty of recipes archived here on the blog, too.
If you’re new to the “power bowl” game, allow me to briefly summarize:
A power bowl is a collection of nourishing food items tucked into the confines of a roomy bowl. Often, these seemingly disparate food elements are brought together by a unifying sauce or dip.
These quinoa rainbow veggie dumpling bowls meet all the above criteria.
A vibrant quinoa salad gets nestled alongside pillowy dumplings (either pan-fried or boiled).
Then, a sweet or spicy (chef’s choice) nutty sesame sauce is drizzled over top. The sauce complements both the dumplings and the salad and really pulls everything together.
To make these nourishing power bowls, you’ll start by cooking up two cups of white or red quinoa.
FYI, this recipe makes A LOT of quinoa salad. This was intentional as it’s meant to be a family friendly meal and/or one with plenty of leftovers to enjoy for several quick weeknight meals.
While the quinoa cooks, you’ll bring another pot of water to a boil (if you’re boiling the dumplings) and prepare the vegetables.
The veggie/herb lineup in this quinoa includes:
Cabbage—red, green, or a mix of both.
Mini bell peppers.
Once the quinoa is ready and the veggies are prepped, add everything to a large mixing bowl. Then, add sesame seeds, a drizzle of toasted sesame oil, and salt. Toss to coat.
Let the quinoa salad rest (or chill) while you get to work on the sauce and dumplings.
The sauce can be made sweet or spicy (or both). The base is same regardless: rice vinegar, almond butter (or tahini), tamari (or soy), sesame oil, and chopped cilantro.
To make the sauce sweet, you’ll add pure maple syrup. To make the sauce spicy you’ll add Sambal Oelek (ground chili paste). Personally, I like a sweet ‘n’ spicy sauce, so I add both.
If you’re looking to please a wider range of palates with both options, simply divide the base sauce in half and then add maple syrup to one and Sambal Oelek to the other.
Once the sauce is made, you’ll prepare the dumplings.
You’ll need two packages of veggie dumplings. I use a combination of Nasoya’s Thai Basil Vegetable Dumplings and Tofu Vegetable Dumplings, but you can use all one or all the other if you have a favorite.
Now, there are two ways to prepare the dumplings. You can pan-fry them or boil them. I like each cooking method for different reasons.
When pan-fried, the dumplings have crisp, golden-brown exteriors and delectable veggie-filled interiors.
When boiled, the dumplings are soft, pillowy, and delightfully chewy.
Either option suits these power bowls well, so it’s purely a matter of personal preference as to which cooking route you pursue.
How pretty are these pan-fried dumplings against that colorful quinoa salad? 😍
Once all of the elements are ready, assemble your power bowls.
Spoon a generous heap of the quinoa salad into each bowl and tuck several dumplings alongside it. I garnished the bowls with lime wedges and Serrano pepper slices, but that’s totally optional.
Serve the bowls with plenty of that nutty sauce! It really takes them to next-level heights (and is good enough to eat straight from a spoon sans power bowl).
If you make this recipe, let me know! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #blissfulbasil on Instagram.
Quinoa Rainbow Veggie Dumpling Bowls
Rainbow Veggie Sesame-Cilantro Quinoa
- 2 cups uncooked quinoa (white or red)
- 3 1/2 cups filtered water
- 2 cups frozen shelled edamame, thawed
- 8 ounces mini bell peppers or regular bell peppers, cored and julienned
- 3 cups shredded red or green cabbage (or a mix of both)
- 4 scallions, ends trimmed and thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup packed cilantro leaves, finely chopped (Time-saving tip: Chop up an extra 1/2 cup for the dipping sauce while you're at it!)
- 3 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
- 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon sea salt or to taste
2-in-1 Speedy Nutty Sesame Sauce
- 1/4 cup rice vinegar
- 1/4 cup natural almond butter or tahini
- 3 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
- 1/2 cup packed cilantro leaves, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup (for sweet) or 2 tablespoons Sambal Oelek, or to taste (for spicy)
- 2 (9-ounce) packages Nasoya dumplings
For the Quinoa
- Thoroughly rinse the quinoa in a fine-mesh sieve or colander.
- Bring the water to a boil in a large saucepan. Add the quinoa, return to a boil, and cook over medium heat for 10 to 12 minutes, uncovered, or until the quinoa has absorbed most of the water, stirring occasionally.
- Remove from the heat, fluff with a fork, cover, and let stand for 5 minutes.
- While the quinoa cooks, bring a large stockpot full of water to a rolling boil (if you're opting to boil the dumplings—if you're pan-frying, skip this step), and prepare the veggies and other quinoa add-ins.
- Transfer the cooked quinoa to a large bowl and stir in the edamame, peppers, cabbage, scallions, cilantro, sesame seeds, sesame oil, and salt. Set aside.
For the Sauce
- This sauce can be prepared sweet or spicy.
- To make it, start by whisking together the vinegar, almond butter, tamari, sesame oil, and cilantro. To make the sauce sweet, add only the maple syrup. To make the sauce spicy, add only the Sambal Oelek. For a sweet 'n' spicy sauce (my favorite), add both. To make a little of each option, divide the base sauce in half, then add 1 tablespoon of maple syrup to one half and 1 tablespoon of Sambal Oelek to the other.
- Refrigerate until ready to serve.
For the Dumplings
- Cook the dumplings just before serving.
- If you're boiling, add the dumplings to the large pot of boiling water. Boil rapidly for 1 minute, then reduce the heat to a simmer and continue to cook for another 2 minutes, or until cooked through. Strain off the water and set aside.
- If you're pan-frying, heat a few tablespoons of high-heat oil in a large sauté pan. Then, follow package instructions.
- Transfer the quinoa to a large serving platter or bowl. Spread the rainbow veggies over top. Then, top with the cooked dumplings.
- Serve immediately alongside (or drizzled with) the sauce.