#MeatFreeLunch : Spicy Roasted Chickpea & Sweet Potato Protein Bowl
I can honestly say that making meatless lunches is one of the most money-saving decision I’ve made. I can meal prep for no less than $20 a week, which is a first for me. I also don’t even miss having meat every day. I’ve also lost 12 pounds which is just a bonus for me.
So sometimes the local farmer’s market set up a few tables at my job and you can purchase a grocery bag of fresh produce for about $25. When I buy a bag I usually try to utilize as much of what I bought for my meal prep. So for this bowl, the only thing I had to buy was the chickpeas because I got the rest of the veggies in the farmer’s market bundle and I already had sesame seeds and tahini in my pantry at home.
Having a well-stocked pantry will also save you some money if you try to us as much of what you already have but that really only works when you have a variety of items to choose from. If you only stock the same flavors in your pantry you will quickly get bored with your food and be tempted to heat out more.
My inspiration for the sauce in this recipe came flipping through a book I have that’s specifically for creating various bowls. I don’t particularly care for the recipes in this book or most cookbooks produced after food network stopped hiring chefs for their cooking shows (what’s that like ’98-’99). The older the cookbook the better the recipe but for inspirational purposed these new cookbooks and Pinterest recipes are great. The flavor combinations and photos get my wheels turning.
So I saw a recipe that was similar but I had to make a few changes because it was just such a boring bowl. I up the spice and roasted the chickpeas instead of boiling them for added crunch. I like texture combinations in food but if you’d rather boil them that is also fine.
When I meal prep I only make 4 bowls because I almost always eat while I’m out on my off days. And I am almost always out somewhere on my days off so I just don’t prep for those days. I also get tired of eating the same things over and over so after 4 days I’m pretty much over it.
Oh Oh! before I make my exit if you don’t know how to make quinoa or brown rice I have links to those recipes in the recipe below.
Disclosure: Bear in mind that some of the links in this post are affiliate links and if you go through them to make a purchase I will earn a commission. Keep in mind that I link these companies and their products because of their quality and not because of the commission I receive from your purchases. The decision is yours, and whether or not you decide to buy something is completely up to you.
Spicy Roasted Chickpea & Sweet Potato Protein Bowl
I got the idea for this recipe from one of my cookbooks. I did not care for the original recipe, as I found it to be a bit boring and lacking in variety of flavors and textures. So I decided to up the spice on the chickpeas and roast them for an added crunch. I also changed the tahini dressing and added quinoa so that the extra protein would make me feel full longer. This will help me fight my snack attacks.
- 1 can low sodium chickpeas drained and rinsed
- 1/8 tsp ground cayenne pepper
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 Tbsp Sriracha hot sauce
- 1 tsp paprika
- 2 each sweet potatoes peeled and sliced 1/2-Inch thick pieces
- 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tsp kosher or sea salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 2 c brown rice cooked
- 1 c quinoa cooked
- 1 c purple cabbage shredded
- 2 c fresh baby spinach
Lemon Garlic Tahini Dressing
- 1 Tbsp Lemon juice
- 3 Tbsp tahini paste
- 1/2 tsp minced garlic
- black pepper to taste
- 1/4 c extra virgin olive oil
- 1 1/2 tsp red wine vinegar
- 1 Tbsp sesame seeds
Preheat the oven to 375ºF.
While the rice and quinoa are cooking, toss the sweet potatoes slices in the 2 Tbsp of olive oil. Lay the slices out on a parchment paper-lined sheet pan and season with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven for 35 minutes, flipping slices halfway (approx. 15 minutes) through the cooking time. Set aside to cool.
In a bowl combine chickpeas, Sriracha, cumin, cayenne, and paprika. Spread evenly on a parchment paper-lined sheet pan. Roast in the oven for 30 minutes, stirring chickpeas after 15 minute. Set aside to cool.
To make the tahini dressing, whisk all of the ingredients together in a bowl or blend in a blender until smooth. Pour into 2-ounce cups with lids for later.
Build your bowl by layering the bottom with the cooled brown rice-quinoa mixture. Place a hand full of spinach, a few slices of sweet potato, about 1/4 cup of chickpeas and a small hand full of cabbage. Drizzle with the tahini dressing and sprinkle with sesame seeds.