When I decide that I like something to eat, I tend to eat it over and over.
Allow me to introduce you to my latest plant-based dinner obsession which is loaded with healthy complex carbs, a complete source of protein, nutrient dense veggies and most importantly, tons of satisfying flavor.
Sweet potatoes, quinoa, veggies and marinara sauce = Italian Style Power Bowl
I wasn’t quite sure what to call this dish because anything I came up with sounded fancy and complicated so I took a look at the ingredients and realized we have another easy Power Bowl on our hands.
I have zero patience for cooking attention-to-detail meals which is why throwing ingredients in my cast-iron skillet, adding some flavors and allowing the dish to come together real quick works super well for me.
Why I love this Meatless Monday Power Bowl:
Sweet potatoes <- Not only do I love their taste but they are a great source of complex carbohydrates to fuel my muscles with lots of important antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties which aid in recovery/repair too.
Quinoa <- plant-based complete source of protein (all 9 essential amino acids!), complex carb and good source of iron.
Veggies <- you can load up this dish with a multitude of nutrient-dense veggies or limit them as you wish depending upon taste and/or if you have a long run in the morning 🙂
Nutritional Yeast <- the flavor of parmesan cheese without the dairy.
Nutritional Yeast contains protein (3 grams per tablespoon) and the ever-important B vitamins (especially vitamin B12) which can be hard to get if you follow a plant-based diet.
I like to cook this dish in my cast-iron skillet because really, everything just tastes better when cooked in the cast-iron skillet.
I don’t even know why or what I mean when I say this but trust me, anything you cook in your cast-iron cookware will taste different from the food cooked a basic skillet.
There’s something about using cast-iron pans that allows the food to just cook so darn evenly and give everything a great texture (I think, I don’t know, I am trying to pinpoint it all exactly and that’s what I am coming up with).
If you don’t have a cast-iron pan, feel free to use whatever you have — this dish will come together regardless!
Before we get to the recipe, here are some options to keep in mind:
*If you don’t have sweet potatoes, you can use white potatoes but I like the combination of savory marinara sauce with the flavor of a sweet potato.
*You can also use butternut squash in place of the potatoes or use both — what a terrific mix of flavor and texture!
*Use whatever vegetables you wish! I like spinach, broccoli and brussels sprouts lately but get a variety going! How about eggplant, cauliflower, carrots or zucchini?
*Prepare a few servings of quinoa at once; use some for this recipe and save some to add to other dishes like our other plant-based power bowl recipes, salads, stir frys and even your morning bowl of oatmeal for a protein boost.
*This dish is a perfect dinner the night before a long run. Just limit your vegetables and load up on the sweet potatoes and quinoa. The marinara sauce may even offer you a nice amount of sodium without overdoing it and the rest of the ingredients fuel up your muscles in a healthy way without weighing you down.
*Of course you can add mozzarella cheese and/or parmesan but I recommend the Nutritional Yeast for the nutritional value (and to keep things dairy-free).
*This Power Bowl is awesome not only served hot but eaten cold. It reheats well for future servings. Make double or triple so that you have extra!
*Carnivores in your house? Serve this power bowl as a savory side!Meatless Monday Italian Style Power Bowl! #yum #meatlessmonday #plantbased #vegetarian #powerbowl @tinamuir88 Click To Tweet
Do you use cast-iron cookware?
Do you have a dinner you are currently cooking over and over?
What’s on today’s workout agenda?
- 2 large sweet potatoes – diced
- 2 servings of cooked quinoa
- Vegetables of choice (fresh, frozen, roasted- up to you)
- 1/2 can of organic tomato paste
- 1 -2 cups marinara sauce of choice (you can use more/less sauce – your choice!)
- Pinch of oregano
- Pinch of basil
- Cooked quinoa according to package directions and set aside.
- Microwave sweet potatoes briefly just to soften them before dicing.
- Grease your cast-iron skillet and heat it on top of the stove on a medium setting.
- Add your vegetables and diced sweet potatoes, sprinkle with seasonings.
- Cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to make sure nothing burns.
- Add tomato paste, mixing to coat the ingredients and then add sauce.
- Cook until potatoes are soft and vegetables tender (maybe another 10-15 minutes).
- Stir in quinoa and mix.
- Sprinkle with Nutritional Yeast before serving.