Have you noticed the many restaurants that are now serving “bowls”? It seems that “pass your plate” has become “fill your bowl”. At first, I was uneasy with the idea but I’ve quickly jumped on this trend (hoping it continues). Our family is now serving dinner bowls as part of our weekly meal plan and oh, what a game changer! I’m sharing some of my favorite dinner bowl ideas below along with a peek at some of my favorite bowl collections.
Feeling Unsure? I Was!
The main reason I was uneasy with this Now Serving Dinner Bowls trend is because I really do not like ordering at a counter through plexiglass. You know, choosing your options as you walk through the line. I always feel pressured and often make choices that I wish I hadn’t.
Finding Dinner Bowl Inspiration
Now that I have experienced this type of eating, I am loving the ease it brings to preparing dinner at home. Inspiration for my bowls typically comes from a craving, a meal we ate in a restaurant, or from foods I find in my pantry or refrigerator. This is why I am embracing this dinner style! Fulfill a craving, use what you have on hand, eat healthily, and save money and time. Let your family know you are now serving dinner bowls!! There is no wrong way to do this and best of all…you can do it your way!
Collecting Bowls, Part of the Fun
As you may have guessed, I have a few bowl collections to choose from when preparing dinner bowls. I often find sets of bowls at thrift stores, antique shops, and sometimes at big-box stores. No big deal if this is too much for you-I get it and certainly feel that way on many occasions. Either way, dinner in a bowl is quick and delicious.
Dinner Bowls With A Theme
Do you ever cook with a theme? I find this to be a great way to become excited about dinner and also bring inspiration to the meal. For example, if I am craving Greek food I start looking for cucumbers, Kalamata olives, and my tzatziki recipe. Once I have a type of food chosen, the rest is simply gathering, cooking and assembling your bowl. I love to choose a bowl that matches my theme and listen to music that you might hear if you were in this particular part of the world. Give it a try…you just might find that cooking dinner doesn’t have to be a chore.
Now Serving Dinner Bowls! My Creations…
Asian Inspired Bowl
This is one of my first bowls to try at home. I was inspired by an Asian restaurant that builds your bowl as you choose your ingredients. My bowl includes:
- grilled chicken
- Linguini rice noodles
- Fresh broccoli, edamame, and bean sprouts
- Pickled red onion (easy to make your own)
- Fried egg
- Topped with fresh chili paste (Sambal Oelek)
Serve with chopsticks and your theme is complete!
Breakfast Inspired Bowl
This is a fun one and something I am sure you can create with items in your pantry and refrigerator. Breakfast is good any time of the day! My bowl includes:
- Grits (I prefer House-Autry….no fillers!!)
- Cheese (we like cheddar or white cheddar)
- Sausage or bacon
- Eggs-scrambled or fried
- Hot Sauce
- Salt and pepper
We like to prepare everything and then have fun building our own bowls. It is fun to see how everyone builds their dinner bowl in a unique way.
Greek Inspired Bowl
Greek is by far one of my favorite foods. This is an easy bowl to assemble since you can be so flexible on the ingredients. My bowl includes:
- Butter or Bibb lettuce
- Grilled chicken (I cook a large portion and then use the leftovers during the week)
- Kalamata olives
- Cucumbers (I like small English cucumbers)
- Steamed veggies (I used asparagus)
- Steamed grains-Brown rice, quinoa, long-grain red rice, lentils or a mix
- Tzatziki sauce
- A few crackers or toasted pita
If you have access to lamb, that would make this bowl really come together!
Italian Inspired Bowl
This bowl has taken on many looks. I use whatever pasta I have on hand and this really freshens it up each time. Feel free to use the vegetables you love and have fun with this one. My bowl includes:
- Ravioli (we like spinach and cheese)
- Rotisserie chicken
- Green peas
- Fresh grape tomatoes
- Onions and garlic sautéed in wine sauce
- Top with grated Parmesan cheese
Change this one up a bit by switching the wine sauce for a marinara of your choice. Also good with crunchy bread!
Cuban Inspired Bowl
Picadillo, Cuban Style, is such a comfort food at our house. I usually save it for winter, but since creating this bowl version we eat it often! My bowl includes:
- Steamed white rice
- Sautéed green pepper and onion
- Ground beef or bison
- Green Olives
- Tomato sauce combined with dry Vermouth
Serve with toasted sourdough bread and a glass of tea. So satisfying!
Most importantly, find new ways to enjoy dinner at home. This gives us more time with the ones we love, keeps us healthier, and gives our brains a chance to be creative. I hope you will be inspired, turn on some lively music, and share your dinner bowl ideas with me! Bon Appetit!