The Meal Plan

Fiber Up: 8 Extra-Hearty Grain Bowl Recipes

Colorful, nutritious grain bowl recipes are all over restaurant menus, recipe sites and Pinterest pages. Whether you’re omnivore, vegetarian or vegan, grain bowls are a great way to nourish yourself. They’re here to stay, and we couldn’t be healthier about it. Check out 8 of our more filling grain bowl recipes — hey, we can’t survive on salads, either — and get ready to upload another gorgeous dinner to your Instagram.

Spring Celebration Bowl

I like to cook up big batches of grains along with a few sauces or salad dressings on Sundays. This makes weekday mealtime (specifically lunch) really easy for us. Lunch is the toughest meal of the day because I have no prep time — but a simple bowl of grains, some veggies, fried egg, and a sauce makes for a stress-free and energizing midday meal. This soul-soothing bowl truly celebrates the bounty of spring.

This hearty vegetarian grain bowl is as beautiful to look at as it is delicious.

Labneh and Roasted Carrot Grain Bowl

Bowls of hearty whole grains topped with healthful, delicious fare are a trend that will outlast any fad pastry or rainbow this-or-that. Join food stylist and recipe developer Anna Hampton as she explores the wide world of ancient strains, gluten-free options and other filling, fiber-rich grains that pair beautifully with fresh vegetables, home-fermented foods and lean proteins for a meal that looks as good as it tastes. This labneh and roasted carrot bowl that will make you swoon for farro.

Looking for a vibrant new gluten-free grain side dish? Look no further than this tangy buckwheat salad!

Tangy Buckwheat and Barberry Salad

Inspiration for this salad came from a very traditional Jewish dish called kasha varnishkes. Otherwise known as buckwheat, kasha is a gluten-free grain similar in appearance to freekeh and offers a protein-rich alternative to carb-heavy grains such as couscous or rice. Its nutty flavor lends itself really well to this powerful dressing.

Protein, whole grains and veggies, all in one happy, satisfying bowl.

Multigrain Polenta with Pesto Eggs

Make the polenta on Sunday, and you can enjoy it all week long. A quick scramble of pesto-laced eggs and some seared vegetables will get your day off to a seriously well-fed start. The polenta can be a great swap for grains in other bowls, too, and these toppings work just as well with amaranth or teff.

Creamy burrata and hearty freekeh liven up with the help of citrus zest.

Zesty Burrata and Freekeh Salad with Blood Orange

This is a very happy confluence of ingredients; smoky nuttiness from the freekeh, earthiness from the chard, a creamy sweetness from the burrata, all pulled together by the fragrant, sweet-sour citrus. The bergamot is purely optional as its flavor is subtle here, but if you can, please do: bergamots are still in season (just) when blood oranges come in, so it should be possible to find them. Use lemon zest instead if not.

Red quinoa ratatouille is what’s for dinner. Get your veggie on with healthy grains and fresh produce.

Red Quinoa Ratatouille

Pass the red quinoa ratatouille! Bowls of hearty whole grains topped with healthful, delicious fare are a trend that will outlast any fad pastry or rainbow this-or-that. Join food stylist and recipe developer Anna Hampton as she explores the wide world of ancient strains, gluten-free options and other filling, fiber-rich grains that pair beautifully with fresh vegetables, home-fermented foods and lean proteins for a meal that looks as good as it tastes.

A quick pork tenderloin roast is the star of this colorful, nutritious and easy meal.

Roast Pork Bowl with Asparagus

This Mediterranean-flavored dinner-in-a-bowl starts with lemon-scented bulgur and layers on pork and vegetables roasted side-by-side. Top it off with a drizzle of creamy hummus sauce.

A silky blob of burrata elevates this simple asparagus polenta to superstar status.

Asparagus Polenta with Burrata

A soft mound of polenta is a blank canvas of a meal, ready to absorb whatever you’re in the mood to put on top. I’ll often cook up a potful as a landing pad for all kinds of leftovers that aren’t quite substantial enough to be called dinner on their own—those couple of tablespoons of last night’s braised short ribs, a container of sautéed veggies, that small amount of cooked beans that have no other destination. In this recipe, the polenta is a bed for roasted asparagus and burrata cheese — a kind of mozzarella that oozes cream when you poke it.