Easy Lunch Bowl

Easy lunchBowlAre there any food trends you’re hooked on? Moi? I’ve flipped for bowling, aka   building a meal in a bowl.  I think this trend is here to stay. Sorry plate!  Bowls encourage smaller portions, and  combining  layers of veggies, along with whole grains, is ultimately what we hope more people embrace.  This concept inspired my Real California Breakfast Bowl, and  it’s also helping me cut back on food waste by  using leftovers in tasty bowls I create for lunch. So of courseRadishes aren’t just for salads, they make tasty sides and the greens are edible!, I was thrilled to see  the Recipe Redux theme this month focus on lunch:

 Limping Along with lunch: Ever get in a lunch rut? Need new ideas for packing your kids’ or your own lunch? Are packable noontime options dwindling? Surely you’ve met the ‘What shall I pack for lunch?” question head-on with creative ideas. Please share your healthy lunch recipe – so we can swap it into our own rotation.

Yesterday at noon,  I gathered up some leftovers from earlier in the week, added them to a bowl,  tossed it in the microwave,   and  then topped it off with some coleslaw and a bold barbeque sauce. Simple, right? You can use whatever you have on hand. Just think about  adding texture and flavor!

If you’re packing a lunch, this would be just as simple to pack into a portable bowl. Use one that’s  microwave safe,  if you plan on reheating the ingredients, and pack cole slaw and bbq sauce separately.

Oh, one more tip for an easy lunch this time of year…enjoy it in some fresh air.

IMG_4181IMHO, this bowl would be perfectly fine eaten cold. Would you eat this cold? Be sure to visit the links at the bottom of this post for more ideas to get  out of the lunchtime rut!
easy lunch bowlEasy Lunch Bowl

serves one

by Diane Boyd MBA, RD, LDN


  • 1/2 cup cooked brown rice , quinoa or other whole grain
  • 1/2 cup cooked corn
  • 1/3 cup canned black beans, rinsed
  • 3 ounces cooked chicken breast or other lean protein source
  • 1/2 cup cole slaw , salsa or relish
  • fresh rosemary for garnish

for the sauce

  • 1 tablespoons bbq sauce
  • 1 talbespoon cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil


For the sauce

Combine bbq sauce, cider vinegar and olive oil in a small bowl. Whisk to combine. Set aside.

for the bbq bowl

Add brown rice, corn, black beans and chicken side by side to a single serving bowl or microwavable container. Place in microwave and heat on high for 2 minutes or until heated through. Finish with cole slaw and garnish with fresh rosemary. Serve with bbq sauce for dipping or dizzle over top.

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Real California Breakfast Bowl

Build a better breakfast bowl in 5 minutes with Real California Dairy. Cottagechees (3)Disclosure: By posting this recipe I am entering a Recipe Redux contest sponsored by Real California Milk products and am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.

Have you noticed, people are changing the way they eat? We’re eating simplier. We’re eating less processed foods. We’re cutting back on sugar and adding in more fruits and vegetables. We’re experimenting with  a myriad of whole grains, from quinoa to  sorghum. But  one thing hasn’t changed: the foodie in all of us is not willing to compromise taste! Make no mistake, allowing taste to rule  is a good thing!  Satisfaction can be, and should be,  a goal for healthy eating. (We tend to eat less when we’re satisified.)

So how do you enjoy the taste of eating right? Here’s one of my  secrets:  California Dairy. California is the country’s leading producer of milk, ice cream, butter, nonfat dry milk, and whey protein. It’s  the second largest producer of cheese and yogurt.  Real California Milk represents the simple and real dairy foods made with milk from more than 1,400 California dairy families. It’s real food made by real familes kissed by the California sun. When purchasing dairy products, look for foods made with 100% Real California milk that feature the Real California Milk or Cheese Seal..realcaliforniaseals_705x237

When you see this seal, you’ll feel good knowing that the product is certified as having been made with 100% Real California Milk from Real California Dairy families.

Today, Real California Cottage Cheese is at the heart of my  wholesome breakfast bowl. IMG_4138Prepping it, is as simple as combining these  five ingredients (and fresh mint to make it pop) ..IMG_4161.3..into  cereal bowls side by side.    Then spoon  into the  layers and savor the texture and terrific taste and of eating real food, real simple. One single bowl has  only 320 calories and is filled to the brim with  benefits including:  a source of healthy fats and  whole grains, protein rich (18 grams per serving), high in  fiber (6 grams) and a source of both calcium and iron. It’s as delicious, as it is eye appealing. Join me in enjoying the taste of eating right,  build yourself a Real California Breakfast Bowl!CottageCheeseB-fastBowl

Want to learn more about Real California seals and California Dairy? Visit the Real California Milk website at www.RealCaliforniaMilk.com.

Real California Breakfast Bowl

by Diane Boyd

Ingredients (serves 2)

  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup frozen Wild Blueberries
  • 1 cup 1 % milkfat lowfat Real California Cottage Cheese
  • 2 tablespoons pecan pieces
  • 2 teaspoons pure maple syrup
  • fresh mint, optional garnish


for the oatmeal

Combine water, oats and salt in a 2 cup microwave safe container. Microwave on high for 2 1/2 to 3 minutes. Mix well. Set aside.

to assemble breakfast bowl

1. Place frozen wild blueberries in a microwave safe bowl. Use defrost setting for 1 minute or until thawed.

2. Arrange prepared oatmeal, cottage cheese, blueberries and pecans side by side in two cereal bowls. Drizzle each bowl with maple syrup. Garnish with fresh mint.

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