Homemade Pesto Bowl

Making your own pesto is FUN and super gratifying! This is a basic pasta bowl (brown rice bow ties, bibb lettuce, avocado, tomato -- my go to's) topped with homemade pesto (2 cups basil, juice of 1 lemon, quarter cup of olive oil, salt, pepper, half a cup of pine nuts in a food processor until creamy -- ingredient amount may vary depending on the texture you want your pesto to be - when I used these proportions, mine was pretty watery, which I liked, but if you prefer it thicker, you could add more basil and experiment with less olive oil). 

Brown Rice Bowl

Have you guys ever been to Freshii? It's one of my favorite "fast-food" restaurants and I love ordering the Pangoa bowl. Here, I tried to make my own version of this bowl using short-grain brown rice (cooked in water, yes, but also a drop of coconut oil because...of course), sweet corn, black beans, bibb lettuce, tomato, avocado, a sprinkle of sharp cheddar cheese, a drop of bbq sauce, and a squeeze of lime. This is very good. 

Chickpea Pasta?!

If you haven't tried chickpea pasta, get on the bandwagon! Same texture as pasta, but with a million times the protein/capacity to truly fill you for longer. My favorite brand is banza. Here it's mixed with pesto, lettuce, tomato, avocado, microgreens, and some balsamic sprinkled on top. 

Quinoa Pasta #2

Here's another variation of my quinoa pasta dishes. Here, I've mixed it with pesto/chia seeds again, brussel sprout/cauliflower rice, green beans, baby kale and broccoli all lightly sauteed in coconut oil and red pepper flakes. I added two pieces of steamed veggie gyoza on the side (trader joes <3). 

Quinoa Pasta

I'm a big fan of quinoa based pastas. I love the texture of pasta but love the nutritional value of quinoa even more, so this is a great in-between. I recommend making a batch of pasta at the beginning of the week and then mixing and matching it with different combos of food (see below) on different days. Above, I mixed it with pesto, organic peas, heirloom tomatoes, bibb lettuce, avocado, and sprinkled it with chia seeds. All I had to do beforehand was prep the pasta/peas, and I prepared my tomatoes/avocados/lettuce at school in under 10 mins. 

*Quinoa pasta disclaimer: this pasta tends to get drier than other pastas/sticks together when refrigerated. When I'm ready to eat a new small batch of it, I'll usually drop a small dollop of coconut oil into my dish and then microwave for a couple of minutes. The coconut oil tastes great, is great for you, and also prevents your pasta from being sticky or hard/having a weird consistency.