Fill up on greens, protein, and healthy fats with this Lemony Arugula Grain Bowl. With loads of flavor and substitution options, this is bound to make it into your dinner rotation.
If you’ve been a part of the Live Eat Learn world for a while, you’ve probably seen a Buddha Bowl or twelve pop up! These bowls are meals filled with ingredients that typically target the main macros and provide a boatload of nutrients. Buddha’s Delight is one of my favorites!
Well, this lemony arugula grain bowl is quite similar. It’s loaded with protein, greens, nuts, and even cheese, and it tastes delicious with a zingy lemon dressing. The nutty arugula flavor really brings out the pistachios and creates a killer flavor combo!
This meal uses basic ingredients and is ready in 30 minutes. It provides 4 large servings, making it great for meal prepping! If you’re using it as this week’s meal prep lunch, I recommend storing the dressing and arugula in separate containers to keep everything nice and fresh.
“I’m not usually a fan of quinoa but I took a chance on this recipe because I like being open minded. I’m so glad I did! Loved this full of flavor salad. I replaced the feta with fresh Parmesan. A new favorite for sure. Thanks Sarah” —Liz
How to create your own arugula grain bowl
Let’s dive into creating this grain bowl! Cook the quinoa, whip together the dressing, assemble, and enjoy!
Step 1: Prepare the grain
First, cook the quinoa (or other grain) according to the instructions on the package. You will need 1 cup uncooked, which will amount to about 3 cups once cooked. Don’t love quinoa? Try using another ancient grain like bulgur, farro, or sorghum here!
Step 2: Create the dressing
While your grains cook, create the dressing. Start by grating the zest of half of the lemon. Set the zest aside. Juice 1 lemon and divide the juice in half. Whisk together half of the lemon juice, 2 cloves of minced garlic, 1 tsp of dijon mustard, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Toss 4 cups of arugula with the dressing. (We’re saving the lemon zest and half of the juice for later!)
Step 3: Flavor the grain
When the quinoa is done cooking, fluff it with a fork and fold in the reserved lemon zest, remaining lemon juice, and another pinch of salt and pepper.
Step 4: Assemble the bowl
You can either mix the ingredients all together in a large salad bowl, or portion them into individual serving bowls. Start by laying the base of seasoned quinoa and dressed arugula.
Next up, feta! You can also use goat cheese here, or omit the cheese entirely to make these grain bowls vegan.
Navy beans add a nice texture and nutrient-boost to these bowls. Feel free to use pinto beans, black beans, or even chickpeas here.
Finish it off with pistachios! I prefer to buy these shelled and lightly salted. You could also use sunflower seeds, pine nuts, shaved almonds, or walnuts here.
Quinoa Arugula Bowl Variations
Want to amp things up with extra toppings? Most salad toppings will work, but some definite key players include tomatoes, avocado, green peppers, radishes, onions, and watercress. You can also sub in your favorite beans, nuts, and cheese, whether that be black beans, kidney beans, peanuts, pecans, goat, or blue cheese! Don’t like arugula? Spinach is similar to arugula in texture and nutrition, but with a more mild flavor!
More arugula recipes
Arugula’s nutty flavor makes it great for recipes with nuts, but it works in so many other ways too. You can enjoy it on foods cold or hot!
- Roasted Butternut Chickpea Hummus Wraps
- Asparagus Pizza with Burrata and Arugula
- Citrus Watercress Salad
- Blueberry Balsamic Grilled Cheese
- 1 cup uncooked quinoa 175 g
- 2 cups water 475 mL
- 1 lemon
- 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil 30 mL
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tsp dijon mustard 5 g
- Pinch of salt and pepper
- 4 handfuls arugula
- ½ cup cubed feta 75 g
- 1 can navy beans drained
- ¼ cup shelled pistachios 28 g
- Quinoa: Cook quinoa according to instructions on the package.
- Dressing: Meanwhile, grate the zest off of half of the lemon and reserve. Juice the lemon and divide juice in half. Whisk together half of the lemon juice oil, garlic, mustard, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Toss together the arugula and the dressing.
- Season Quinoa: When quinoa is finished cooking, fluff it with a fork then fold in the lemon zest, remaining lemon juice, and a pinch of salt and pepper.
- Assemble: Into 4 serving bowls, layer the quinoa, arugula, feta, beans, and pistachios.