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Quinoa Bowl

Chicken, avocado and black beans make a hearty, healthy topping for our super-nutritious quinoa bowl.


Quinoa Bowl 7

Cliché for a Reason

We know, we know—sharing a bunch of healthy recipes in January is to run the risk of feeling a bit cliché. But this kind of food—simple, healthy, veggie-loaded, protein-rich food—is what we crave right now and we’re betting you are, too. Quinoa bowls are a great catch-all, an easy way to turn what you’ve got around into a healthy, filling meal. Plus, our quinoa bowl sauce—a super savory, creamy, plant-based dressing made with edamame, garbanzo beans and nutritional yeast—really ties everything together.

ingredients laid out for a healthy quinoa bowl with black beans chipotle vegan dressing shredded chicken cilantro carrots

A Truly Delicious Quinoa Bowl Dressing

Loaded with black beans, chicken and (obviously) quinoa, this healthy bowl recipe is already a protein bomb, before you’ve even added the dressing. But you guys—this dressing. Smoky, savory and creamy, it’s also a really great source of protein, B12s and so many other good things for your body. All you do is combine all of these ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth:

  • Almond flour
  • Garbanzo beans
  • Edamame (aka soy beans).
  • Nutritional yeast
  • Olive oil
  • Water
  • Lemon juice
  • Chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
  • Cilantro
  • Garlic cloves
  • Curry powder
  • Oregano
cooked quinoa in a pan
vegan cashew chipotle cream sauce in a bowl

Quinoa Bowls 101: How to Assemble the Best Quinoa Bowl Ever.

This chicken quinoa bowl recipe is easy to throw together on a weeknight—it just takes about 30 minutes—but it’s also the ideal make-ahead meal. Prep all of the separate elements of the bowl on the weekend, and then you’ve got super healthy, filling lunches for the week! Just assemble when you’re ready for a quick and healthy meal. Here’s how to make a delicious quinoa bowl:

  1. Cook quinoa. If you buy from the bulk bins, you should rinse the quinoa before boiling. A lot of boxed quinoa brands are “pre-rinsed”.
  2. While the quinoa simmers, prep the toppings and the dressing!
  3. Dressing: dump all of the quinoa bowl dressing ingredients into a blender (or use an immersion blender) and blend until the sauce is smooth and creamy.
  4. Assemble your quinoa bowls! Oh right—another awesome thing about doing quinoa bowls for dinner is that they’re naturally customizable. If you’ve got picky eaters in the house, try laying out all of the various topping options and letting everyone just assemble their bowls as they please. If you leave the chicken off, suddenly you’ve got a vegan quinoa bowl! If you were to top the bowl with nothing BUT chicken and dressing, you’d still be able to call that a pretty healthy dinner. In other words, everybody wins!
quinoa chicken black bean bowl with avocado, tomatoes and a cashew cream sauce

Quinoa Bowl Toppings

Simple and healthy. That’s our mantra this month, and specifically for this quinoa recipe. Toppings-wise, we made use of things we already usually have around, and you can feel free to do the same. The toppings we suggest aren’t written in stone—use what you’ve got, or what you need to use up. Here are some quinoa bowl toppings we love:

  • Roasted vegetables. They’re slightly smoky flavor goes perfectly with our chipotle dressing.
  • Avocado and more avocado. Rich and creamy, it makes the quinoa bowl feel a little indulgent.
  • Black beans. We’ve usually got a few cans of beans in the pantry, and they really bulk this bowl up!
  • Chicken! We love to poach chicken on the weekends to use throughout the week, and this is one of our favorite healthy ways to use it.
  • Baked tofu! If you’re trying to eat less (or no) meat, baked tofu is a great alternative to chicken. High in iron and protein, your body won’t know the difference.
quinoa salad bowl with tomatoes black beans and chicken

Tools You’ll Need:

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5 More Healthy Bowl Recipes

Bowls are a simple way to mix-and-match flavors and textures that you love, and to serve healthy meals to your family without a lot of fuss. Here are five of our faves:

Quinoa Bowl 7

Bowls for Days

Truly—we could eat these quinoa bowls for days. And we often do! We hope you love them as much as we do! Let us know what you topped your bowl with! Snap a photo and tag us on Instagram using @themodernproper and #themodernproper. Happy eating!

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Quinoa Bowl

  • Serves: 4
  • Prep Time:  20 min
  • Cook Time:  25 min
  • Calories: 558




  • 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 1/2 cup canned garbanzo beans, rinsed and peeled
  • 1/3 cup frozen shelled edamame, cooked
  • 1/3 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 3/4 cup filtered water
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 chipotle peppers, in adobo sauce
  • 2 tbsp cilantro
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt


  1. Pour rinsed quinoa and stock of choice in a medium saucepan that has a tight fitting lid. Bring to a boil. Once the quinoa has begun to boil, reduce to a simmer, cover and cook for 25 minutes or until all liquid has evaporated. Remove from heat and let stand for 5 minutes. Fluff with fork and set aside.
  2. In a food processor blend all sauce ingredients until creamy texture is achieved. This should take about 5-10 minutes of blending. Store in your refrigerator for up to two weeks in a jar with a tight fitting lid.
  3. To assemble bowl, toss the quinoa with the sauce. Top with a generous amount of vegetables and chicken. Garnish with cilantro and a little more sauce.

Nutrition Info

  • Per Serving
  • Amount
  • Calories558
  • Protein18 g
  • Carbohydrates37 g
  • Total Fat39 g
  • Dietary Fiber12 g
  • Cholesterol30 mg
  • sodium402 mg
  • Total Sugars5 g

Quinoa Bowl

Questions & Reviews

Join the discussion below.

  • Gene

    So 1 cup of quinoa makes enough for four people

    Yep! it is 1 cup uncooked so it will yield about 3 cups cooked. Hope you enjoy!

  • Jennifer

    I do not have almond flour - can I use regular flour in its place?

    That should work ok but we'd start with less and then check consistency and add more if needed.

  • Brenda

    Can I make a quinoa bowl in the Instant Pot ?

    Not sure what you mean, you can cook the quinoa in an instant pot.

  • G

    I made this yesterday and ate my first bowl for lunch today. It was very good! I made a few tweaks—pecorino romano instead of nutritional yeast, almond meal, rather than flour, and some of the extra garbanzos instead of Brussels sprouts. Thanks for the recipe!

    You are welcome! We love this recipe! I'll have to try it with pecorino some time!

  • Jeremy

    This sauce is the greatest thing I have ever tasted! I want to put it on EVERYTHING!!

    Thank you Jeremy!!!

  • Cindy

    This recipe is fantastic. Love the dressing. Want to put it on everything!