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Mexican Buddha Bowl with Cilantro Lime Sauce

May 4, 2018
Two black bowls, filled with cubes of sweet potato, sliced red pepper, black beans, diced red onion, sliced avocado, kernels of corn and pieces of red cabbage, set on a table with a white sauce in a jar, some lime wedges and a bunch of loose cilantro
This Mexican Buddha Bowl with Cilantro Lime Sauce brings together taco-seasoned sweet potatoes, corn, avocado, red peppers and red onion, with a garlicky, creamy cilantro lime sauce.  It’s delicious!  Perfect for Cinco de Mayo, Meatless Monday (or Taco Tuesday!), or just regular days when you want a clean eating (easy to prep) meal.

Two black bowls, filled with cubes of sweet potato, sliced red pepper, black beans, diced red onion, sliced avocado, kernels of corn and pieces of red cabbage, set on a table with a white sauce in a jar, some lime wedges, loose cilantro and a purple cloth

It’s almost Cinco de Mayo again friends!  And while I love Mexican-inspired food at any time of year, it’s feels a little extra special right now.
This recipe for Mexican Buddha Bowls with Cilantro Lime Sauce is going to be in our meal rotation year round, though.
It’s SUPER healthy, packed with lots of nutritional powerhouse foods, like sweet potatoes, black beans, avocado and red peppers.  There’s no meat in my recipe, but you could certainly add some chicken or steak if you want to – I’m sure it would be delicious!  I love how versatile this Mexican Buddha Bowl is – if you’re vegetarian, it’s perfect.  Even if you’re vegan or allergic to dairy you could just switch up the sauce and bam – vegan Mexican Buddha Bowl.   It’s even gluten free!
The beans make it super filling, and the cilantro lime sauce is garlicky and so flavourful and brings the whole bowl together.  You won’t be able to stop eating it!
It also love that it makes a pretty inexpensive meal.  Meatless meals are a great way to save money on groceries, you can pick up sweet potatoes on sale and they keep for a long time if you store them in a cool place.  Canned (or even better – dried beans) are inexpensive and so is frozen corn.  We use plain yogurt in the sauce and that’s an inexpensive and healthy staple in our house, for all the reasons you can explore here.  And a little mayo, of course.  It just needed it 🙂
Finally, if you’re into clean eating, or trying to accomplish meal prep on the weekends, this recipe is an easy way to do both.  It calls for taco seasoning, but we make ours from scratch (so no weird ingredients and it takes less than 5 minutes!) and keep it in the cupboard for when we want to use it.  And you can definitely roast your sweet potatoes ahead of time and chop the other vegetables – then throw this bowl together in minutes, for a quick weeknight dinner or easy lunch.
Whether you’ve never tried a buddha bowl before or are just looking for new buddha bowl recipes to try out, this one’s for you.  I love it! 🙂

 Mexican Buddha Bowl with Cilantro Lime Sauce – Step-by-Step Instructions

Can of black beans, jar of mayonnaise, tub of plain yogurt, half a red cabbage, bottle of olive oil, two sweet potatoes, a red onion, a lime, a red pepper, small jar of homemade taco seasoning, an avocado, one cup of frozen corn, bunch of fresh cilantro
 Ingredients for Mexican Buddha Bowl with Cilantro Lime Sauce

Seasoned cubes of sweet potato spread on a sheet pan

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F before starting.
Wash and cut 2 sweet potatoes into chunks, spread on a sheet pan, and drizzle with your preferred oil (I like olive oil or avocado oil).  Sprinkle with 1.5 teaspoons of taco seasoning (check out our easy homemade version!), toss together, and bake in preheated oven for around 20 minutes, tossing half way through so the cubes cook evenly.

Chopped cilantro (green herb) on a wooden cutting board, with a chef's knife.

While sweet potatoes are baking, wash cilantro, chop off the big stems and mince the leaves finely – you’ll need about 2 tablespoons (I wasn’t done mincing when I took this photo).  A chef’s knife makes this a really easy and fast task.

White bowl with yogurt, mayonnaise, minced garlic, chopped cilantro and lime juice in it, set on a white counter

In a small bowl, combine 1/2 cup of plain yogurt, 1/4 cup of mayo, 1 minced clove of garlic, the 2 tablespoons of cilantro you minced a minute ago, 1 teaspoon of fresh lime juice and 1/8 teaspoon of salt.  Stir well to combine and set aside to let flavours blend.

Bowl of corn kernels, bowl of black beans, chopped red cabbage, sliced red pepper, diced red onion, sliced avocado, wedges of lime, cilantro leaves on a wooden cutting board

Cook 1 cup of frozen corn in the microwave, according to package directions (or use canned corn, if you’d rather), rinse and drain one 14-oz can of black beans, chop 1/4 cup of red cabbage (optional but pretty and healthy), slice 1/2 a red pepper into thin slices, mince 2 tablespoons of red onion (if you find the taste too strong, you can soak it in cold water for a few minutes, then drain it), slice 1/2 an avocado, slice the remaining lime into wedges and pull some more washed cilantro leaves off the stalks.

Two black bowls, filled with cubes of sweet potato, sliced red pepper, black beans, diced red onion, sliced avocado, kernels of corn and pieces of red cabbage, set on a table with a white sauce in a jar, some lime wedges and a bunch of loose cilantro

Once your sweet potatoes are cooked (I like mine to still be a bit firm – not mushy), you can either cool them completely and store everything as easy meal prep for future meals (if you do this, you might want to slice your avocado at the last minute), OR, assemble your bowls!  Just pile a little bit of each ingredient into the bowl – no need to be picky about location, unless you want it to look pretty (which I always do, haha).

Two black bowls, filled with cubes of sweet potato, sliced red pepper, black beans, diced red onion, sliced avocado, kernels of corn and pieces of red cabbage, with white sauce drizzled over it, set on a table with a white sauce in a jar, some lime wedges, loose cilantro and a purple cloth

Drizzle with cilantro lime sauce, sprinkle with fresh cilantro, and give it a little squeeze of fresh lime juice over the top.
Enjoy! 🙂

 

Mexican Buddha Bowl with Cilantro Lime Sauce
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Total Time
30 mins
 

This Mexican Buddha Bowl with Cilantro Lime Sauce brings together taco-seasoned sweet potatoes, corn, avocado, red peppers and red onion, with a garlicky, creamy cilantro lime sauce. Perfect for Cinco de Mayo, Meatless Monday (or Taco Tuesday!), or just regular days went you want a clean eating (easy to prep) meal.

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 348 kcal
Author: Myra
Ingredients
For The Mexican Buddha Bowls
  • 2 sweet potatoes
  • 1 tbsp oil (I like olive or avocado oil)
  • 1.5 tsp taco seasoning (try our easy homemade mix!*)
  • 1 cup corn (I used frozen but you can use whatever you like)
  • 1 14 oz can black beans
  • 1/4 cup red cabbage (optional, but pretty and healthy)
  • 1/2 red pepper
  • 2 tbsp red onion
  • 1/2 avocado
  • lime wedges
  • handful fresh cilantro leaves
For the Sauce
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • 1/4 cup mayo
  • 1 clove garlic (minced)
  • handful fresh cilantro (enough to make 2 minced tablespoons)
  • 1 tsp fresh lime juice
  • 1/8 tsp salt
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

  2. Wash and cube sweet potatoes.  Toss on sheet pan with oil and taco seasoning.  Bake in preheated oven for around 20 minutes (until they are as soft as you like them - I like them to be a little firm).  Toss half after first 10 minutes so they cook evenly.

  3. Wash and finely mince a handful of cilantro leaves for the sauce.  You'll need around 2 tablespoons. 


  4. In a small bowl, combine yogurt, mayo, minced cilantro, garlic, lime juice and salt.  Stir well to mix and set aside.

  5. Prep the other ingredients (cook corn in the microwave if using frozen, rinse and drain black beans, chop red cabbage, slice red pepper, dice red onion (if you find it too strong you can soak the diced onion in a bowl of cold water for a few minutes and drain well), slice avocado, cut remaining lime into wedges and wash cilantro and pull leaves off stems.

  6. Once sweet potatoes are done cooking you can cool them and refrigerate everything for an easy meal later (if you do this, wait to cut your avocado when you're ready to eat), or assemble your bowls right away.

  7. Pile 1/4 of each ingredient into a bowl, drizzle with cilantro lime sauce, sprinkle with cilantro leaves and squeeze some fresh lime juice over the top.

  8. Enjoy! 🙂

Recipe Notes
*Our Easy Homemade Taco Seasoning Mix - we make big batches of it and keep it in the cupboard so it's there when we need it! 🙂

 

QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS:

What is a Buddha Bowl?
While there don’t seem to be any strict rules about what goes into a Buddha Bowl, they are typically healthy bowls packed with vegetables, protein, and sometimes grains, drizzled with a delicious sauce.  If you spend any time on Pinterest or Instagram, you’ve likely encountered more than a few of them.  On social media, at least, they’re usually gorgeous.
According to an online article by Bon Appetit, the term was probably coined by Martha Stewart when she released her vegetarian cookbook Meatless.   The bowls are often, but not always, vegan or vegetarian, but almost exclusively healthy.
How do you make a Buddha Bowl?
Most Buddha Bowls use a combination of raw and cooked vegetables, and most of the work can be done ahead of time, which makes them perfect for healthy meal prep for the week.  If you like to spend a few hours on Sunday chopping vegetables and pre-cooking ingredients for the week, you should definitely give buddha bowls a try.  Almost all the ingredients can be prepped ahead and then assembled later for healthy, fast, easy weeknight dinners or work  lunches.  Give our Mexican Buddha Bowl recipe a try, to get a feel for it.

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