Za'atar, a Middle Eastern spice mixture, flavors this Roasted Vegetable Quinoa Bowl, topped with fresh spinach, cucumbers and lemon tahini dressing.
This vegan bowl recipe is healthy, gluten free and easily made in just 30 minutes! It's great for a quick & easy lunch, dinner or meal prep!
Hello gorgeous! This brightly colored bowl is filled with fresh, vitamin packed veggies and tons of flavor! I guarantee you're going to love this recipe! It's good for your body and for your taste buds!
What is Za'atar?
Za'atar refers to both an herb and a spice mixture. The spice mixture contains the herb, which is also known as hyssop, as well as sesame seeds, sumac, coriander seeds and salt.
Authentic za'atar containing hyssop can easily be found online, or in Middle Eastern or Mediterranean grocery stores. Za'atar can now be found in the spice aisle of some American grocery stores, but generally contains oregano, in place of the hyssop.
Want to make this recipe today and don't have any za'atar in your spice cabinet? You can easily make your own homemade za'atar using dried thyme or oregano.
How to make the bowls
- Cook the quinoa. If you don't already have prepared quinoa on hand, check out this post for 3 ways to cook quinoa, in an Instant Pot, rice cooker or on the stove. The quinoa will cook in the time it will take you to prepare all of the other ingredients for the bowls.
- Prepare the lemon tahini dressing. Head to the link provided to grab this lemon tahini dressing recipe. It's made with a combination of lemon juice, tahini and garlic. This dressing is so flavorful & easy to make in just 5 minutes!
- Prepare the vegetables for roasting. Toss diced sweet potatoes, bell peppers and onions together in a large bowl with olive oil. Add za'atar, paprika and cayenne pepper, then toss the vegetables in the spices. Arrange the vegetables in an even layer on a foil-lined baking sheet.
- Note: to peel or not to peel? I do not peel the sweet potatoes, I simply scrub them clean, then dice them up. It's easier and the sweet potato skins provide more vitamins. If you prefer sweet potatoes without the skins, feel free to peel them before dicing and roasting them!
- Roast the vegetables. Place the vegetables in the oven, preheated to 425°F for 15 - 20 minutes, or until the potatoes are fork tender.
- Put the bowls together. Divide the quinoa between four bowls. Top with the roasted veggies, diced cucumbers, chopped spinach and cherry tomatoes. Drizzle the prepared lemon tahini sauce over the bowls.
What to do with leftover lemon tahini sauce
You'll only need about half of the lemon tahini sauce recipe for these bowls. Luckily, it's delicious on a number of different recipes and will stay good in the refrigerator for up to 10 days! Try it on these bowls:
- Roasted Broccoli Bowls
- Charred Cauliflower Bowls
- Moroccan Roasted Carrot & Chickpea Bowls
- Kale Beet Salad
Make the bowls low carb
- Replace the quinoa with cauliflower rice. This substitution will reduce the carbs per bowl from 56 grams to 40 grams.
- Replace the sweet potatoes with four cups diced zucchini. Using this lower carb vegetable and replacing the quinoa with cauliflower rice will reduce the carbs per bowl from 56 grams down to 21 grams per bowl.
Meal prep the bowls
- For storage: prepare the quinoa, roasted vegetables and lemon tahini sauce. Divide the cooked quinoa and roasted vegetables between four large plastic storage containers. Place the spinach, cucumbers and tomatoes in a separate smaller container or Ziplock bag and add it to the larger container, along with the lemon tahini dressing, placed in a small salad dressing container.
- To reheat and eat: remove the spinach, tomato, cucumber and lemon tahini dressing from the larger container. Place the quinoa and roasted vegetables in the microwave. Reheat for 2 minutes. Remove from the microwave and top with the spinach, cucumber, tomatoes and lemon tahini dressing.
Add a protein to the bowls
- For a plant based protein addition to this bowl, add a 15 ounce can of chickpeas. The chickpeas can be drained and rinsed from a can and added directly to the bowl, or roasted with the vegetables. Adding ½ cup chickpeas to each bowl, will add 6 grams of protein per bowl for a total of 16 grams of protein per bowl.
- If roasting the chickpeas with the vegetables, drain and rinse the chickpeas then toss them in the olive oil and seasoning with the vegetables. Roast as instructed in the recipe.
- For a meat based protein addition to these bowls, add one pound roasted chicken. Chicken breasts can be roasted with the vegetables and easily added to these bowls. Adding 4 oz chicken to each bowl will add 25 grams of protein per bowl for a total of 35 grams of protein per bowl.
- To add the chicken, pound one pound of boneless, skinless chicken breasts until they're one inch thick. At this thickness, the chicken will roast at the same time as the vegetables. Drizzle the chicken with olive oil, then sprinkle 1 teaspoon za'atar and ½ teaspoon paprika over the chicken. Place the chicken on a baking sheet and roast in the oven at the same time and temperature as the vegetables. Remove the chicken from the oven, dice and add to the bowls.
More vegan recipes
Looking for more plant based bowls? Try these 5 easy, vegan recipes!
- Sweet Potato Vegan Burrito Bowl
- Quinoa Bowls with Grilled Vegetables and Chimichurri Sauce
- Chipotle Cauliflower Vegan Taco Bowl
- Veggie Fajita Salad
- Crispy Asian Brussels Sprout Bowl
Za'atar Roasted Vegetable Quinoa Bowl
Za’atar Roasted Vegetables
- 1 lb sweet potato small dice
- 1 cup green bell pepper diced
- 1 cup red bell pepper diced
- 1 cup red onion diced
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tsp Za’atar
- 1 tsp paprika
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- Preheat the oven to 425°F.
- Add the sweet potatoes, bell peppers and onions to a large bowl, toss with the olive oil, then add the za’atar, paprika and cayenne pepper and toss until all of the vegetables are coated in the seasoning.
- Arrange the vegetables in an even layer on a foil-lined baking sheet.
- Place in the oven to roast for 15-20 minutes, or until the sweet potatoes are fork tender.
- Divide the cooked quinoa between four bowls.
- Add the roasted vegetables, spinach, cherry tomatoes and cucumber.
- Top with the lemon tahini dressing.
- The sweet potatoes can be roasted peeled or unpeeled, it's really a personal preference. If roasting them with the skins on, be sure to scrub the sweet potatoes clean before dicing and roasting them.