Last updated on May 8th, 2019 at 08:18 am
These vegan meal prep bowls with chickpeas and greens are perfect if you don’t have any time to cook during the next few days. They make a healthy dinner recipe that is gluten-free, full of flavor, antioxidants, fiber, and essential nutrients.
Don’t know what’s happening with me lately, but I’ve been crazy about broccoli and spinach. Just slap me and don’t feel guilty about it, I’ll accept it.
I don’t even care. 7 years ago, I made fun of my friend for ordering broccoli with blue cheese in a restaurant when we were at a bachelorette party.
I’m thinking about broccoli and spinach in all their forms – in salads, on pizza, in bowls, everywhere. I’m thinking maybe it’s spring…we do need some greens and vitamins to say
So I was making that spinach and broccoli thing multiple times a day, every single day for a week…One day I just decided to stop wasting time and to actually meal prep it, so I can work and not spend my entire life in the kitchen washing and chopping spinach and broccoli.
That’s right, I decided to swallow my pride and the little bit of throw up that came into my mouth when I started thinking about old food. And I did it. It took me about 16 years to make these chickpea meal prep bowls, but they’re worth it. And so good I actually did eat them the next 2 days for dinner. (huge for me!).
Good Meal Prep Foods?
Here are some good foods for meal prep:
- roasted vegetables
- cooked legumes and grains
- cooked animal protein (if not vegan)
- hummus (here’s also a low carb recipe)
- dips with roasted vegetables like this one
- tzatziki (here’s a herby paleo-vegan version that keeps well in the fridge)
Great meal ideas (in my experience) are soups, bowls, curries, muffins, energy bars.
The foods I wouldn’t use for meal prep is fresh fruits and vegetables that spoil fast (for example tomatoes, cucumbers, watermelon, strawberries).
How To Keep Meal Prep Food Fresh?
Now, okay, let’s be honest. I arranged this next “bowl” only for the picture. Then I ate it right away out of that glass container like a hungry animal.
The way I actually kept the rest of the recipe, the way I feel allows me to keep my meals fresh and customizable, is to simply separate the different parts of the bowl in different containers. I used a recycled jar for the hummus, I put the greens and chickpeas in separate glass containers I believe I bought at IKEA hundred years ago. This way I can warm up whatever needs to be warm before I eat and keep the cool stuff cool.
I also washed (but did not chop) some vegetables, so I can always have a fresh salad on the side. Cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, cabbage, herbs, even lettuce – you can pre-wash all that, let it dry (I usually empty the dish rack and let them air dry there) and keep them in the fridge.
I know many people even pre-chop the vegetables, but the reason I don’t do this is that most of the enzymes and the most powerful antioxidants disappear within minutes after you cut a vegetable (or fruit). For example, if I chop up cabbage on Monday, the level of cancer-fighting chemicals it contains drops dramatically.
Now, of course, this happens also with the broccoli and spinach we’ve prepared, but they still do contain essential nutrients and when you eat a fresh salad or drink a smoothie on the same day – you’re doing good. No need to do everything perfectly. But just keep in mind some of the non-essential nutrients (which have extra health benefits) disappear when you let food sit prepared for too long.
How To Make Vegan Meal Prep Chickpea Bowls?
You don’t need a lot to make this healthy plant-based bowl, it’s pretty easy.
- You start with a can of chickpeas that you cook with some herbs, spices and olive oil in a pan.
- Take that out, add the spinach, broccoli and some scallions to the pan and cook that for a little bit.
- In the meantime, you’re making the hummus or buying it – whatever you decide.
- I decided to also make this herby & garlicky cream cheese but used sunflower seed butter instead of whole sunflower seeds.
- Oh, and I actually fried one carrot, which was delicious, but
time-consuming, so the option you’ll see in the recipe below is cooking the carrot with the spinach and broccoli.
- Arrange all that in a bowl and enjoy!
Vegan meal prep chickpea bowls with broccoli, hummus, and spinach – this flavorful plant-based dinner keeps in the fridge for 3 days!
- 2 cups chickpeas, canned
- 1 tsp mint, dried
- 1 tsp coriander
- 1 tsp basil, dried
- 1/2-1tsp chili powder
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 2 Tbsp sesame seeds
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 3 cups spinach, chopped
- 1 cup broccoli florets, chopped
- 2 scallions, chopped
- 1 carrot, chopped (optional)
- black pepper
- 1/4 cup olives, pitted, chopped
- herby cream cheese dip
- Rinse and drain the chickpeas. Add drained chickpeas to a non-stick pan with 1 tbsp olive oil and cook for 1-2 minutes, medium-high heat. Add the mint, coriander, basil, chili and minced garlic clove. Stir together and add the sesame seeds, stirring in so that chickpeas are covered with the sesame seeds and herbs. Cook for 2-3 more minutes, taste and add salt if needed, then transfer to a bowl.
- You can use the same pan for the spinach and broccoli. Add 1 tbsp olive oil, the spinach, broccoli, scallions, carrot, a pinch of salt and black pepper. Cover with a lid and cook like this for 2-3 minutes at medium heat. Then uncover stir, cover again and cook for 2 more minutes. Turn the heat off and transfer in another bowl.
- Arranging the bowls: In a bowl arrange 1/3 of the broccoli and spinach, chickpeas, 2 Tbsp hummus, 1 tbsp herby cream cheese dip and a handful of olives. Serve immediately or keep in the fridge for up to 3 days.*
*For maximum flexibility, I kept the ingredients in separate containers in the fridge.
I hope you enjoy this tasty chickpea recipe if you do decide to make it!