Vegan Buddha Bowl with Tempeh and Quinoa

  Nov 6, 2019  |  #Recipes

This Vegan Buddha Bowl with Tempeh and Quinoa is full of plant based protein, fiber and antioxidants, and a delightful mixture of flavors. Switch out tempeh for tofu, chicken or keep it as a veggie power bowl to switch things up!

Vegan Buddha Bowl in white bowl with quinoa, tempeh, avocado, beets, peppers, sweet potatoes

Hi, friends! Today I’m sharing a recipe from the early Bucket List Tummy days. 

As in, this was in the first few months of blogging. Obviously, the photos weren’t great and I had some text to update.

But, this quinoa power bowl recipe with tempeh in and of itself is very tasty! Hopefully, you’ll give it a try when you’re looking for easy tempeh recipes or a tempeh buddha bowl. 

This is actually the first way I introduced tempeh to Camryn. I mean she does seem to have a mature palate – she enjoys salmon, halibut and butternut squash and beets, and now we can add tempeh to the list. 

What Is A Buddha Bowl?

Have you ever had one of the panera bread grain bowls? They’re so good! You can get them cold or hot, and personalize many of the ingredients.

That was the inspiration for this vegan buddha bowl, and I feel like many buddha bowl recipes take after that.

Bowls like this have many names – macro bowls, veggie bowls, buddha bowls, power bowls. In essence, they are just a combination of tasty ingredients (to your liking) mixed in a bowl. 

closeup of buddha bowl in white bowl | Bucket List Tummy

This vegetarian buddha bowl is a great recipe for those looking to add more plant proteins to their diets. Of course, you can make it a chicken power bowl, or add ground turkey, eggs, beef, whatever you desire! 

I used tempeh because I love the consistency and texture of tempeh, and to date, this is one of my favorite tempeh recipes and among the best baked tempeh recipes, along with my favorite harvest bowl recipe

I live my life through bowls. For realsies, I could live without plates and just have bowls.

I need bowls for my oatmeal, yogurt, smoothie bowls, veggie stirfry concoctions, drippy egg yolks over anything, and of course, for power bowls (or buddha bowls), whathaveyou.

closeup of buddha bowl in white bowl | Bucket List Tummy

Basically, the power bowl gems are hearty little combo’s of veggies, grains, protein sources, sauces, nuts/seeds/toppings aka whatever you want them to be. In a bowl because bowls are awesome.

My mango lime quinoa salad is another of my favorite power bowl recipes, which is more geared towards summer and the warmer months. 

How To Make a Buddha Bowl Vegan 

To make a vegan buddha bowl, just stay away from any animal products. Remember, that also means eggs, cheese, or yogurt (if you were to make a creamy dressing), as well as honey. 

Vegan Buddha Bowl in white bowl with quinoa, tempeh, avocado, beets, peppers, sweet potatoes

To make a vegetarian buddha bowl, you can use those ingredients but no meat.  

Vegan Protein Ideas

What’s In A Vegan Buddha Bowl?

I chose to use a bunch of different veggies and starches in here.

I’ve already written about my love for tempeh, so naturally I included it in my favorite grain bowl. 

  • sweet potatoes
  • quinoa
  • avocado
  • tempeh
  • beets
  • peppers
  • beans
  • greens

closeup of buddha bowl in white bowl | Bucket List Tummy

Other Buddha Bowl Ideas: 

As mentioned earlier, you can, of course, make your own veggie power bowl or add any ingredients that you like! Power bowl recipes are endless because they can be so personalized. 

If you’re more of a tofu person, just make it a tofu buddha bowl. 

  • butternut squash
  • nuts/seeds (pepitas make a great topping)
  • avocado
  • chickpeas, lentils
  • arugula
  • tomatoes
  • lentils
  • beans
  • cheese

You could also use lemon herb cheesy quinoa to make an advanced veggie quinoa bowl or roll them into toddler quinoa bites

I feel that pretty much everything meshes well with sweet potatoes and quinoa, so starting with a foundation sweet potato buddha bowl and then adding a grain, protein source, and any veggie that you choose will be delicious. 

White bowl with beans, avocado and veggies with tahini dressing

How To Make Vegan Buddha Bowl Sauce

I think one of the best parts of buddha bowl recipes is the marinade that’s used. To me, that’s really what sets apart different iterations of power bowls.

I actually baked the tempeh the night before and then let it sit in the marinade all day to soak up the flavors before eating this bowl the following night. 

For this buddha bowl sauce marinade, I’ve used: 

  • olive oil (use an extra virgin for better taste)
  • balsamic vinegar
  • maple syrup
  • thyme
  • garlic
  • lemon juice

A Quick Buddha Bowl Dressing Recipe

I also made a quick tahini dressing (2 parts tahini, 3 parts lemon juice and water, 1/2 tsp garlic, 1/2 tsp sea salt, 1/4 tsp ground pepper) for the topping, but the dressing isn’t mandatory.

I’m a sucker for dressings though, so I usually add it. 

buddha veggie bowl with tahini dressing | Bucket List Tummy

Other Buddha Bowl Dressing Ideas:

What Are The Nutrition Benefits of Buddha Bowls?

This vegan buddha bowl is protein-packed from the quinoa, beans, and tempeh.

The Vitamin C from the peppers, the carotenoids (precursor to Vitamin A) from the sweet potatoes, and the betalains and polyphenols that the beets add all contribute to wonderful antioxidant, anti-inflammatory properties.  

And don’t forget the probiotics that tempeh offers.

It’s gluten-free and dairy free also.

Vegan Buddha Bowl in white bowl with quinoa, tempeh, avocado, beets, peppers, sweet potatoes

Vegan Buddha Bowl with Tempeh and Quinoa

Yield: 4
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

This Vegan Buddha Bowl with Tempeh and Quinoa is full of plant based protein, fiber and antioxidants, and a delightful mixture of flavors.


Buddha Bowl

  • 3 cups greens (I used spinach)
  • 1 block tempeh (see dressing below)
  • ½ cup quinoa
  • 1 can beans (I used white kidney)
  • ½ can beets
  • 1 medium sweet potato
  • 4 mini peppers
  • ½ medium avocado
  • 1-2 tbsp sesame seeds, to top (optional)
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Buddha Bowl Dressing


  1. Combine ingredients for marinade, pour over tempeh, and bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes (if you have time, you could marinade the tempeh overnight).
  2. While it is baking, cook your quinoa and beans. Put sweet potatoes in microwave for 7 minutes, or until cooked throughout.
  3. Start arranging greens as the base layer. Cut peppers and beets and arrange on top of greens layer. Once beans, quinoa and sweet potato are done, portion out space for them in the bowl. Add tempeh to bowl, and drizzle extra marinade over contents.
  4. Lastly, add avocado, and sprinkle with sesame seeds, salt and pepper, to taste.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 469Total Fat: 22gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 17gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 344mgCarbohydrates: 59gFiber: 16gSugar: 17gProtein: 16g


Vega Buddha Bowl in white bowl with tempeh and veggies with text overlay | Bucket List Tummy

Tell me,

Are you a buddha bowl fan? What’s your favorite combination?

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37 responses to “Vegan Buddha Bowl with Tempeh and Quinoa

  1. So much color!! It looks delicious! I love white beans and Idon’t get enough tempeh in my daily life. I’m more of a plate person simply because our bowls are too small, haha.
    I started yelping when I ate a friend’s restaurant and wanted to give it a good review. I imagine post-grad life when we will be trying a lot of new restaurants I will be a better yelper.
    Patients at the clinic? That sounds exciting! I’d love to hear more about that.

  2. i’m on yelp, but I hardly ever utilize it for elite things! But I’ve been on it for years. I did, however, review that terrible restaurant that we went to in New Orleans. I couldn’t help myself! This power bowl is right up my alley…except for the beans (I just can’t do beans well). But everything else, YES YES YES

  3. Yep yep yep this is my kind of meal. I’d eat everything out of bowls If i could. It just makes everything feel so cozy. This is the exact bowl I would order at a restaurant and then make myself for the whole next week… Which is basically my current week in a nutshell. Tempeh bowls galore. Beautiful pics!!

  4. Eating food in bowls is my favorite! I don’t know why, but I much prefer them to plates.
    I love tempeh (especially TJ’s brand). I’ll have to give this bowl a try. Pinned!

  5. I love the realness and authenticity of your day! I feel like I’m just chatting and eating lunch with one of my co-workers! I really need to try nutritional yeast, but I’m not really sure how or what to eat it with, but I’ve heard so much about the benefits. This power bowl looks SO good!

  6. There is something really fun about eating all your food out of bowls. I like the ‘piling it high’ factor. 🙂 That power bowl looks really delicious. I love that eating healthy can be REALLY easy as long as you are willing to be creative.

  7. I love your power bowl meals! I also find myself only eating out of bowls and not plates- weird! I want to try nutritional yeast, I feel like it’s super versatile.

  8. This vegan bowl looks delicious!! I gotta try it. And I am the same way- I live my life through bowls too lol. Whether it’s oatmeal, yogurt bowls, salad, cereal, smoothie bowls… the options are endless! Hope you are having a great week 🙂

  9. This looks amazing! I love a good power bowl, or any bowl! All the greens, grains, and veggies or a smoothie bowl. I was recently thinking maybe I should just throw out the plates and we should just use bowls! Haha!

  10. Yay for power bowls! <3 This looks so tasty + healthy! I haven't made one in a while, but I really should restart starting my days with those again! <3

    I'm super sad that I've been a Yelp elite since 2009 but still have yet to be able to make it to a single elite event. ;_; Sighhh.

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