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Sesame Sriracha Buddha Bowls with Black Rice, Baked Tofu, and Massaged Kale

Forbidden Rice Buddha Bowls with Massaged Sesame Kale, Tofu, and Spicy Sriracha Vinaigrette

This recipe was created in partnership with McCormick Gourmet™, whose products spice up our own kitchen on a daily basis. Thanks for supporting us and the brands we love!

What is a Buddha bowl, exactly? To put it simply: it’s a big bowl of zen.

The Buddha bowl seems to be taking the internet by storm, and this is one trend I can get behind (unlike other Pinterest-born fads like the smoothie bowl or overnight oats, which, try as I might, I can’t quite force myself to like). Buddha bowls, on the other hand, are totally something I’d eat on a regular basis, trendy or not.

One defining characteristic of the Buddha bowl is the protein power: vegetarian or otherwise, it has to be full of it. Don’t be fooled, this is not some skimpy salad that will leave you hungry a few hours later. Piled high with tofu, edamame, and black rice, there’s well over 20 grams of protein per bowl, enough to leave your hunger (and palate) more than satisfied. It’s a treat for your body and for your tastebuds.

Sesame Sriracha Buddha Bowls with Black Rice and Massaged Kale - a healthy and protein-rich meal

In this case, a base of protein-rich black rice is piled high with baked tofu and edamame and topped with cucumber, avocado, and a chopped kale salad that’s been massaged with toasted sesame oil and sea salt until it’s tender and sweet and anything but bitter. The act of massaging the kale isn’t arbitrary; rather it tenderizes the kale, breaking down the tough cellulose and removing the often bitter flavor that is associated with raw kale. The addition of the sesame oil and sea salt helps this process along, infusing the kale with a lovely toasted sesame flavor.

Sesame Sriracha Buddha Bowls featuring McCormick Gourmet Spices

For the finishing touch, we whipped up a spicy dressing made with McCormick Gourmet’s new sriracha seasoning blend (which is quite possibly my new favorite thing, perfect for situations where you want a punch of spicy sriracha flavor but need the versatility of a dry spice blend.)

Protein-rich Buddha Bowls with Black Rice, Kale, Tofu, and Sesame Sriracha Vinaigrette

The first time we tested these bowls they pretty much bowled me over (har har). I guess I wasn’t expecting such a healthy combination of ingredients to taste so good (I’m not ashamed to admit I surprised even myself this time). We barely changed anything the second and third times we made it, just adjusting the proportions of ingredients so each and every bite is a perfectly balanced and flavorful.

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