Broccoli, Cauliflower, Celery Quinoa Bowl

Celery for fiber boost, dates for additional potassium (especially after a sweaty workout) and nuts for protein (plus good fats) - this Celery, Dates, and Nuts salad turned out a perfect component to a post-workout lunch salad bowl composed of steamed broccoli and cauliflower, leftover shredded chicken, hard-boiled egg, and quinoa.

For vegetarians, omit the chicken as the celery, dates and nuts component is delightfully tasty to glorify this steamed vegetables and quinoa grain bowl.

As with workout meals and grain bowls, I will list the main components of the meal, and not recipe with exact ingredient quantities. This is so that you can customize your meals - substitute the grains, vegetables, and proteins to your personal preferences; and especially for the vegetables - use what is freshest in your kitchen for the day. The vegetables are all totally interchangeable depending on what you have, so feel free to get creative.

Broccoli, Cauliflower, Celery Dates Salad Quinoa Bowl  
[Vegetables]: Ginger-garlic steamed broccoli and cauliflower plus a side-salad made with celery, dates and nuts
[Whole grains]: Tricolor quinoa, cooked according to package instructions
[Protein]: Shredded chicken plus hard-boiled egg (vegetarian: omit the chicken)

Directions: Assemble as shown. Garnish with red onions, and drizzle with easy homemade golden dressing.

[Meal preparation tips]: Components such as quinoa has been pre-cooked in a batch (2-3 days' supply), hard-boiled eggs prepared in advanced (5 days' supply) and chicken are leftovers. Excluding the egg, the quinoa and chicken can be warmed up/re-heated before consumption on the actual day.  The celery salad and dressing can also be made a few hours in advance.

Here is one rule I follow strictly when it comes to vegetables especially leafy greens. I NEVER prepare and cook the vegetables days in advance, in order to reap the maximum nutrition out of freshly cooked vegetable. They are usually cooked (leafy greens steamed, denser starchier vegetables roasted) just before the salad bowl is put together. If the vegetables are to be consumed raw like the celery salad, preparing one day ahead is fine.

That said, it is your grain bowl and you are eating it. Either it is everything made fresh, partial or entirely prepped-ahead, it is what works for you, right?

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