This protein bowl is FULL of flavor and perfect for a quick lunch. You’ll find yourself eating it again and again. It lends itself to some creativity, allowing you to use up what you have on hand. It’s gluten free, takes about 3 minute to make, and is a tasty way to get extra vegetables and protein in at lunch.
This post was created in partnership with Hy-Vee (Columbia).
Looking for a quick and nutritious lunch option?
As moms, our lunch doesn’t have to consist of leftover sandwich triangles from our kids’ plates and a rogue baby carrot or two we find left in the vegetable drawer.
With a few simple ingredients in the pantry and fridge, you can whip up a vegetarian Protein Bowl that will keep you full and give you energy for the afternoon ahead (and maybe even help you fend off the mid-afternoon snack craving!).
What’s in This Protein Bowl?
The ingredients are incredibly fresh, simple, and healthy. Here’s what you’ll need:
- Black beans – A great source of protein and fiber.
- Bell pepper – Veggies! Any color works but I prefer orange or red because they are a little sweeter.
- Cherry tomatoes – More veggies! If you don’t like tomatoes, use more bell peppers or maybe a little red onion.
- Avocado – A little more protein and some good-for-you fat. Make sure it’s ripe. When you press the outside, it should give slightly.
- Feta cheese, crumbled – More protein and some calcium. Goat cheese would work, too.
- Lemon – Adds a little acidity.
- Salt, pepper, and garlic powder, to taste
Where to Get Your Ingredients
We suggest grabbing all your ingredients at your local Hy-Vee grocery store or using their Aisles Online to have your groceries delivered or prepared for pick up. They are always well-stocked and offer the best meat and produce around.
To make things easy for you, we’ve already started a custom shopping cart with the Protein Lunch Bowl ingredients to save you time…
What Makes Protein Lunch Bowls So Easy?
We know our readers dig simple recipes. In fact, we have a wealth of recipes that only require 5 ingredients or less such as our Sheet Pan Sausage & Veggies, Stove Top Mac & Cheese, or our Honey Garlic Chicken Kabobs.
Protein Lunch Bowls just might be one of the easiest recipes on our site, though. Reason is, you simply add the fresh ingredients to a bowl, drizzle it with some lemon juice and a touch of seasoning and mix it all together.
When you stir it together, the avocado adds (healthy) fat needed for richness, the feta brings some saltiness and creaminess, lemon juice lends a little acidity to brighten things up, and the peppers give some crunch. This simple bowl is shockingly good!
Variations to the Protein Bowl
There are lots of ways to mix up this recipe based on what you have on hand and ways to add in even more protein. Here are some ideas.
- Add diced cooked chicken. Rotisserie chicken makes this easy.
- Add chickpeas, a great source of vegetarian protein.
- Fresh edamame would be delicious and add more protein, too.
- Use goat cheese instead of feta. Yum!
- Toss in a little Cilantro Lime Rice or Instant Pot Brown Rice.
- Add in some corn.
- Add some freshly diced red onion. Not too much though!
- Add some cooked whole wheat couscous or quinoa.
- Spoon it inside Whole Wheat Pita Bread.
More Vegetarian Recipes You’ll LovePrint
This protein bowl is FULL of flavor and perfect for a quick lunch. You’ll find yourself eating it again and again. It lends itself to some creativity, allowing you to use up what you have on hand.
- 1/2 cup cooked black beans (drained and rinsed)
- 1/4 cup chopped bell pepper
- 1/4 cup chopped cherry tomatoes (sub: more diced peppers or a little red onion)
- 1/2 ripe avocado, chopped
- 2 tablespoons crumbled feta cheese (sub: goat cheese)
- Juice from 1/2 a lemon
- Salt, pepper, and garlic powder, to taste
- Combine black beans, bell pepper, tomatoes, avocado, and feta cheese in a dinner-sized bowl. Squeeze fresh lemon juice over the top and sprinkle on salt, pepper and garlic powder to taste. Stir, taste, and season as needed.
- Eat cold or warm up for about 30-45 seconds in the microwave and stir. Serve with multigrain crackers or pita chips on the side, if you’d like. Or stir in some couscous, quinoa, or rice.
Dairy-Free Version: Replace the cheese with more avocado.
Don’t forget to grab all your ingredients at your local Hy-Vee grocery store or using their Aisles Online to have your groceries delivered or prepared for pick up. To make things easy for you, we’ve already started a custom shopping cart with the Protein Bowl ingredients to save you time…