As the leaves turn and the air crisps, our palates yearn for flavors that echo the season. Enter the Sweetgreen Harvest Bowl, a symphony of autumnal tastes and textures. It’s a dish that speaks of cozy sweaters and amber-hued forests, a perfect blend of hearty and healthy. Imagine sweet potatoes roasted to perfection, their edges caramelized, nestled alongside tender, juicy chicken.
But there’s more to this bowl than meets the eye. Each bite is a revelation of contrasts: the earthy kale and crisp romaine, the creamy goat cheese melting against the warm grains. It’s a meal that’s both comforting and invigorating, ideal for those brisk fall days. And the best part? It’s surprisingly simple to whip up. So, why not take a culinary adventure into the heart of autumn? Discover the full recipe below and let your taste buds revel in the season’s bounty.
What You’ll Need for This Recipe
Gather your ingredients, folks! It’s time to bring the essence of autumn to your kitchen with these simple yet flavorful components.
Wild Rice or 7-Grain Multigrain: The base of our bowl. It’s not just any grain; it’s a choice between the nutty, chewy wild rice or a hearty 7-grain mix. Each grain brings its own unique texture and a subtle, earthy flavor that anchors the dish.
Kosher Salt: A pinch here, a sprinkle there. Kosher salt is our go-to for seasoning. It’s coarser than table salt, allowing for a more controlled seasoning process. It’s about enhancing, not overpowering.
Apples: The sweet crunch! Choose a crisp variety like Honeycrisp or Fuji. They add a fresh, juicy sweetness that contrasts beautifully with the savory elements. It’s like a little surprise in every bite.
Sweet Potatoes: Oh, the humble sweet potato. Roasted until they’re tender and slightly caramelized. They bring a comforting sweetness and a gorgeous pop of color. It’s autumn on a plate.
Neutral Oil: Our unsung hero. A good quality neutral oil, like canola or vegetable, is key for roasting and cooking. It’s all about letting the natural flavors of our ingredients shine.
Black Pepper: Just a dash. It’s the subtle warmth that ties everything together. Freshly ground, if you can. It makes all the difference.
Romaine Lettuce and Kale: The green duo. Romaine for its crispness, kale for its heartiness. Together, they form a leafy, nutritious bed for our other ingredients.
Chèvre Goat Cheese: Creamy and tangy. It adds a luxurious richness that balances the earthy grains and vegetables. It’s like a dollop of comfort.
Roasted, Chopped Almonds (Optional): For the crunch lovers. They add a delightful texture and a nutty flavor that complements the other ingredients beautifully.
Chicken Breast: The protein powerhouse. Seasoned and cooked to perfection, it’s tender, juicy, and oh-so-satisfying.
Lemon Zest and Juice: A zing of citrus! It brightens up the chicken and adds a refreshing note to the overall dish.
Garlic Powder: For that subtle, aromatic kick. It’s all about layering flavors, and garlic powder does just that.
Balsamic Vinegar, Honey, Dijon Mustard, Extra Virgin Olive Oil: The dream team for our dressing. They come together to create a dressing that’s tangy, sweet, and utterly moreish.
Now, with these ingredients at hand, you’re all set to create a bowl that’s not just a meal, but an experience. Let’s get cooking!
How to Make Sweetgreen Harvest Bowl
Ready to create some culinary magic? Let’s dive into the steps to bring this autumnal delight, the Sweetgreen Harvest Bowl, to life.
Start with the Grains: Begin by cooking your choice of wild rice or a 7-grain multigrain mix. Follow the package instructions for perfect results. Remember, patience is key here; let those grains absorb all the water and flavors.
Oven Time for Sweet Potatoes: Preheat your oven to a toasty 425°F. Peel and slice those sweet potatoes into half moons. Toss them with a drizzle of neutral oil, a sprinkle of kosher salt, and a dash of black pepper. Roast them for about 20 minutes. You’re aiming for soft, slightly caramelized edges.
Chop Chop for the Greens: While the potatoes are roasting, get chopping. Romaine lettuce and kale, your time has come. Chop them into bite-sized pieces, thinking about the perfect forkful with each cut.
Season and Cook the Chicken: Butterfly your chicken breasts for even cooking. Season them with a mix of kosher salt, neutral oil, black pepper, lemon juice, zest, and garlic powder. Cook them in a pan over medium-high heat. Aim for about 3-4 minutes each side. You’re looking for a golden exterior and a juicy interior.
Dressing Time: In a bowl, whisk together lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, honey, dijon mustard, a pinch of salt, black pepper, and a generous pour of extra virgin olive oil. Taste and adjust. This dressing should sing with flavors.
Assemble the Bowl: Now, the fun part. In a large bowl, lay down your greens. Add the cooked grains, roasted sweet potatoes, and chopped chicken. Sprinkle in the goat cheese and almonds if you’re using them. It’s all about layers and textures.
The Final Drizzle: Pour your homemade dressing over the top. Give everything a good, gentle toss. Make sure each ingredient gets a bit of that dressing love.
Taste and Serve: Finally, taste your creation. Adjust seasoning if needed. Then, serve up this bowl of autumn goodness. It’s not just a meal; it’s a celebration of the season.
What We Love About This Recipe
There’s so much to adore about this Sweetgreen Harvest Bowl, where do I even start? First off, it’s the epitome of autumn in a bowl. Each ingredient is a nod to the season’s bounty. The roasted sweet potatoes, for instance, are like little jewels of fall. They bring a natural sweetness that’s both comforting and delightful.
Then, there’s the contrast of textures and flavors. It’s a dance of creamy, crunchy, savory, and sweet. The crispness of the apples against the creamy goat cheese is a match made in heaven. And let’s not forget the heartiness of the grains, whether it’s wild rice or a 7-grain mix. They add a satisfying chew and a depth of flavor that’s just unparalleled.
The versatility of this recipe is another win. It’s perfect for meal prep, adaptable to dietary preferences, and open to substitutions. Want to switch up the greens or add a different protein? Go for it! This bowl is forgiving and flexible. Similarly, the Jimmy Buffett Pasta Salad offers a delightful twist with its unique blend of flavors and ingredients, making it another versatile dish to try.
And, of course, the homemade dressing. It’s the cherry on top. The balsamic vinaigrette, with its tangy-sweet harmony, ties everything together beautifully. It’s a simple whisk-together affair, yet it elevates the dish to a whole new level.
Recipe Variations for Sweetgreen Harvest Bowl
Who says you can’t play with your food? Let’s mix things up with some fun and tasty variations to this already fabulous Sweetgreen Harvest Bowl.
Grain Game Changer: Swap out wild rice for quinoa or farro. Each brings its own unique texture and nuttiness. Quinoa adds a protein punch, while farro offers a delightful chewiness.
Go Vegan: Easily make this bowl vegan. Skip the chicken and goat cheese. Add chickpeas or tofu for your protein fix. For the cheese, a sprinkle of nutritional yeast or vegan feta can do wonders.
Roasted Root Veggie Twist: Instead of sweet potatoes, try roasted beets or carrots. They’ll add a different kind of sweetness and a vibrant color pop. It’s all about keeping it fresh and seasonal.
Nutty Notes: Almonds not your thing? Try walnuts or pecans. They’ll add a lovely crunch and a slightly different nutty flavor. It’s the little changes that keep it exciting.
Dressing Swap: If balsamic isn’t your vibe, go for a honey mustard or a lemon tahini dressing. Each dressing can completely transform the flavor profile. It’s like a new dish every time.
Spice It Up: Add a sprinkle of chili flakes or cumin to your chicken seasoning. A little heat or earthiness can elevate the dish to a whole new level.
Cheese Varieties: Experiment with different cheeses. Feta or blue cheese can add a tangy twist. It’s all about finding that perfect cheesy match.
Greens Galore: Swap out romaine and kale for spinach or arugula. Each green brings its own unique flavor and texture. It’s a simple switch that can make a big difference.
Pairing and Serving Suggestions for Sweetgreen Harvest Bowl
Let’s elevate this dish to the next level! Here are some pairing and serving suggestions to make your Sweetgreen Harvest Bowl an unforgettable meal.
Crusty Bread on the Side: Imagine a slice of warm, crusty bread to scoop up every last bit. It’s the perfect companion for soaking up the dressing and combining flavors.
Wine Pairing: A crisp white wine, like a Sauvignon Blanc or a light Chardonnay, complements this dish beautifully. The acidity and fruitiness of the wine balance the hearty and savory flavors of the bowl.
Soup Starter: Start with a light, seasonal soup. Think butternut squash or a simple vegetable broth. It’s a warm-up act that sets the stage for the main show.
Fresh Fruit Finish: End on a sweet note with a fruit salad. Mix in seasonal fruits for a refreshing and light dessert. It’s a palate cleanser that rounds off the meal perfectly.
Herbal Tea Harmony: Pair with a cup of herbal tea. Chamomile or mint tea can be a soothing end to this nourishing meal. It’s about comfort, from start to finish.
Savory Snack Pairing: Consider serving with a side of roasted nuts or olives. They add an extra layer of flavor and texture, making the meal even more satisfying.
For the Kids: Make it kid-friendly with some fun additions. Add some sweet corn or make mini versions of the bowl. It’s all about making it appealing to the little ones.
Lunch Next Day: This bowl is also great as a next-day lunch. Pack up the leftovers; they taste even better as the flavors meld overnight. It’s a meal prep dream!
FAQ – Sweetgreen Harvest Bowl
Absolutely! Quinoa, brown rice, or even couscous can be great substitutes. Each brings its own unique flavor and texture to the bowl.
Yes, it’s perfect for meal prep! The flavors meld beautifully overnight, making it even more delicious the next day. Just store the components separately for the best results.
Easy peasy! Skip the chicken and use chickpeas or tofu instead. For the cheese, opt for a vegan alternative or simply omit it.
If you’ve stored the components separately, reheat the grains and chicken gently in the microwave or on the stovetop. The greens and dressing are best added fresh.
I wouldn’t recommend freezing the entire assembled bowl. However, you can freeze the cooked grains and chicken. Just thaw and reheat when you’re ready to enjoy.
A lemon tahini dressing or a simple olive oil and vinegar mix can be great alternatives. Feel free to experiment with flavors you love!
It can be! Try making mini versions of the bowl or adding ingredients your kids love, like sweet corn or shredded cheese.
Of course! Roasted Brussels sprouts, carrots, or beets can add extra nutrition and flavor. It’s all about making it your own.