Work-Week Lunch: Kale & Chickpea Rice Bowl

Chickpea and Kale Rice Bowl

As I mentioned in my post late last week, I’m doing a lot of Bikram yoga these days. To meet the physical demands of my practice, I have seriously upped my protein game.

My former go-to lunch during the week was something filling but ultimately light — like a big leafy salad or bowl of vegetable soup. That doesn’t really cut it for me these days. Those things have a time and a place, of course; they’re just not the kind of meal that can give me everything I need before a workout.

This kale and chickpea rice bowl is one of my new favorite meals. It’s not so different from my other veggie-based bowls — it just has a bit more nutritional heft. First of all, there is a ton of protein for meatless dish : 11 grams per serving. If you want to boost that stat even higher, have a hard boiled egg on the side for an extra 6 grams. There are lots of other happy nutritional moments happening in this bowl too: one serving has 132% of your vitamin A for the day, and 119% of your vitamin C.

Frozen kale and canned chickpeas make for easy prep. Toss everything in the pan with a little olive oil and you’re on your way. From start to finish, this dish takes maybe 30 minutes to prepare (and most of that time is spent waiting for the rice to cook). It keeps well in the fridge too, so you’ll have no trouble riding this meal out for a few days. Love it.

Recipe after the jump!

Chickpea and kale rice bowl

Kale & Chickpea Rice Bowl
Serves 5
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  1. 1 1/4 cup uncooked brown rice
  2. 1 tablespoon olive oil
  3. 3-4 cloves garlic, minced
  4. 1 small onion, sliced
  5. 1 red bell pepper, seeded and sliced
  6. 1 16-oz bag frozen chopped kale, thawed
  7. 1 15.5-oz can low sodium chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  8. 1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce
  9. 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  10. red pepper flakes or sriracha, to taste
  1. Start by preparing the brown rice according to the package instructions. While the rice is cooking, prepare the kale and chickpeas.
  2. Place the olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. When the oil is shimmering, add the garlic, onions, and bell pepper. Once the onions and bell pepper have begun to soften, pour in the thawed kale and drained chickpeas. Toss well and cover to allow the kale to heat through -- about 4 to 6 minutes.
  3. Add the soy sauce and rice vinegar. Season with red pepper flakes or sriracha if desired. Adjust seasonings to taste. Serve warm, over rice.
  1. Per 1 cup kale mixture + 3/4 cup rice
  2. Calories: 319 | Total Fat: 5.5g | Saturated Fat: 0.7g | Trans Fat: 0.0g | Cholesterol: 0mg | Sodium: 630mg | Total Carbohydrates: 58.3g | Dietary Fiber: 8.0g | Sugars: 1.6g | Protein: 11.0g
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  1. Thanks Kamille! Made this for a friend last night, definitely a winner.

    I added thinly sliced tofu and carrot.

    • You’re so welcome! I’m glad it went over well. How did you prep the tofu, just a quick saute with everything else?

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