Make it easy to feed a mixed group of eaters with these Buddha Bowls with Pineapple Brown Butter Teriyaki Sauce. We’re going buffet style for these Buddha Bowls so everyone can customize to their own diets. The luscious Pineapple Brown Butter Teriyaki sauce is the uniting force for the bowls, and you can easily make it vegan or vegetarian, or both. The sauce pairs well with all sorts of proteins. For vegans or vegetarians, Salty Crispy Tofu makes a great option. Quick-cooking prawns and roasted chicken round out the protein selections for pescatarians and carnivores. Choose your favourite noodle or starch, anything from brown rice to glass noodles will be awesome. Finally, set out some fruits and vegetables. For the veggies, think crunchy and raw: slices of cucumber, zucchini spirals, fresh cherry tomatoes, raw carrots. Contrast that with juicy mangos and acidic pineapple and your tastebuds will be in nirvana. You can save assembly and serving time by combing the fruits and vegetables into a big bowl.
TL;DR Making Buddha Bowls
Making Buddha Bowls
This isn’t a difficult recipe but you’ll want to do a little planning. Depending on your choice of noodles/starch and proteins, the order you prepare the Buddha Bowls will a little bit different.
Make the Pineapple Brown Butter Teriyaki Sauce
You’ll start by making the Pineapple Brown Butter Teriyaki Sauce. You can make this 2 or 3 days ahead of time. The recipe makes over 2 cups of sauce, but you can enjoy the leftovers with other proteins or vegetables such as yams or sweet potatoes.
Pick a Noodle/Starch
Next, consider the noodle or starch that will be the foundation of your Buddha Bowls. Since the sauce is so flavourful, we recommend something fairly neutral, think white or brown rice, glass noodles or rice noodles. These each have a different prep time so you’ll want to plan according. Brown rice will take the longest, but you could cook it ahead of time and reheat.
Pick a Protein: Tofu, Prawns, or Chicken
Salty Crispy Tofu is our go-to for these Buddha Bowls, but you can use any tofu recipe you like, again pick something fairly neutral to let the sauce shine through. If you’re making Salty Crispy Tofu, you can prep the tofu up to the stage where you have the tofu cubes rolled in cornstarch. You can leave them like that about an hour before shallow-frying.
If there are pescatarians in your group, or you’re just feeling seafood-ish, prawns make an excellent choice for these Buddha Bowls. They cook really quickly, so you can leave them until last.
Finally, for the omnivores in the crowd, you can’t go wrong with roasted chicken. You can use leftover cooked chicken, or pick up a roasted chicken from the grocery store to save yourself some time.
Prepare the Fruits and Vegetables
This Buddha Bowl is all about raw fruits and vegetables that pair well with the sweet and savoury sauce. For the veggies, go for contrasting colours and textures: slices of cucumber, zucchini spirals, fresh cherry tomatoes, raw carrots. For fruit: mangos are bright, juicy and sweet, while acidic pineapple echos the pineapple juice in the Pineapple Brown Butter Teriyaki Sauce. Super yum!
To save prep time, purchase pre-cut vegetables and canned pineapple.
You can set all your fruits and vegetables out in separate serving bowls if you like, to provide a truly customized eating experience. Or save assembly and serving time by combining them all into a big salad bowl.
Tips for Groups of People With Mixed Diets
These Buddha Bowls are perfect for a mixed crowd, with Salty Crispy Tofu for the vegans or vegetarians, prawns for pescatarians, and chicken for the carnivores. The Pineapple Brown Butter Teriyaki Sauce is the uniting force for this meal. You can make it either vegan or vegetarian as the brown butter is added at the end of the sauce making. And yes, we have a vegan version of brown butter. If you’re making both versions of the sauce, it’s a good idea to put it different coloured vessels so your dinners can easily tell which is which.
Here are some other ideas for mixed groups:
Buddha Bowls with Pineapple Brown Butter Teriyaki Sauce
- 12 tablespons Pineapple Brown Butter Teriyaki Sauce (see Instruction section for link to recipe)
For the proteins:
- Salty Crispy Tofu (4-6 cubes per person, see Instruction section for link to recipe)
- Cooked Chicken (about 1/4 pound per person)
- Prawns (4-6 prawns per person)
- small amount of oil, vegan brown butter or brown butter for cooking prawns (See instruction section for links to vegan brown butter and brown butter recipes)
For the noodle/starch
- brown or white rice 3/4 cup per person
- glass or vermicelli noodles 3/4 cup per person
For the vegetables
- 1.5 cups cucumber or raw zucchini, chopped or spiralized
- 1.5 cups cherry tomatoes
- 1.5 cups raw carrots, shredded
- 1.5 cups mango, chopped
- 1.5 cups pineapple, chopped
These instructions are quite loose as there is a lot of flexibility to this recipe. None of the steps are difficult but especially if you are making 3 different proteins, consider the order of your steps. You can purchase or prepare the chicken ahead of time. The Salty Crispy Tofu takes a bit of passive preparation time, but you can prepare it up to the point where the tofu cubes are rolled in cornstarch. Prawns cook very quickly, so you leave them to last. Don't forget to defrost them if you are using frozen.
- Prepare the Pineapple Brown Butter Teriyaki Sauce. You can do this several days ahead and reheat it.
- Prepare the vegetables.
- Put out everything in serving bowls, buffet style and let your eaters prepare their own customized Buddha Bowl.