The right sauce for a Buddha bowl can take an ordinary meal and make it extraordinary!
Whether you’re a fan of the sweet and tangy flavors of Asian cuisine, or rich and creamy Mediterranean sauces, this list has 10 sauces that are perfect for your Buddha bowls.
From balsamic vinaigrette to spicy peanut sauce, each one will make all your favorite veggies more interesting.
With these Buddha bowl sauces on hand, you won’t be reaching for the takeout menu any time soon.
So let’s get cooking—your taste buds await!
What Are Buddha Bowls?
Buddha bowls, also known as macro bowls or hippie bowls, are a type of meal that is made up of various plant-based ingredients.
They typically include a grain such as quinoa or brown rice, vegetables like roasted sweet potatoes and broccoli, legumes such as chickpeas and lentils, nuts and seeds for crunchiness, and a flavorful sauce to tie it all together.
Buddha bowls can be served hot or cold depending on the ingredients used.
Buddha bowls are popular because they provide an easy way to get in plenty of nutrients without having to spend too much time cooking.
The combination of grains, vegetables, legumes and healthy fats makes them incredibly nutritious meals that can help you meet your daily nutrient needs.
Additionally, they’re highly customizable so you can make them with whatever ingredients you have on hand.
10 Tasty Sauces for Buddha Bowls
Buddha bowls are great for adding interesting flavors and textures to your meals.
The key is finding the right sauces that will best compliment the ingredients in your bowl.
Here are ten tasty sauces you can use to give your Buddha Bowls a flavorful kick:
- Ingredients You’ll Need: To make a balsamic vinaigrette for your Buddha bowl, you will need honey, dijon mustard, fine sea salt, freshly ground black pepper, a large garlic clove (minced), balsamic vinegar and extra virgin olive oil.
- To Make It: In a medium bowl or jar with lid, add the honey, dijon mustard, salt and pepper. Whisk together until combined. Add the minced garlic and whisk again until combined. Pour in the balsamic vinegar and whisk until combined. Slowly pour in the olive oil while whisking constantly to emulsify the dressing. Taste and adjust seasoning as desired. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
- Serving Tips: Drizzle over your favorite Buddha bowl ingredients such as quinoa or brown rice; roasted vegetables; cooked legumes like chickpeas or lentils; nuts or seeds; fresh greens like spinach or kale; avocado slices; tomatoes; cucumbers; carrots; sprouts etc.. This dressing is also great on salads!
2. Creamy Vegan Buddha Bowl Dressing
- Ingredients You’ll Need: For this creamy vegan Buddha bowl dressing, you will need tahini paste, lemon juice, maple syrup, sesame oil, salt and water.
- To Make It: To make the dressing start by combining all of the ingredients in a small bowl or jar. Whisk together until everything is well combined. If it’s too thick add more water 1 tablespoon at a time until desired consistency is reached. Taste and adjust seasonings if needed.
- Serving Tips: This creamy vegan Buddha bowl dressing can be used to dress up your favorite salads or as a dip for vegetables like carrots or cucumbers. It also pairs nicely with roasted vegetables such as Brussels sprouts or cauliflower. The possibilities are endless! Enjoy!
Ingredients You’ll Need
- 1/2 cup of natural, unsweetened peanut butter
- 2 tablespoons of low sodium soy sauce (or tamari or coconut aminos for gluten-free)
- 1 tablespoon of rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons of brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons chili garlic sauce (more or less to taste)
- 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
- 3 garlic cloves (pressed or grated)
- 1 tablespoon ginger root (grated)
- 2-4 tablespoons warm water
How To Make It
- Begin by combining the peanut butter, soy sauce, rice vinegar and brown sugar in a small bowl.
- Whisk together until combined.
- Then add the chili garlic sauce and stir until incorporated.
- Add the lime juice and whisk again until all ingredients are well blended.
- Finally add the garlic and ginger root and mix until fully combined.
- Slowly add in the warm water one tablespoon at a time while stirring to thin out the mixture as needed.
The end result should be a thick yet pourable consistency that coats your spoon when lifted from the bowl.
This spicy peanut sauce is perfect for adding flavor to any Buddha bowl!
Simply drizzle it over cooked vegetables such as broccoli or carrots before serving with grains like quinoa or wild rice along with some grilled tofu or tempeh for added protein.
Alternatively use it as an alternative dressing on salads or even sandwiches!
- Ingredients You’ll Need: To make a creamy avocado crema for your Buddha bowl, you will need two avocados, peeled and pitted, 1/4 cup cilantro (optional), 1/2 cup sour cream, 1/2 teaspoon coarse kosher salt plus more to taste, one and a half limes juiced (about 3 tablespoons) and one clove of garlic.
- To Make It: Begin by placing the peeled and pitted avocados in a food processor or blender. Add the cilantro, sour cream, salt and lime juice. Blend until smooth. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed. Finally add the garlic clove and blend until combined.
- Serving Tips: This delicious sauce can be used as an accompaniment to any Buddha bowl creation! Drizzle it over cooked grains such as quinoa or brown rice along with roasted vegetables or sautéed greens for added flavor. It can also be served as a dip alongside cruditées such as carrots or cucumbers for an extra special treat!
5. Cashew Cream
- Ingredients You’ll Need: To make cashew cream, you will need 1 cup raw cashews*, ½ cup water, 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 2 tablespoons lemon juice, 1 garlic clove (peeled), and ½ teaspoon sea salt.
- To Make It: Place all ingredients in a high speed blender or food processor and blend until creamy. If the mixture is too thick, add more water one tablespoon at a time until desired consistency is reached.
- Serving Tips: Cashew cream can be used as a sauce for Buddha bowls or other vegan meals. It’s also great on roasted vegetables, salads, tacos and wraps. For added flavor try adding fresh herbs such as parsley or cilantro to the mix before blending. Cashew cream should be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
- Ingredients You’ll Need: To make pesto, you will need 2 cups of fresh basil leaves (can sub half with baby spinach), 1/2 cup freshly grated Romano or Parmesan cheese (about 2 ounces), 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil, 1/3 cup pine nuts (can sub chopped walnuts), 3 cloves garlic, minced (about 1 tablespoon), 1/4 teaspoon salt or more to taste, and 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper or more to taste.
- To Make It: Start by adding the basil leaves and pine nuts into a food processor. Pulse until everything is finely chopped. Next add in the garlic, salt and pepper and pulse again until combined. Then slowly pour in the olive oil while pulsing until it is all incorporated. Finally add in the Parmesan cheese and pulse one last time until everything is blended together. Taste for seasoning and adjust accordingly if needed.
- Serving Tips: Pesto can be used as a sauce for Buddha bowls, tossed with cooked pasta or potatoes, spread on sandwiches or toast points, stirred into soups for flavor depth, drizzled over roasted vegetables or grilled meats for added flavor dimension; basically pesto can be used anywhere you want an extra burst of flavor!
- Ingredients You’ll Need: To make a delicious and flavorful chimichurri sauce, you will need olive oil, red wine vinegar, parsley, garlic cloves, small red chilies (or 1 deseeded and finely chopped chili), dried oregano, coarse salt and pepper.
- To Make It: Begin by combining the olive oil and red wine vinegar in a bowl. Next add in the finely chopped parsley, garlic cloves (finely chopped or minced), small red chilies (or 1 deseeded and finely chopped chili), dried oregano, coarse salt and pepper to taste. Mix all of these ingredients together until they are thoroughly combined.
- Serving Tips: This sauce is great served over any type of Buddha bowl! It can also be used as a marinade for grilled meats or vegetables. For best results serve it at room temperature so that all of the flavors can shine through! Chimichurri can also be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to one week.
- Ingredients You’ll Need: To make this cilantro lime sauce, you will need 2 tablespoons of olive oil, ½ an avocado (peeled and pitted), ¼ cup of water, ½ cup chopped green onion, ¾ cup cilantro leaves, 2 cloves of garlic (diced), the juice of 1 lime, ½ teaspoon salt, and either ½ cup sour cream or greek yogurt.
- To Make It: Begin by adding the olive oil to a small saucepan over medium heat. Once heated add in the diced garlic and sauté for about 30 seconds until fragrant. Add in the green onion and cook for another minute or so until softened. Then add in the avocado and mash it into the pan with a fork or potato masher. Next stir in the cilantro leaves, water, lime juice and salt. Simmer on low heat for 5 minutes stirring occasionally to combine all ingredients together. Finally remove from heat and stir in either sour cream or greek yogurt until completely combined. Serve immediately or store covered up to 3 days in refrigerator.
- Serving Tips: This cilantro lime sauce is perfect as a topping on Buddha bowls! Try serving it over roasted vegetables like sweet potatoes & broccoli with cooked quinoa & black beans topped with fresh tomatoes & avocado slices! You can also use this sauce as a dip for tortilla chips or as a spread on sandwiches & wraps!
- Ingredients You’ll Need: To make a ginger miso dressing, you will need sesame oil, rice vinegar, carrots, sweet miso paste, and peanut oil.
- To Make It: Start by combining the sesame oil, rice vinegar, and carrots in a blender or food processor. Blend until smooth. Add the sweet miso paste and blend again until creamy. Finally add the peanut oil and blend until all ingredients are well incorporated.
- Serving Tips: This delicious dressing is perfect for adding to Buddha bowls as well as salads or veggie dishes. It can also be used as a dipping sauce for vegetables or tofu. If you want to add some heat to your dish try adding some chili flakes or sriracha!
Ingredients You’ll Need
- 1 tablespoon of coconut oil
- 2 tablespoons of curry powder
- 1 13.5 ounce can of coconut milk
- 2 teaspoons of ground turmeric
- 2 tablespoons of coconut aminos
- 1 tablespoon of fish sauce
- juice from half a lime
How To Make It
- Begin by heating the coconut oil in a medium pot over medium heat.
- Once the oil is hot enough to sizzle when you add it a drop or two of water, stir in the curry powder and toast for about 30 seconds until fragrant.
- Pour in the canned coconut milk and whisk together until fully combined with the curry powder.
- Add in the ground turmeric and stir together until fully blended into the sauce.
- Finally mix in both the coconut aminos and fish sauce along with half a lime’s worth of juice for added brightness and tanginess.
- Bring to a simmer then reduce heat to low-medium so that it bubbles gently but does not boil over or burn on bottom (stirring occasionally).
- Simmer for 5 minutes then remove from heat to cool slightly before serving or storing away for later use.
This 5-minute Coconut Curry Sauce is perfect served atop Buddha Bowls!
Simply prepare your favorite combination of grains (such as quinoa), vegetables (like roasted cauliflower or Brussels sprouts) as well as protein sources (chickpeas are great!) then drizzle generously with this creamy flavorful sauce!
Serve warm alongside some fresh cilantro leaves if desired for an extra zesty touch!
What are the 5 key components of a Buddha bowl?
The 5 essential components of a Buddha bowl are whole grains, veggies, a protein source, a dressing, and a topping such as nuts, seeds, herbs, or sprouts.
Together, these items create a balanced, nutritious meal.
- When building a Buddha bowl, start with a base of whole grains such as brown rice or quinoa.
- Then, add a variety of vegetables like roasted sweet potatoes, sautéed kale, and fresh cucumber slices.
- Top with a protein source such as tofu, tempeh, or cooked beans.
- Finish the bowl off with a flavorful dressing, such as tahini or a vinaigrette, and sprinkle on some of your favorite toppings like nuts, seeds, herbs, or sprouts.
Are Buddha bowls good for weight loss?
Yes, Buddha bowls can be a good option for weight loss, as they are typically made up of nutrient-dense, low-calorie ingredients such as vegetables, whole grains, and proteins.
Buddha bowls also offer a balanced combination of macronutrients and are usually lower in calories than other meals.
Eating a Buddha bowl can help provide adequate nutrition while keeping calorie intake in check, thus aiding in weight loss.
Additionally, Buddha bowls are often customizable, allowing you to tailor them to your individual dietary needs, such as reducing sodium, fat, and sugar intake.
When combined with regular physical activity and healthy lifestyle choices, Buddha bowls can be an effective tool for achieving and maintaining a healthy weight.
In conclusion, Buddha bowls are a great way to enjoy a variety of flavors and textures in one meal.
To make them even more delicious, there are a variety of sauces that can be used to bring out the flavor of the ingredients.
The best sauces for Buddha bowls are balsamic vinaigrette, tahini dressing, spicy peanut sauce, avocado cream sauce, cashew cream sauce, pesto, chimichurri, cilantro lime sauce, miso ginger sauce, and Thai coconut curry sauce.
Each of these sauces adds a different flavor and texture to the dish, making it even more enjoyable and nutritious.
So, the next time you’re looking for a flavorful and healthy meal, don’t forget to add some delicious sauces to your Buddha bowl.
10 Tasty Sauces for Buddha Bowls
- Balsamic Vinaigrette
- Creamy Vegan Buddha Bowl Dressing
- Spicy Peanut Sauce
- Creamy Avocado Crema
- Cashew Cream
- Cilantro Lime Sauce
- Ginger Miso Dressing
- 5-Minute Coconut Curry Sauce
- Select your favorite recipe.
- Organize all the required ingredients.
- Prep a sauce recipe in 20 minutes or less!
Jenny has always been passionate about cooking, and she uses her platform to share her joy of food with others. Her recipes are easy to follow, and she loves giving tips and tricks to help others create their own unique culinary creations.