Roasted Cauliflower Farro Bowls

This roasted cauliflower farro bowl recipe makes 2 large or 3 medium bowls that are perfect for lunch.

Cooking farro

Farro is a whole grain that cooks like rice or quinoa. I find that even using the ratios recommended on the package, I always have to drain excess water once it is cooked. For this recipe, you will cook the farro and prepare the bowl, then reheat slightly before serving. If you can’t find farro at your local grocery store, you can use quinoa instead. I usually find farro at Bulk Barn. The texture is a bit chewy, unlike a fluffy rice or quinoa.

Roasting cauliflower

Roasting the cauliflower adds a nice toasty flavor to your bowl. Simply cut it into florets, drizzle with olive oil and seasonings and roast at 425 F. for about 20 minutes. When I make this bowl, I usually alternate the seasonings from week to week. My favorite are lemon pepper and Jay’s Spice.

If you don’t want to use cauliflower, try broccoli or sweet potato.

Dressing the bowl

I like to use simple dressings for lunch bowls, so that I can assemble them quickly. This bowl uses a squeeze of half of a lemon, a drizzle of olive oil and a dollop of tahini. I assemble the bowls with the farro, cauliflower and dressing so that I can warm it up before eating. This allows the tahini to melt in to the bowl and create a creamy sauce. Then I prep some additional toppings to add just before serving.

Additional toppings

There is one topping that requires a little more effort, but is well worth it, and it’s crispy breadcrumbs. I was inspired to try this after having the Roasted Broccoli and Farro salad at Juneberry. The breadcrumbs add a pleasing crisp to the bowl. Simply melt some butter in a skillet, add the breadcrumbs and a pinch of garlic powder, and stir until the breadcrumbs are toasted. As for other toppings, I like fresh parsely, crumbled feta and salted pumpkin or sunflower seeds.

Serving this bowl

As I mentioned previously, I like to serve this bowl warm (not hot), then add in the feta, seeds, breadcrumbs and parsley just before serving. This achieves a combination of textures and fresh and warm flavors.

This bamboo utensil kit is from Zero Waste MVMT. I keep it in my lunch kit and wash with soap and water when I’m finished eating. Use my code TBL10, to get 10% off your order.

Roasted Cauliflower & Farro Bowls

This is a hearty lunch that can be prepped ahead of time and assembled right before eating.

Course Main Course, Salad
Keyword cauliflower, farro, feta, lemon, roasted cauliflower, tahini
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 2

Ingredients

  • 1 cup farro, uncooked
  • 1/2 head cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp lemon pepper seasoning
  • 1/2 cup feta cheese, divided
  • 1/2 cup salted sunflower or pumpkin seeds, divided
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley, divided

Crispy breadcrumbs

  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder

Dressing

  • 2 lemons
  • 1/2 cups olive oil, divided
  • 4 Tbsp tahihi, divided

Instructions

  1. Cook farro according to package directions. Make sure to drain out excess water.

  2. While the farro is cooking, preheat the oven to 425F.

  3. Chop cauliflower, drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with lemon pepper and spread out on a sheet pan.

  4. Roast caulflower for 20 minutes.

  5. Split farro into two lunch-sized containers.

  6. Place cooked cauliflower on top of the farro.

  7. Add fresh parsley.

  8. Squeeze one lemon over each portion and add 1/4 cup oil and 2 Tbsp tahini to each portion as well.

Crispy breadcrumbs

  1. Melt 2 Tbsp butter in skillet and add the breadcrumbs and garlic powder.

  2. Toss until breadcrumbs are toasted and crispy.

  3. Set aside to cool.

  4. Once cooled, divide into to small containers or jars.

Toppings

  1. Fill four small jars or containers with crumbled feta and seeds.

  2. To assemble the salad, warm the farro and cauliflower bowls for 2 minutes in the microwave.

  3. Shake to spread the dressing around, then add feta, seeds and breadcrubms.

Recipe Notes

This recipe can also be made with quinoa instead of farro.

You can also use roasted sweet potato or broccoli instead of cauliflower. 

Carrot Oat Mini-Muffins

These carrot oat mini-muffins are the perfect after-school snack or lunch box addition.

Key ingredients

Whenever I develop muffin recipes, I always try to make sure they include bananas or applesauce. Why? Who doesn’t have a ton of bananas in their freezer? Also, we always have a ton of homemade unsweetened applesauce on hand that we make with apples from our friend’s tree. Applesauce is also a more economical choice and a pantry/freezer ingredient, versus using butter, so I like that too!

Food waste tip: Make your own applesauce from bruised apples

Did you know that you can make your own applesauce? Drop chopped skin-on apples in your slow cooker with 1/2 cup of water. Cook it on low for about 6 hours, puree and freeze!

I also like to use whole wheat flour and oats in my muffin recipes because I know my kids will take them for snack, lunch, or even breakfast sometimes, and I want them to be filling and satiating so the kids aren’t asking for another snack right after they have one.

We always have carrots in the fridge, so it’s an easy ingredient to include.

These Oatmeal Applesauce Muffins with Salted Caramel Chips also contain whole wheat flour, oats and applesauce. A few other muffins on my regular roster are these Chocolate Zucchini Muffins these Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins. Both contain bananas!

Meal prep tip: Shred carrots while you chop carrots for another meal or snack

One of my favorite meal prep tips is to touch ingredients once for all uses. That means, shred the carrots for the muffins and bake them while you chop carrots for your weeknight meals and for lunches. This saves on dishes and time!

Mini-muffins or standard size?

I used to make standard sized muffins for the kids to take to school all the time, but I was always sending them in plastic bags. I have a personal goal to try to send zero-waste/low-waste lunches as much as I can, so these mini-muffins fit perfectly in the containers I have for the kids’ lunch boxes.

Waste-reducing tip: Avoid paper muffin tin liners

You can reduce waste by simply greasing your mini-muffin tins with cooking spray and skipping the paper liner. You can also purchase silicone mini-muffin liners.

If you’d like to make standard sized muffins, simply increase the cooking time by 5 minutes.

The kids couldn’t keep their grubby little fingers off these muffins.

Meal prep tips for Carrot Oat Mini-Muffins

If you want to pre-measure your ingredients, then bake them later, use three containers: One for the dry ingredients, one for the liquid ingredients and one for the carrots. You can whip together a batch quickly while your dinner is in the oven, then bake them while you eat. When they’re ready, you clean up once! Plus, your oven will already be pre-heated from cooking dinner.

Warm or cool?

I typically enjoy a warm fresh-baked muffin right out of the oven, but these muffins are a lot more flavorful when you let them cool and allow the flavors to concentrate.

Carrot Oat Mini Muffins

Carrot Oat Mini Muffins are the perfect bite-sized treat.

Course Breakfast, Snack
Keyword carrot, mini muffins, muffins, oatmeal
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 24 minutes
Servings 40 muffins

Ingredients

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 cups unsweetened apple sauce
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 cups carrots

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 F.

  2. Combine brown sugar, applesauce, egg and vanilla. Mix until thoroughly combined.

  3. Add flour, oats, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and mix until combined.

  4. Stir in carrots.

  5. Use a cookie scoop to drop into greased or lined mini muffin tins.

  6. Bake at 375 F for 15 minutes.

Do you need a meal plan?

You might be wondering if you really NEED a meal plan. There are a few questions you can ask yourself (see the image below) to see if you might need a meal plan, but it really boils down to whether you WANT a meal plan or not.

We are often our own worst enemy when it comes to meal planning and feeding our families. That is why I created the Feeding Busy Families Masterclass, a four-week group accountability program to help busy families like mine, tune in to their current habits and make them work for their family. If you’re wondering if this masterclass is a good fit for you, I’m breaking it down for you in this post.

Are you busy?

The word “busy” can have different meanings for everyone, so in your opinion, do you feel busy? Do you feel like there aren’t enough hours in the day to accomplish the things you want? If you answered yes, then you are busy.

In week 1 of the masterclass we talk about your meal planning goals and how your busyness hinders you from feeding your family on your terms. Are you working late? Is your spouse working out of town? Do your kids have a lot of after-school activities? Most of these events have a huge impact on feeding our families, but can’t be adjusted. You CAN adjust your meal plan to work with your schedule, and that’s what we cover in weeks 1 and 2 of the Feeding Busy Families Masterclass.

Are you scrambling to make dinner?

This question plays into your busyness but can also be affected by kitchen organization and general time management skills. In week 2, we discuss how to organize your kitchen for efficiency so that you can get meals on the table quickly on busy nights. In week 4, we create a routine that works for YOUR family and YOUR schedule and explore strategies to make changes to it as your family’s needs change.

Do you have a hard time deciding what to make?

In week 1 of the masterclass we talk about family favorites, likes and dislikes so that in week 2, you can create a Meal Planning Bank to eliminate decision-fatigue and have ideas ready at your fingertips, every time you sit down to make your meal plan. We also talk about how to strategically choose meals to work with your family’s schedule. The 100 page workbook also comes with over 50 meal ideas to help you if you feel uninspired.

Often, having a hard time deciding what to make boils down to trying to please everyone in the family. In week 2, we look at creating a meal plan that works for your family and that includes planning with picky eaters in mind. My Feeding Picky Eaters E-Book is included in the resource package you will receive for this masterclass.

Do you want more time to yourself?

My goal as a parent is always to squeeze in as much time for myself as I possibly can. If you have this goal too, we cover time-management strategies in weeks 3 and 4, to ensure that you are maximizing your time in the kitchen, to get that much needed rest and relaxation when your kids go to sleep. In week 3, we focus on meal prep strategies and techniques that will save you time while prepping and cooking. In week 4, we look at time-management as a whole, and focus on ways to carve out time to do the activities you love.

Do you want to save money?

For two years, we were living on one income with four kids because we couldn’t find daycare for four kids under four. This made us get creative with our spending and find ways to save money. It’s actually very easy to save money in the kitchen, and in week 3 we talk about grocery budgeting and foods that you can make at home that will reduce your grocery spending.

Do you waste food?

Wasting food can be frustrating. Preparing too much, buying the wrong ingredients for the week, not having a plan and feeding picky eaters can all play into this. In week 2, we discuss how to plan and prep for meals to avoid food waste, as well as what to do with ingredients that tend to spoil quickly or tend to be wasted often.

Do you want to eat healthy?

This is often one of the reasons why people want to create a meal plan and have prep strategies to help them achieve this goal. “Eating healthy” can look different for all families. It’s important to consider food availability, accessibility and budget when making a meal plan that works for your family. In the week 1 one-on-one call, we discuss your meal planning goals, which could include eating healthy. In week 2, we take it one step further and look at ways to create your meal plan with your goals and priorities in mind.

Focus on your goals

Whether you answered yes to all of these questions, or just one, the Feeding Busy Families Masterclass focuses on all of these topics. The small group (5 people) encourages interaction with other parents who are in the same boat and allows for individualized meal planning strategies. The initial one-on-one call in week 1 helps me learn more about your family’s needs and goals so that I can highlight strategies that will work specifically for YOU during our group sessions.

What else is included?

The Feeding Busy Families Masterclass includes the following:

  • One 1:1 Zoom call
  • Three one-hour group Zoom calls
  • Access to the Facebook accountability group with past and present masterclass students
  • Detailed 100-page printable workbook

Register before September 30th and receive the following additional bonuses:

  • Extra one-on-one follow up call one month after the masterclass to check on your progress and fine-tune your routine
  • 52-page planner with a detachable grocery list to write out your meal plans and save them for the future.

Still have questions?

Send me an email if you have any questions about this masterclass or other ways that I can help you achieve your meal planning goals.