A few years ago Dan and I ate at an eclectic restaurant down the street that was big into pickling.
I was beyond excited to eat there, because it was one of those rare places that had several completely vegan dishes.
So I ordered a seasonal dish with pickled pumpkin, because, pumpkin anything, right?
Well, let’s just say that I’m now a firm believer that some things should remain un-pickled.
Cabbage, however, is not one of those things.
These Pickled Cabbage Quinoa Bowls with Pea Pesto are fun, fresh, and perfect for Spring.
I won’t lie, I definitely chose the red cabbage as my first experience with pickling because of the gorgeous pink color it turns when soaked.
Hey, pretty in pink.
If you’re like me, you might have thought that pickling was a major process.
Like dozens of ball jars sealed shut for months in your basement fridge looking questionably cloudy kind of a process.
But it turns out that quick pickling is actually really easy.
So easy, you can pickle and reap the rewards 3 – 4 hours later!
This bowl starts with steamed kale and quinoa as a hearty base, and builds up to umami, sweet and sour, and lemony flavors.
If you’ve been following my blog a while now, you know that I’m obsessed with I Heart Keenwah toasted quinoa.
It’s so convenient because it’s pre-rinsed, so all you do is measure out your quinoa and add to boiling water.
The result is fluffy, nutty, buttery goodness.
I always make a serving for the week to throw into bowls like this one.
The pea pesto ties this whole thing together with a bow, and serves as the “dressing” of this masterpiece.
I love building variations of pesto using different nuts, seeds, and veggies.
This combo with peas and pistachios is light and perfect for spring and summer!
It’s lemony, tangy, garlicky, herby, and a little sweet.
If you have leftover pesto, try using it as a dip for your favorite veggies.
If you don’t have cabbage on hand or don’t feel like quick-pickling, substitute your favorite sauerkraut for the pickled cabbage.
Try chickpeas or tempeh if you’re looking for a different protein variation.
Need a little more dressing? Try a squeeze of lemon or a lemon tahini.
I like to prep all of the ingredients separately and assemble them the day of for power-packed bowls.
Enjoy these Pickled Cabbage Quinoa Bowls with Pea Pesto as a nutritious lunch or dinner that leaves you feeling light, recharged, and in charge.
Because if you can pickle, you can do anything, right?
Yes, yes, you can.
If you make these Pickled Cabbage Quinoa Bowls with Pea Pesto, I want to see!
Give me a shout on instagram @flora_and_vino and use hashtag #floraandvino to show me your pretty pink pickled cabbage! (Say that 10x fast.)
For more great bowl inspo, check out my Strawberry Herb Quinoa Salad with Zesty Lime Tahini or my Spring Macro Bowl .
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- 2 cups cooked white toasted quinoa
- 1 bunch kale, torn into shreds
- 2 cups frozen green peas
- 1½ cups pickled cabbage (recipe below)
- 8 oz sliced white button mushrooms
- 12 oz. tofu or protein of choice
- splash of balsamic vinegar
- splash of tamari lite
- ⅕ cup veggie broth
- ¼ cup pistachios
- ½ cup frozen peas, thawed
- ¼ tsp garlic powder
- 1 cup packed fresh spinach (or sub basil)
- ¼ cup fresh dill (or sub basil or mint)
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons tahini
- Himalayan sea salt
- Black pepper
- ½ head purple cabbage, shredded with mandoline slicer
- 1 cup filtered water
- 1 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 TBS maple syrup
- Before beginning the recipe, prepare your pickled cabbage 3-4 hours in advance.
- In a bowl, combine shredded purple cabbage, apple cider vinegar, filtered water, and maple syrup.
- Cover and refrigerate for 3-4 hours or overnight.
- Preheat oven to 400 and kine a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Slice tofu into 1" cubes and bake for 15-20 minutes, until lightly browned. Set aside.
- If you haven't already done so, cook your quinoa according to package instruction.
- Make your pea pesto ahead of time by blending together ingredients pistachios through black pepper until well combined, adding more lemon juice as needed to thin.
- To make the mushrooms, heat a large skillet to medium heat.
- Add veggie broth to the pan, then add the mushrooms and a a dash of Himalayan sea salt.
- Toss to coat and then let the mushrooms cook for 3-5 minutes.
- Once your mushrooms are starting to soften and brown, add a splash of balsamic vinegar and tamari lite and stir to combine.
- Let cook for 2-3 more minutes then remove from heat.
- Steam kale and green peas for 2-3 minutes on stove top, until vibrant green and slightly wilted.
- Divide the quinoa and steamed kale amongst bowls and top with mushrooms, baked tofu, pickled cabbage, green peas, and a dollop of pea pesto.
- Store leftovers separately in the fridge for 3-5 days.
- Pickled cabbage will stay good for several weeks.
This post is brought to you by I Heart Keenwah, but all words and eats are my own. Thanks for supporting the sponsors that keep me hungry!