Copycat Sweetgreen harvest bowl made with marinated chicken, roasted sweet potato and brussels, apple, pecans, goat cheese, and a creamy balsamic dressing. It makes a delicious flavor-packed grain bowl that is perfect for a healthy lunch or dinner and a great option for meal prep. Gluten-free and paleo and Whole30 friendly.
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Bowl meals are my favorite – there is just something about different flavors and textures all piled into one that makes me so happy. And today we are sharing one of my favorite grains bowls – the Sweetgreen harvest bowl!
If you are unfamiliar with Sweetgreen, it is a fast-casual restaurant that serves healthy salads and grain bowls. I discovered them in 2019 while in DC for our friend’s wedding. I ended up getting it 2 times in 3 days and was so excited when they launched in Austin last year.
While we love grabbing a bowl for an easy weeknight meal, it can quickly add up as they can easily run over $10 each. So I figured let’s make it at home!
Why I love this recipe
I love this copycat harvest bowl because:
- it’s loaded with different textures and flavors – sweet, savory, creamy, crunchy, and some acidity
- packed with protein, carbs, and fat for a good macronutrient breakdown
- full of lots of different vitamins and minerals thanks to all the colors
- creamy dressing thanks to almond butter
- perfect for meal prep
- a lot of the time making it is hands-off
- cheaper than buying one!
While this recipe is not exactly like Sweetgreen (I added my own spin), it’s pretty dang close! Made with baby kale, marinated and roasted chicken, roasted sweet potatoes and brussel sprouts, sprouted brown rice, apple, goat cheese, and pecans.
I opted for sprouted brown rice as sprouted grains are easier to digest for some and can help increase nutrient availability in the body. I love NOW’s sprouted brown rice as it has a light nutty flavor with just a touch of sweetness. It makes the perfect addition to this grain bowl adding some complex carbs and a little protein and fiber.
Don’t forget to use the code ‘EATTHEGAINS’ for 20% off at nowfoods.com through 12/31/21!
How to make Sweetgreen harvest bowl recipe
This Sweetgreen copycat recipe is full of veggies, protein, and healthy fats, and makes an absolutely delicious lunch or dinner and a great option for meal prep!
While this grain bowl does take some time and has a decent number of steps, a lot of the time is inactive cooking time. You can also prep things in advance to make assembly easier (see below for details).
Sweetgreen harvest bowl ingredients:
- chicken – I used thighs, but breasts also work
- sweet potatoes
- brussel sprouts – not in the original recipe, so leave off if you like
- goat cheese
- baby kale
- salt and pepper
- creamy balsamic dressing
First, marinate the chicken. While this is optional, I think it really brings the bowl to the next level. Let it sit for at least 30 minutes or up to 8 hours.
Next, make your rice. Follow the directions on the bag.
Then, prep the sweet potatoes and brussel sprouts. Dice sweet potato and cut brussels in half. Toss with oil and salt and pepper. Roast in the oven, along with your chicken, for 35-45 minutes under tender.
Next, make the creamy balsamic dressing. See below for details. When the chicken, veggies, and rice are almost done, prep the remaining ingredients. Dice you your apple, crumble the goat cheese, and roughly chop the pecans.
Finally, assemble your grain bowls. Evenly divide the greens, rice, chicken, roasted veggies, apple, goat cheese, and nuts. Serve with the creamy balsamic dressing and enjoy!
As I said above, marinating the chicken is optional, but it really adds some flavor to this power bowl. Not only that, the marinade is amazing and will be your new favorite. It’s simple yet flavorful, easy to make, and goes with so many things. You’ll want to use it for more than just this harvest bowl!
- coconut aminos
- garlic powder
- red pepper flakes
- salt and pepper
Add all ingredients to a large glass baking dish or plastic bag and mix well to combine, making sure the spices evenly coat the chicken. Let marinate for 30 minutes or up to 8 hours.
Once done marinating, add to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and roast for 35-45 minutes juicy and tender. Chicken is done when it reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit. The time will depend on the size of your chicken thighs.
You can also pan-fry or grill the chicken if you find those ways easier.
Creamy balsamic dressing
What’s a good power bowl without a delicious dressing. This creamy balsamic is made with only 4 ingredients, 2 of them being salt and water, and makes a delicious creamy salad dressing thanks to the addition of all-natural almond butter.
Creamy balsamic dressing ingredients:
- balsamic vinegar
- almond butter
Add all ingredients to a small jar and mix well to combine. I find using an immersion blender works best to make sure it’s thoroughly combined, but you can just mix with a fork as well. Add more water if you want a thinner consistency.
I loving making a batch of these on Sunday to use for meal prep throughout the week. They keep and hold up really well for up to a week. You can go about prepping them a few different ways, depending on the time you have and how much you want to make in advance.
- partial prep – there are a few things you can do beforehand to make assembly easy. Either do one or a couple of these things below. The time will range from 5-15 minutes of active time working in the kitchen.
- cook the rice – cook rice according to the directions and store in the fridge for up to one week until ready to use.
- marinade the chicken – marinade and then roast 35-45 minutes before you want to assemble your bowls.
- chop and/or roast the veggies – either chop the veggies and store them in the fridge until you are ready to roast or fully roast them. Store in a glass container in the fridge.
- make the dressing – mix and store in a small jar in the pantry.
- full prep – prep and cook all your ingredients according to the recipe directions. If making them for a grab-n-go lunch, you can fully assemble the bowls. If making them for a meal where you have time to assemble, store the chicken, rice, veggies, and dressing separately. When ready to eat, chop your apple, crumble the cheese, chop the pecans, and assemble the bowls.
- heating them up – we personally enjoy these cold them I meal prep them, but I know that not everyone likes cold food. Simply store the rice, chicken, and veggies separately and heat them up.
Sweetgreen harvest bowl nutrition
This harvest bowl has a great macronutrient breakdown making it a great balanced meal. It’s also full of micronutrients thanks to all the different colors.
- protein from the chicken and a little from the veggies, rice, cheese, and nuts
- complex carbs from the sprouted rice, sweet potato, and veggies
- fiber from the rice and veggies
- healthy fats from the chicken, cheese, nuts, oil, and almond butter in the dressing
- packed with vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, B2, B6, manganese, potassium, and copper from all the different veggies
The Sweetgreen harvest bowl calories come out to be 664, with 36 grams of protein, 64 grams of carbs, 32 grams of fat, and 13 grams of fiber.
Overall, this is very similar to the restaurant version, with fewer calories, a little more carbs, and a little less fat.
Harvest bowl substitutions
Make this harvest bowl your own with these substitutions or additions below. It is easily customizable!
- grains – any kind of grains will work. Some good substitutions would be quinoa, wheat berries, or farro.
- chicken – chicken breasts or thighs will work. I prefer chicken thighs as they have a little more fat and are juicier. You can also use turkey breast as well.
- potatoes – any kind of potato or even winter squash will work, including white potatoes and butternut squash. Using those will change the flavor slightly.
- veggies – use any veggies you like! The more the merrier. Zucchini, peppers, and even broccoli or cauliflower would be good substitutes or additions.
- cheese – any kind of cheese will work. Cheddar, mozzarella, or feta would be delicious, they are just not as creamy.
- nuts – any kind of nuts will work including cashews, walnuts, or almonds.
- greens – any kind of greens will work.
- make it plant-based – to make this meal vegetarian, swap out the chicken for tofu, chickpeas, beans, or lentils.
- make it Whole30 and paleo – leave off the cheese.
More power bowl recipes
- Veggie Power Bowl
- Chicken Burrito Bowl
- Greek Chicken Bowls
- Beet Quinoa Breakfast Bowls
- Fall Veggie Chicken Power Bowl
- Greek Lamb Meatball Bowls
Sweetgreen Harvest Bowl
Sweetgreen Harvest Bowl
- 2/3 cups sprouted brown rice (uncooked)
- 2 small sweet potatoes, diced (10 ounces)
- 1 pound brussel sprouts, trimmed and cut in half
- 1 large apple (175 grams)
- 1/2 cup pecans
- 1/2 cup goat cheese (2 ounces)
- 8 packed cups baby kale (8 ounces)
- 1 1/2 tablespoons avocado oil (olive oil works the same)
- salt and pepper, to taste
Creamy Balsamic Dressing
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoons almond butter
- 1-2 tablespoons water (or more for thinning it out)
- salt, to taste
- Marinate your chicken. Add the chicken, coconut aminos, garlic, ginger, red pepper flakes, and salt and pepper to a large glass baking dish or plastic bag and mix well to combine, making sure the spices evenly coat the chicken. Let marinate for 30 minutes or up to 8 hours. When done marinating, roast in the oven on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper for 35-45 minutes until cooked through.
- Roast your veggies. Add diced sweet potatoes and brussel sprouts to a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Toss with oil and salt and pepper. Roast in the oven, along with your chicken, for 35-45 minutes under tender.
- Make your rice by following the directions on the package.
- While the rice and veggies cook, make the dressing. Add the balsamic vinegar, almond butter, salt, and 1 tablespoon water to a small jar and mix well to combine. I find using an immersion blender works best to make sure it's thoroughly combined, but you can just mix with a fork as well. Add more water if you want a thinner consistency.
- When the rice and veggies are almost done, dice the apple, crumble the goat cheese, and roughly chop the pecans.
- Assemble your bowls. Evenly divide the greens, rice, chicken, roasted veggies, apple, goat cheese, and nuts. Serve with the creamy balsamic dressing and enjoy!
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