Yumm Bowls - Paleo Style

What is a Yumm Bowl? Good first question to ask!!  My introduction to Yumm Bowl's was a little over ten years ago when it was prepared for me by some friends who are vegetarian.  Layers of rice and beans, a spread of Yumm Sauce, then toppings such as avocado, olive, onion, cheese, salsa, cilantro, and sour cream.  I thought they had made up this recipe and were just calling it "Yummy" but then learned the sauce wasn't their creation, but originated from a restaurant called Cafe Yumm.  This Cafe opened in Eugene, OR and has now spread to other locations in the Portland area, including recently in my home town of Vancouver, WA! The restaurant offers several options as to the contents of the "bowl" as well as a couple variations to the Sauce.  The Yumm Sauce is available for purchase at the restaurant, and I have recently seen it at my local market, Chuck's Produce!

So why this blog? Because when your brain thinks like I do - "wonder if I could make that . . .", you gotta at least try right?  And my attempts were successful so now I must share!  I found a few varieties to the Yumm Sauce recipe to experiment with and on the third attempt found a combination that worked great so I didn't change a thing, thanks to fellow blogger tales of an amazon woman. This is a perfect recipe to make in the Vitamix, just throw everything in and it blends up thoroughly.  It makes a lot, so have an extra jar on hand.

Let's talk Whole30 and paleo.  The first layer of rice and beans doesn't fit well for me so my version of the Yumm Bowl recipe starts with a layer of quinoa, eliminating the rice and beans, then adding the Yumm Sauce and toppings.  And, because I'm not vegetarian, this is a great time to add a layer of shredded chicken!  Then the best part - pile on the toppings -  Avocado, fresh chopped tomatoes, cilantro, olives, and salsa (I've included my pico de gallo recipe below)  If you have learned that you can live without the cheese and sour cream, just add more avocado, fresh tomatoes, cilantro, and olives! (or if you haven't learned to live without cheese and sour cream, this is a great time to try it without first because the flavors are so amazing!) The Yumm Sauce recipe includes a can of garbanzo beans which I have left in the recipe.  With the addition of the other ingredients in the sauce, and considering only a tablespoon or so is included in a serving, it ends up being a pretty small amount of beans.

So let's cook!!  Here is the list of ingredients to blend together in your blender or Vitamix -

1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup almonds  
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup lemon juice (about 2 lemons) 
1/3 cup nutritional yeast
1 can garbanzo beans, drained
2 cloves garlic
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp turmeric

  2 chopped tomatoes
  1 can mild green chilies
  1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  2 Tbsp finely chopped onion


I found Nutritional Yeast locally at Trader Joe's.  It is also available on amazon!

Cook  your quinoa per the instructions on your packaging.  Prepare your toppings and have them ready to "decorate" your bowl - shredded chicken, sliced avocado, olives, cilantro, fresh salsa, tomato, or any other favorites you may have.   Layer the bowl starting with the quinoa, chicken, and Yumm Sauce, then all of your toppings.  Can you say Yumm??

Yumm Bowl

Yumm Bowl

You will most likely have some extra Yumm Sauce, I have experimented with it as a topping for grilled chicken breast and over grilled salmon, both were really good!  And you will probably still have some leftover to put in a cute glass jar and share with a neighbor or friend. 

Here's to healthy eating and easy fixin's!!  Enjoy!!