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True Food Kitchen Ancient Grains (Reduced Oil Adaptation)

Ancient Grains Bowl

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I asked Google for the official True Food Kitchen Ancient Grains Bowl recipe and I received it in just a few clicks. Thank you, True Food Kitchen & South Florida Sun-Sentinel!

True Food Kitchen Ancient Grains bowl with quinoa, brown rice, farro, miso-yams, cilantro pesto and more. - Original Credit: Courtesy- Original Source: SouthFlorida.com (True Food Kitchen / Courtesy)
Ancient Grains bowl with quinoa, brown rice, farro, miso-yams, cilantro pesto, and more. Original Source: SouthFlorida.com (True Food Kitchen / Courtesy)

True Food Kitchen has Vegan Options—plural

Our restaurant of choice when dining with family and friends of diverse dietary needs is True Food Kitchen. With many vegan options as well as gluten-free options, True Food Kitchen makes it easy to have a delicious, stress-free night out.

Take It Home

We occasionally order take away from the Cherry Creek location of True Food Kitchen. They have so many vegan options that we always over-order and then happily enjoy the leftovers. We are impressed with TFK’s COVID-19 safety procedures.

Reduced oil content

The Ancient Grains Bowl is one of my favorite vegan menu items at True Foods. I’ve been wanting to recreate it at home. Woot! Now I have the keys to the kingdom!

I’ve adapted the Miso Glazed Yams and the Cilantro Pesto to contain less oil than the official True Food Kitchen recipe provided in this article. These reduced oil adaptions are full-flavor. You won’t miss the extra oil.

Year-round, especially in the fall

I look forward to fall every year. I love feeling nostalgic, smelling dead leaves, and feeling cool air. This ancient grains bowl has a lot of fall vibes, I think it’s the use of pumpkin seeds, yams, and hearty grains. I crave it all year long, especially in the fall.

This recipe is customizable

If cilantro tastes like soap to you, you can use a different pesto, like Lemon Kale-Basil Pesto or Avocado Pistachio Pesto. Or you could substitute other greens for the cilantro and still end up with a delicious pumpkin seed pesto.

You aren’t into mushrooms? Add different grilled/roasted veggies like red peppers or asparagus. Perhaps sub some tofu? Of course you could just skip the shrooms.

Disinterested in snow peas? Try adding some sprouts or edamame instead. I usually skip the snow peas. Sometimes I add roasted broccoli.

Jewel yams are the best

I use Jewel yams for this recipe and I suspect True Food Kitchen does too. Generally speaking, I prefer Jewel yams to any other variety of yam or sweet potato.

Prep

This recipe has a lot of prep. This is how I usually do it if I am making most or all of the components:

  1. Get the yams in the oven to roast them. This way they will be ready for the miso glaze magic.
  2. Next, I make the ancient grains. I like using the Instant Pot as opposed to the oven. It takes less time this way. If you are using the oven, you might want to make the ancient grains first, since they take more time in the oven.
  3. Then I make the miso glaze.
  4. After that, I make the pesto
  5. Next, if I were using the snow peas, I would blanch them.
  6. When I am getting ready to assemble the bowl, I coat the yams with the miso glaze, baking at 400 degrees F for 10 minutes while I sauté the mushrooms and onions on the stovetop. Lastly, I slice and spoon out the avocado and assemble the bowl. The ancient grains go in first and the rest is up to you.

This is a lovely meal prep recipe

My preference is to meal prep the grains, yams, these mushrooms and the pesto and make and enjoy bowls throughout the week. You will have enough to leftover components to make more than just 4 bowls. The leftovers are fabulous to add to soups, salads, wraps, tofu scrambles, toast, or to enjoy as a snack.

If you just want to make just one or a few of the main components click below for the individual recipes:

Make-Ahead Tips

  • Roast the yams and make the miso glaze, but wait to coat the yams and do the last 10 minute bake
  • Make the ancient grains a few days in advance
  • Make the pesto early
  • Blanch the snow peas and slice the mushrooms and onions early
  • Take to-go, it’s even tasty at room temp

Let’s Make Ancient Grains Bowls

Miso Glazed Yams

Roast the yams

Preheat the oven to 415 degrees F.

Lightly toss cubed yams in 2 – 3 TBSPs of the grapeseed oil. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or a sil-mat and spread the yams out evenly on the two baking sheets.

Bake for 15 minutes and toss them. Then bake for 15-20 more minutes or until golden brown. Optional: Toss them again, turn the heat off and let them sit in the oven for 10 – 30 minutes. This dries them out a little, giving them a more concentrated flavor. I recommend this if you have the time.

Make the Miso Vinaigrette

In a blender, combine the vinegar, sambal, soy sauce, sugar, salt, miso paste, and water. Blend until incorporated and smooth.

Add sesame oil and grapeseed oil into vinegar mixture and blend until emulsified.

Combine yams & Miso Vinaigrette

Preheat oven (or lower temp) to 400 degrees F. Toss roasted yams with Miso Vinaigrette and transfer evenly to two baking sheets. Bake until the glaze is bubbly, glossy, slightly browned, and a little thicker, and the yams are hot, about 15 minutes. Flip or toss with a spatula at 10 minutes.

Serve or let cool and store. The glaze will be molten-lava-hot; avoid burning your mouth. Sprinkle with toasted or black sesame seeds if desired.

Cold prepped yams take a little longer to cook than hot-out-of-the-oven roasted yams. Additionally, if one pan has more glaze than the other it may need a little longer as well.

Ancient Grains (see notes below if using the oven)

Place all ancient grains ingredients into the Instant Pot. Close the lid, lock and seal the knob. Set to manual HIGH pressure for 20 minutes. Then release steam and let sit for 10 minutes on the keep warm setting. Stir and serve or store.

If the grains look a little wet, let them sit with the lid off for around 5 minutes and they should absorb any extra water.

Cilantro Pesto

Place all ingredients in a blender or medium food processor. Puree until smooth, scraping down sides with a spatula. Makes about 1.5 cups.

To Plate

Sauté the mushrooms and onions on the stovetop, or use marinated portobellos. For blanched snow peas & roasted broccoli instructions, see notes below. Slice and spoon out the avocado and assemble the bowl.

When plating, the ancient grains go in first and the rest is up to you. I usually meal prep this, heat, and then top with the pesto and avocado, which are best cold. For more topping options, see notes below.

True Food Kitchen Ancient Grains (Reduced Oil Adaptation) with roasted broccoli subbed for snow peas
Ancient Grains Bowl with roasted broccoli in place of snow peas

Notes

For Nutrition Information, consult recipe links.

Ancient Grains Oven Instructions

Increase water to 3 ½ cups. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Using a medium oven proof baking dish or casserole, mix all ingredients together, cover with foil and seal the edges tightly. Bake until all grains are fully cooked, about 75-85 minutes. Mix well before serving. Makes about 5 cups.

To blanch snow peas

Place in boiling water for one minute, drain and rinse with cold water to help the snow peas keep their pretty green color.

To roast broccoli

Preheat Oven to 400 degrees F. Cut broccoli into bite sized pieces. Toss lightly with a high smoke point oil. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and crushed red pepper if desired. Roast for 10 to 15 minutes, tossing occasionally. The broccoli is ready when it begins to brown. www.planttestkitchen.com

Optional toppings

In the True Foods Kitchen promotional photo, it’s topped with hemp seeds. When we ordered it recently, it was topped with sesame seeds. I recommend topping with pumpkin seeds and/or 5-Minute Garlic Hemp Seed Parm a.k.a. Garlic Shake.

True Food Kitchen Ancient Grains (Reduced Oil Adaptation)
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5 from 1 vote

Ancient Grains Bowl

The Ancient Grains Bowl is one of my favorite vegan menu items at True Food Kitchen. Here is a reduced oil adaptation.
Course Bring your lunch, Dinner, Lunch, To go
Cuisine American, California, Fusion, Italian, Mediterranean, Vegan, Vegetarian
Keyword Ancient Grains, make-ahead, Reduced-Oil, TFK, True Food Kitchen, True Foods, vegan
Prep Time 10 minutes
Prep time varies 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 40 minutes
Servings 4

Equipment

  • Instant Pot (optional for grains
)

Ingredients

Prepped Bowl Ingredients

Ancient Grains (see notes below if using the oven)

  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic more if desired I use 2 teaspoons
  • 1 teaspoon peeled and minced ginger
  • 1 teaspoon minced lemongrass
  • 1 teaspoon peeled and minced turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt or flaked Maldon sea salt
  • 1 TBSP extra-virgin olive oil
  • ½ cup red quinoa
  • ½ cup brown rice
  • ½ cup farro spelt
  • cups water see notes below if using the oven
  • Miso glazed yams

Miso Glazed Yams

  • 14 cups jewel yams (about 5 lbs) cut into 1 – 1&½ inch pieces, no need to peel True Food Kitchen leaves the peel on
  • 2 – 3 TBSPs grapeseed oil or other neutral high smoke point oil; i.e. avocado oil or non-virgin olive oil

Miso Vinaigrette for Miso Glazed Yams

  • 3/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup sambal olek
  • 1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce use reduced sodium tamari for gluten free
  • 1/4 cup evaporated cane sugar using cane sugar helps make it a glaze, you can sub other sweeteners, but it may not be as glaze-y
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt or Maldon sea salt flakes
  • 1/3 cup white miso paste sub chickpea miso if needed for soy allergy
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 2/3 cup grapeseed oil or other neutral high smoke point oil; i.e. avocado oil or non-virgin olive oil

Cilantro Pesto

  • 2 bunches cilantro cut thick stems off if desired
  • ¼ cup roasted and salted pumpkin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon chopped garlic or just put a whole peeled clove or two in the food processor without chopping
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt or flaked Maldon sea salt
  • ¼ cup fresh-squeezed orange juice about the juice of half of one orange
  • ¼ cup fresh-squeezed lime juice about the juice of two limes
  • ¼ cup grapeseed oil
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil

Instructions

Miso Glazed Yams

    Roast the yams

    • Preheat the oven to 415 degrees F. 

Lightly toss cubed yams in 2 – 3 TBSPs of the grapeseed oil. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or a sil-mat and spread the yams out evenly on the two baking sheets. Bake for 15 minutes and toss them. Then bake for 15-20 more minutes or until golden brown. Optional: Toss them again, turn the heat off and let them sit in the oven for 10 – 30 minutes. This dries them out a little, giving them a more concentrated flavor. I recommend this if you have the time.

    Make the Miso Vinaigrette

    • In a blender, combine the vinegar, sambal, soy sauce, sugar, salt, miso paste, and water. Blend until incorporated and smooth.
    • Add sesame oil and grapeseed oil into vinegar mixture and blend until emulsified.

    Combine yams & Miso Vinaigrette

    • Preheat oven (or lower temp) to 400 degrees F. Toss roasted yams with Miso Vinaigrette and transfer evenly to two baking sheets. Bake until the glaze is bubbly, glossy, slightly browned, and a little thicker, and the yams are hot, about 15 minutes. Flip or toss with a spatula at 10 minutes.

 Serve or let cool and store. The glaze will be molten-lava-hot; avoid burning your mouth. Sprinkle with toasted or black sesame seeds if desired.

 Cold prepped yams take a little longer to cook than hot-out-of-the-oven roasted yams. Additionally, if one pan has more glaze than the other it may need a little longer as well.

Instructions

    Ancient Grains

    • Place all ancient grains ingredients into the Instant Pot. Close the lid, lock and seal the knob. Set to manual HIGH pressure for 20 minutes. Then release steam and let sit for 10 minutes on the keep warm setting. Stir and serve or store.
    • If the grains look a little wet, let them sit with the lid off for around 5 minutes and they should absorb any extra water.

    Cilantro Pesto

    • Place all ingredients in a blender or medium food processor. Puree until smooth, scraping down sides with a spatula. Makes about 1.5 cups.

    To Plate

    • Sauté the mushrooms and onions on the stovetop, or use marinated portobellos. For blanched snow peas & roasted broccoli instructions, see notes below. Slice and spoon out the avocado and assemble the bowl.
      When plating, the ancient grains go in first and the rest is up to you. I usually meal prep this, heat, and then top with the pesto and avocado, which are best cold. For more topping options, see notes below.

    Notes

    For Nutrition Information, consult recipe links.

    Ancient Grains Oven Instructions

    Increase water to 3 ½ cups. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Using a medium oven proof baking dish or casserole, mix all ingredients together, cover with foil and seal the edges tightly. Bake until all grains are fully cooked, about 75-85 minutes. Mix well before serving. Makes about 5 cups.

    To blanch snow peas

    Place in boiling water for one minute, drain and rinse with cold water to help the snow peas keep their pretty green color.

    To roast broccoli

    Preheat Oven to 400 degrees F. Cut broccoli into bite sized pieces. Toss lightly with a high smoke point oil. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and crushed red pepper if desired. Roast for 10 to 15 minutes, tossing occasionally. The broccoli is ready when it begins to brown. www.planttestkitchen.com

    Optional Toppings

    In the True Foods Kitchen promotional photo, it’s topped with hemp seeds. When we ordered it recently, it was topped with sesame seeds. I recommend topping with pumpkin seeds and/or 5-Minute Garlic Hemp Seed Parm a.k.a. Garlic Shake.

    For your shopping convenience, this post contains affiliate links. Thank you for your support.

    Recipe adapted from True Food Kitchen as provided in this South Florida Sun-Sentinel article.

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    Did you make this Ancient Grains Bowl recipe?

    How was it? Any variations? Did you meal prep it? Would you make it or any of the components again? Did it remind you of the True Food Kitchen dish? Tell me about it in the comments section below.

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