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What’s In That Bowl?

February 3, 2010

I keep getting questions regarding the following picture…


I posted the picture to show my roasted kabocha, but several of you wanted to know about the veggies. CD and I eat a ton of stir-fried veggies and always make veggies the base of all our meals. You will never see us using vegetables as a topping on rice, pasta, etc. Again, veggies, ALWAYS the base. So I thought I’d share a few of our favorite ways to prepare them.

Our Method:

First you need a bit of fat. I always used to try and use spray oil from a can, but it doesn’t work nearly as well. CD usually cooks his vegetables in coconut oil or bacon (we like different veggies, and so we usually cook them in separate skillets side-by-side), and I like to cook mine with either 1/2 TBSP coconut oil, 1/2 TBSP ghee, or a slice of bacon.

Add 1/2 or 1 full chopped onion to your skillet with your fat of choice. Turn heat to medium-high and cook onion for about 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Then add your other chopped veggies. CD and I don’t mess around. My skillet usually gets filled with 1/2 onion, 1/2 bell pepper, 10 to 12 Brussels sprouts, and 1/2 a zucchini squash. Add salt and pepper to your liking and keep stirring for about 5 to 7 minutes. Next I add 8 ounces of fresh sliced mushrooms, and once those look cooked, I test my veggies by inserting a fork into the Brussels. Once they are done, I throw in a few handfuls of spinach and keep stirring until the spinach is wilted. That’s it. That’s what we eat for dinner most nights. The only thing that changes are our toppings.  

Some of my favorites bowls…

Veggies stir-fried with 1 slice of bacon and topped with a drizzle of tahini.


Veggies stir-fried in ghee and topped with nutritional yeast and tahini.


Um, I think this one was veggies stir fried with some chicken sausage and topped with tahini.


The following photo was as last night’s dinner. Veggies stir-fried with 1 slice of bacon and 2 whisked eggs added during the last minute of cooking. CD’s plate looked exactly the same with the addition of tons of Parm. πŸ™‚


So, there you have it. How do you stir-fry? Oh, and I’d like to again thank my Dad for his wonderful Christmas gift of pots and pans. Dad, we use the skillets every night! πŸ™‚

P.S. Have y’all done any of the Yoga Sculpt classes from YogaDownload? I’ve done them before, but I guess I’m out of yoga shape. After yesterday’s 30 minute class, I am sore. The bridge pose series at the end was intense!

92 Comments leave one →
  1. February 3, 2010 9:59 am

    That’s my kind of dinner (wilted kale is a favorite, too), although I’m so sad that I have a raging onion intolerance. I love onions, so it’s infuriating that my body hates them.

  2. Carolyn permalink
    February 3, 2010 10:06 am

    Love this post…

  3. Erin permalink
    February 3, 2010 10:20 am

    Love your method, as I never thought of using bacon! Genius! I usually caramelize my onions first – a whole onion, covered in a dry pan over medium heat. When they are dry, I add just a touch of butter and cover again until they caramelize. I also throw carrots into a pot of boiling water just so they start to soften up, then add to stir-fry with broccoli, bell pepper (usually red) and Brussels. Sometimes I add tofu, too. When it’s halfway done, I throw in a clove of minced garlic, sliced mushrooms, and at the very end, I add a handful of spinach just until it wilts. I don’t usually top my stir-fry with anything other than pepper – I love the sweetness of the caramelized onions with the pepper!

  4. February 3, 2010 10:36 am

    Oh, the veggie bowls!!! I eat at least one of those every single day! I can’t get enough. I usually either stir fry and top with sauce or roast and top with sauce. I’ve never tried stir-fries brussels though. This is a pretty standard breakfast/lunch/dinner around my house. I actually just posted some photos of my veggie bowls a couple days ago (and more about a month ago).

    Oh, and my favorite method of stir frying is in a cast iron. I highly recommend one of these. Good way to get some added iron too.

    I took your advice and tried the 60 min yoga sculpt. Yowza.

  5. February 3, 2010 10:39 am

    Katie, Love my cast iron but it smokes and smokes. Was I turning the heat up too high?

  6. Liza permalink
    February 3, 2010 11:09 am

    Love love love the veggie bowls! I eat them constantly. My husband tells me that this is the reason why our house always smells like rabbit farts. That comment alone tells me that he and CD would get along great!

    I have done the 60-minute Yoga Sculpt from YDL two times and it is the hardest yoga I’ve ever done. My sore spot is my shoulders. But I agree – the bridge series is a KILLER!

    Keep up the good work, by the way – I love your blog.

  7. February 3, 2010 11:54 am

    I’m right with you on vegetables for the base. If I have pasta ever, it just has to be so full of vegetables that someone would call it veggies with a bit of pasta on top. I usually use EVOO. I just cooked some tofu/tempeh/broccoli in sesame oil and hope the flavor came throuhg

  8. February 3, 2010 12:09 pm

    Yum – I need to get back on the stir fry kick!

  9. February 3, 2010 12:11 pm

    Oh those sound good!!! Veggies can be so delicious if cooked right!! I don’t stir fry too often but I should.. so simple and easy.

  10. February 3, 2010 12:13 pm

    Thanks for this post! I also have often tried to get away with using spray oil in a can, and it’s just not the same. I usually stick to EVOO, and try to use the smallest amount possible. I love that your photos serve as proof that meals where vegetables are the FOCUS can also be delicious and satisfying!

  11. February 3, 2010 12:16 pm

    Oh I LOVE veggies…this looks like the perfect meal ever!!! πŸ™‚

  12. February 3, 2010 12:32 pm

    Even I think those veggies look good!!

  13. February 3, 2010 12:32 pm

    I love a big bowl of veggies as my base, with tons of salsa and some egg whites. Easiest dinner ever!

  14. February 3, 2010 12:35 pm

    I am so going to try these πŸ™‚ I got bored of stirfrys a while back… but these look fabulous

    xx Sam xx

  15. February 3, 2010 12:37 pm

    I love your veggie dinners, Heather. Whenever I make one I think of you! I definitely need to have them more often, though. Do you buy most of your produce in bulk?

    Random question, but do you have any yoga contacts in CA? I want to look into a studio practice (rather than a gym one!), but there are so many that I thought I’d ask around before I started…

  16. February 3, 2010 12:38 pm

    I love both of your cooking methods here! Roasted and stirfried things are so good!! Mushrooms are the best, especially in stir fries.

    Have you ever used avocado oil? I’ve seen it but never tried it… it looks intrigueing!

  17. February 3, 2010 12:45 pm

    youre so right that using veggies as a base is so much smarter and healthier! i really like all the different topping ideas!

  18. February 3, 2010 12:56 pm

    I became a stir-fry goddess when I was in love with Dr. Atkins. I would just throw in everything but the kitchen sink.

    Lately I haven’t done them and need to get back to them. usually I’ll use a soy meat, egg or tofu in them though. I certainly have enough of everything lying around to do a Hugh Jass Stirfry like I used to do and like you and Miss Averie Sunshine do. I didn’t realize that you do this sort of thing almost every night! Good job!

    I also stir-fry leeks and if I have an apple that’s going south, I’ll throw that in too.

  19. February 3, 2010 12:59 pm

    Have not done yoga sculpt, but you have me intrigued me to check it out, thanks!

  20. February 3, 2010 1:03 pm

    I stir fry in olive and sesame oil, and always add veggies that release a lot of liquid, so it makes a yummy asian-y sauce, especially if i add ginger πŸ™‚

  21. February 3, 2010 1:04 pm

    Dear Hethereatsalmondbutter, the roasted kabocha looks fantastic! When I saw them it brought back memories of when I was in California and my friend made kabocha. OMG! Incredible presentation. Loved your site, very professional. Photos were crisp and clear. I shall be back for a bite of more.
    Thank you for sharing.
    Cheers, Gaby
    You can visit me at

  22. Jenny R. permalink
    February 3, 2010 1:05 pm

    food porn at its finest πŸ™‚

  23. February 3, 2010 1:05 pm

    That looks yummy. I love stir fry. I start with sesame oil and sautee some garlic, onions, and ginger, then add typically carrots, celery, bok choy, broccoli, green pepper, and whatever else I have around that sounds good. I love spicy so I top with a little low sodium soy sauce and lots of chili sauce!

  24. February 3, 2010 1:11 pm

    Thanks Liza, I think we should go on a double date. My husband and your husband would definitely get along, and you and I could talk veggies and yoga. πŸ™‚

  25. February 3, 2010 1:14 pm

    Mae, I have not ever used avocado oil. Love my coconut butter and butter. πŸ™‚

  26. February 3, 2010 1:18 pm

    Lara, Yes we try to buy all our produce in bulk…we’re known as the veggie couple at our Costco.

    I don’t have any yoga contacts in CA, but Jenna from Eat Live Run may have a few suggestions for you, or I could ask my readers. Are you living right in San Fran?

  27. pippapatchwork permalink
    February 3, 2010 1:27 pm

    I love your method! I too could live on veggies. I’m often surprised by how delicious they are just steamed with some salt, and then any dressing/sauce you want to add. Steaming tends to keep the veggies moist, which I really enjoy, but it can be tricky since different kinds require a different amount of time.

  28. February 3, 2010 1:28 pm

    I love stir fried veggies! Especially broccoli!!

    Your dinners sound perfect!
    ❀ jess

  29. February 3, 2010 1:31 pm

    Now I am REALLY hungry!

  30. February 3, 2010 1:39 pm

    YUM! Tons of cooked veggies with *fat* is probably the most filling meal for me. And there’s nothing like eating a ton of veggies to make you feel refreshed and clean…if that makes sense =)

    I just started using tahini, but I’ve been using it as a spread with stevia and cinnamon. How do you use it as a sauce? Do you melt it or add anything to it?

  31. February 3, 2010 1:45 pm

    Gracie, My favorite tahini dressing is Lemisoni dressing: I sometimes make this sauce with tahini: I also love to use it in Mae’s humnut sauce: However, lately, I’ve been just drizzling it plain on top of my veggies. I just love the taste of tahini all by itself.

  32. February 3, 2010 1:49 pm

    These look so good. I just got a giant wok for Christmas and have only used it once. You’ve inspired me!

  33. February 3, 2010 1:52 pm

    Awesome, thanks!! I’ll definitely have to try those recipes. Although I’ve fallen in love with the taste of plain tahini too πŸ™‚

  34. eaternotarunner permalink
    February 3, 2010 1:53 pm

    I love veggies stir-fried like that! Yum!

  35. February 3, 2010 2:15 pm

    My padre is in charge of all of our stir-fries. He has a massive wok, and I have no idea what goes into it… but the final product is always incredible. We also use veggies as our base–though I remember that, as a kid, there was always a little pasta in the mix.

  36. February 3, 2010 2:19 pm

    Perfect dinner.. veggies are always the star of my meal too, NOT a side!! πŸ™‚

    Thanks for sharing your method!

  37. February 3, 2010 2:27 pm

    Thanks for the explanation! I have often drooled looking at your pretty veggie bowls. And now that I have my own tahini I can start drizzling it all over my stir frys (fries?) too! Also love your “veggies as base” food philosophy – I’m totally on board with that!

  38. stelladoesblogging permalink
    February 3, 2010 3:11 pm

    Looks good! What a great way of having your veggies! I think I’ll need to give this method go, I’ve been terrible with the lack of veg in my diet lately.

  39. Danielle permalink
    February 3, 2010 3:51 pm

    Well, I know what I’m having for dinner…

  40. February 3, 2010 4:00 pm

    Thank you for this wonderful tutorial! I do my veggies extremely similarly, only I am usually stuck in the spray rut- I know they are so much better with a little fat though! You have inspired me to try tahini and nooch together- sounds fabulous. As always, your meals look perfection.

  41. February 3, 2010 4:38 pm

    Ooooooooo coconut oil?! I never thought to cook veggies in this I’m liking your style! Every single meal looks sooooooooo good x x

  42. February 3, 2010 4:57 pm

    Heather it looks delish as always! You always seem to know just what my stomach is hungry for πŸ™‚

  43. February 3, 2010 5:18 pm

    Day 3 is almost over! Thanks for the encouragement dear one:). About to head to Monika’s yoga class… time to turn off the brain even more. So I looked for nutritional yeast at WFM today and couldn’t find it?? Is that what it’s labeled?- Nutritional yeast?…or dry yeast? I want to give it a try! Last night at our NUT meeting you were a topic of discussion…Gordo shared about your mac and cheese and Alyssa made a comment on your post yesterday…they love you and are excited to try some recipes! Happy day to you!

  44. February 3, 2010 5:53 pm

    Again, thanks so much for spreading the HEAB love Jillian! πŸ™‚

    Look for nutritional yeast in either the bulk bins or the supplement section, and make sure you buy nutritional yeast and NOT Brewer’s yeast. People often mistake them for the same thing.

  45. February 3, 2010 6:27 pm

    now i’m loving that bowl, need to get to the store for more veggies… πŸ™‚

  46. February 3, 2010 6:31 pm

    I couldn’t agree with you more! ALl meals should start with a base of veggies or fruit. The rest is just for decoration. πŸ˜‰

  47. February 3, 2010 6:48 pm

    Seriously, aren’t all meals veggie based. When did people start thinking that every meal was based on the meat choice??? I eat stir fried veggies almost every night and normally on a salad. I just like it that way! I had spaghetti quash, grilled zucchini and lentils for dinner tonight. And for dessert…oatmeal with fruit! So good!

  48. Kathryn permalink
    February 3, 2010 7:12 pm

    Heather — do you ever use olive oil? If not, what are your reasons against it? Just wondering!

  49. February 3, 2010 7:27 pm

    Kathryn, Olive oil is good, but I only usually use it in salad dressings or for flavor. B/C olive oil can oxidize when heated, I prefer to eat it raw. That’s why I usually only cook with coconut oil or ghee – both are better for high heat cooking.

  50. February 3, 2010 9:34 pm

    These could be my meals any night of the week. Love my eggs, butter, ghee and the bacon….nice touch! The top photo of veggies with bacon and tahini looks great! Love how u guys cook in your own skillets side by side!

  51. February 3, 2010 9:47 pm

    I had some troubles with my cast iron smoking for a while too. I find that if I just turn the stovetop to medium heat and wait to add the veggies until it is heated that helps. I assume it is well-seasoned? I rinse mine with a cloth after cooking in it and then leave a light coat of oil on it when I store it. It helps keep it “wet” and I don’t have to add oil next time I use it.

    I just had another veggie bowl for dinner. Have you tried beets in stir fry? First time tonight – so good with the hummus/nooch sauce. Really, what isn’t though?

  52. February 3, 2010 9:54 pm

    I so need to stir-fry up some veggies a la HEAB! I know what I’m having for dinner tomorrow! And tahini IS the best! I make your tahini dressing ALL the time!

  53. February 3, 2010 9:58 pm

    Mouth watering at your veggies. Mmmmmmm.

  54. February 3, 2010 11:47 pm

    I love stir-fried veggies. Veggies are pretty much the base of my foods too. I wish my bf ate more veggies like yours does. Wait, is it husband? Sorry for my ignorance. I’ll have to try some of your recipes above!

  55. February 4, 2010 12:26 am

    I cook tons of stir frys/sauteed veggies, similar to the way you described. But I always cook them in olive oil, as everything I’ve read and according to a couple of nutritionists olive oil is heat stable and completely acceptable for high heat. I hope so because I sure eat a lot of it!

    Basically ~1 TB of olive oil and 1/4- 1/2 an onion + garlic until soft, then any or all of the following: cabbage, zucchini, bell peppers, spinach, kale, mushrooms. Sometimes I venture out into collard greens and other veggies, but those are my staples for sure.

  56. February 4, 2010 12:43 am

    mmmmmmmmmm thank you so much for sharing! i am emailing my mom this recipe!! i love that you use ghee or bacon, and don’t onions just make everything taste amazing!!!!!!! i loveee using LOTS of onions, though I often regret it later, since they are kind of harsh on my tum tum

  57. February 4, 2010 2:51 am

    I have been following your blog for a while now and have found so many similar findings in terms of exercise and nutrition.

    I used to run a great deal but I was stockier than I am now that I maintain/lose weight with yoga and walking (which I love – no stress on the body!) and I have found a diet around good fats has really helped. I’m so glad I have found a blog with a similar plan!

  58. balancejoyanddelicias permalink
    February 4, 2010 5:37 am

    this is wonderful… what I just called it a comfort food! πŸ˜€

  59. Cole permalink
    February 4, 2010 6:06 am

    That stir fry looks seriously good, even first thing in the morning!

  60. Morgan permalink
    February 4, 2010 6:15 am

    Kind of off topic, but do you have a favorite yogadownload class?

  61. February 4, 2010 7:02 am

    What can I say that the pictures don’t? πŸ˜‰

    Question: how do you find your digestion? I know too much can often be a huge problem for the old gut too …if ya know what i mean ….:0 (sorry if asking TMI!!)

  62. February 4, 2010 7:32 am

    Thanks Katie, I’ll give the beets a try. I bet golden beets would be amazing in a stir-fry – I love how they taste buttery.

  63. February 4, 2010 7:34 am

    Eatmovelove, No worries, I get the veggie bloat question all the time. Veggies have never bothered me. I know many people have problems with cruciferous veggies, but I can eat them all. The only things that bother my stomach are some dairy and soy products.

  64. February 4, 2010 7:35 am

    Morgan, The Hot Power Fusion class is probably my favorite:

  65. February 4, 2010 7:37 am

    jqlee, Husband – yes. I know, I’m very happy to be married to a fellow veggie lover!

  66. February 4, 2010 7:38 am

    Goldie, Glad you found me too. πŸ™‚

  67. February 4, 2010 7:39 am

    Lisa, I’ve read that olive oil can oxidize during high heat cooking. I usually just use it in salad dressings and other raw recipes. That’s why I use ghee or coconut oil for stir-frying.

  68. fitandfortysomething permalink
    February 4, 2010 7:50 am

    My kind of meal!

  69. Gaby permalink
    February 4, 2010 8:33 am

    Hey Heather! Just wanted to check in and say I’m still alive! haha, I’m having a great time in Argentina but the technology situation sort of sucks. I haven’t managed to get internet other than sporadically when I come sit in a cafe and bring my laptop. Today’s the first day in 2 weeks I’ve checked blogs, I”ve missed blogging so much! I don’t know how I”ll catch up with everything on my google reader.
    The food is good here, I’ve mostly been eating out because I was traveling the first week and a half but now I’m settling into my grandmothers. Mostly pastas and bread, veggies are hard to come by but I’m working on it. My grandmother is determined to fatten me up so I’m having to beg for my salads :\ BUT All the grocery stores have kabocha!!! I’m going to have to start stocking up and seeing if my grandmother will let me eat something not fried (my stomach has been in shock for most of these 2 weeks) Your veggie bowls are quite enticing! I also found the most amazing cereal ever in a natural store yesterday, cereal made of little oatmeal grain pockets filled with peanut butter and honey! OMG I’m going to stock up before going home.

    Hope you’re doing well! I’m missing my yoga so I”ll def download that yoga sculpt too. I’ll try to keep in touch as best as I can!

  70. February 4, 2010 8:40 am

    Enjoy your time there Gaby…it’s sounds like an amazing adventure thus far. Oh, and enjoy your kabocha as well! πŸ˜‰

  71. February 4, 2010 10:33 am

    I never think about using alternative fats other than olive oil to stir fry in. Thanks for sharing your various methods!

  72. February 4, 2010 10:36 am

    Nope, we’re in the Silicon Valley…more the San Jose area. I never even thought to ask readers! Hehe. Thanks for the ideas. I wish I could fly to Nashville for yoga sessions with you! πŸ™‚

  73. February 4, 2010 12:35 pm

    Your post made me ravenous. I wish I has something other than spicy black bean soup and a banana for lunch…. ugh.

  74. the vegster permalink
    February 4, 2010 2:55 pm

    I had brussel sprouts the other day after not having them for so long and I was so glad I bought them! I see you eat them all the time and was inspired. As well as to be eating many a stir-fries of veggies πŸ™‚

    Do you ever use chard in yours? It’s my new favorite (I just did a post about my love of chard last night) πŸ˜›


  75. February 4, 2010 3:26 pm

    Stir fry yes. Mushrooms no no no.


  76. February 4, 2010 4:00 pm

    Ashley, No, I never use chard, but I have a recipe I’ve been dying to make that calls for some. Thanks for the reminder – I need to pick some up next I’m at the store.

  77. February 4, 2010 9:45 pm

    I just did a Yoga Sculpt today – all I can say is – I don’t bend like that. Tough stuff!

  78. February 4, 2010 9:46 pm

    Allieinalberta, I know. I think it’s YogaDownload’s most difficult class.

  79. February 4, 2010 9:48 pm

    I love kabocha, that looks so good!

  80. February 5, 2010 6:47 am

    I read this post yesterday and it literally made me start craving cooked vegetables. I’m a sucker for raw veg, I don’t know why- but I love cold foods- but yesterday for my dinner I was so excited I got both grilled peppers and squash on my plate AND sauteed spinach. It was spectacular. I may have to start microwaving some of my vegetables over the weekend. πŸ˜‰

  81. Kaysie permalink
    February 5, 2010 12:20 pm

    oh my I am drooling!

  82. February 5, 2010 3:12 pm

    YUM!!! That’s all I have to say. I like you thinking when it comes to dinner time!

  83. February 5, 2010 8:45 pm


  84. Sally permalink
    February 6, 2010 7:24 am

    Hey Heather! Your bowls of veggies look delicious. Do you have any tips for cutting up veggies (especially oinions) quickly? I’m a slowpoke when it comes to cutting up onions.

  85. February 6, 2010 8:35 am

    Sally, I really don’t have any good tips. I’m a pretty slow chopper myself. That being said, a really good knife can make a world of difference, and I always use my little electric veggie chopper or Magic Bullet for herbs, etc. Works great for onions as well. Oh, and we buy all our mushrooms sliced. SO WORTH paying a little extra. We eat a lot of mushrooms!

  86. February 16, 2010 3:48 pm

    Just stir-fried my veggies in coconut oil for the first time. I am a convert! Love it! Thank you!

  87. February 16, 2010 5:06 pm

    Lara, welcome. πŸ™‚


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