My chimichurri shrimp bowl brings a deliciously healthy slant to meal time with lots of bold, zesty flavor and hearty ingredients. Prepared with juicy seared shrimp, quinoa, super greens, caramelized red onion, black beans and tomato, this scrumptious shrimp bowl is dressed in a zippy and vibrant chimichurri vinaigrette!
A Shrimp Bowl with Bright, Zesty Flavors
One of the things I love most about long weekend getaways is finding neat places to eat along the way.
I garner so much inspiration when my hubby and I are out and about sampling fare at different eateries, and often bring that inspiration home with me to re-create, using my own unique twist, some of the tasty morsels we enjoyed along the way.
During a recent trip to northern California, we stopped for lunch at a healthy little cafe we stumbled upon, and thoroughly enjoyed a couple of delectably filling and mouthwatering steak bowls, loaded up with all sorts of yummy bells and whistles.
They were wonderfully fresh tasting, brimming with texture and flavor, not to mention incredibly filling.
This little “power lunch” kept our bellies totally satisfied as we went sightseeing into the afternoon and early evening!
Those tasty bowls were the inspiration for these chimichurri shrimp bowls here, brimming with succulent seared shrimp seasoned with spices, plus fluffy quinoa, super greens (a mix of hearty, healthy greens), black beans, caramelized onion and cherry tomatoes, all dressed with my chimichurri vinaigrette.
Filled with texture, flavor, and an abundance of good-for-you “super food” ingredients, this mouthwatering shrimp bowl recipe has become a new favorite of ours when we're craving a densely nutritious meal that's fantastically satisfying—not to mention, irresistibly delicious!
My Chimichurri Shrimp Bowl Recipe
Part of the appeal of “bowls” is the various little components that they're filled with, bringing lots of different textures to the experience.
The best bowls have both cool and warm elements, as well as succulent and crisp elements, each bringing a little surprise to every bite taken.
I love to combine antioxidant rich “super greens” with some gently warm quinoa, and enjoy a bit of texture and flavor from black beans, tomatoes, and warm caramelized red onion.
Of course, some added protein is terrific in a bowl as well, and because I'm a sucker for spicy-seared shrimp, I've added that to my recipe here.
And since every shrimp bowl needs a scrumptious sauce or dressing to add a pop of bold flavor, I've created a zippy chimichurri vinaigrette to toss with the greens and drizzle over top of everything, making it all so vibrant and flavorful!
Here's a glance at my chimichurri shrimp bowl recipe: (or just jump to the full recipe...)
- To get started, I prepare my chimichurri vinaigrette, and set that aside to have ready.
- Next, I marinate the shrimp in some smoky spices,
- While the shrimp marinates, I cook the quinoa.
- And while the quinoa cooks, I caramelize the red onion, and set that aside as well.
- In the same pan as I caramelized the onion, I then sear the shrimp until charred and cooked through, and keep it warm.
- Before assembling the individual shrimp bowls, I add all the greens to a large bowl and toss with about half of the chimichurri vinaigrette.
- Then, to assemble each bowl, I divide the tossed greens between large, shallow bowls, then spoon over some of the warm quinoa, some black beans, halved cherry tomatoes, the caramelized onions, and finally top with the seared shrimp.
- To finish, I drizzle more of my chimichurri vinaigrette over the shrimp, then garnish each shrimp bowl with a couple of avocado slices and some cilantro.
Chimichurri Shrimp Bowl
by Ingrid Beer
This zesty chimichurri shrimp bowl is loaded with quinoa, super greens, caramelized red onion, black beans, tomato and avocado!
Yield: Serves 4
Nutrition Info: 787 calories per shrimp bowl
Prep Time: 35 minutes
Cook time: 35 minutes
Total time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Shrimp Bowl Ingredients:
- 1 ¼ to 1 ½ pounds shrimp (U12 count, about 16 to 20 pieces total), peeled but with tail left on, deveined
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ¼ teaspoon chipotle powder (optional, a bit spicy)
- Black pepper
- Avocado oil
- 1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed under cold water and drained well
- 1 ¼ cup water
- ½ teaspoon granulated onion
- ½ teaspoon granulated garlic
- 1 large red onion, quartered and sliced thinly
- 8 ounces prepackaged, mixed “super greens”
- ½ (heaping) cup black beans
- ½ (heaping cup) cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 large avocado, sliced, for garnish
- Cilantro, for garnish
Chimichurri Vinaigrette Ingredients:
- 1 small bunch cilantro, very finely chopped (about ½ cup chopped)
- 1 small bunch flat-leaf parsley, very finely chopped (about ½ cup chopped)
- 1 tablespoon fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
- 8 small garlic cloves, pressed through garlic press
- Pinch red pepper flakes
- ¼ (heaping) teaspoon salt
- Pinch black pepper
- ¼ cup red wine vinegar
- ½ cup avocado oil
- Begin by gathering and prepping all of your chimichurri vinaigrette ingredients according to the ingredient list above to have ready and organized for use.
- To prepare the chimichurri vinaigrette, add all of the ingredients to a large bowl, and using a fork, mix together until well blended. (The vinaigrette will be a bit thick, with a nice shiny look.) Set aside.
- Gather and prep all of your shrimp bowl ingredients according to the ingredient list above to have ready and organized for use.
- Add your shrimp to a large bowl, and season with the cumin, smoked paprika, chipotle powder, a couple of pinches of salt and pepper, plus a good drizzle of avocado oil. Toss to coat, and allow to marinate while you prep your quinoa and caramelize your red onion.
- To prepare your quinoa, add the 1 ¼ cups of water to a non-stick pan or pot, drizzle in some avocado oil (about 1 tablespoon), add in the granulated onion and garlic, plus some salt and pepper. Bring to a vigorous simmer, then add in the quinoa, stir, and cover. Allow the quinoa to gently simmer for about 20 minutes, or until fluffy and tender, and the water absorbed. Set aside and allow to slightly cool to room temp/warm.
- While the quinoa cooks, place a heavy bottom skillet (cast-iron is terrific) over medium-high heat, and drizzle in about 2 tablespoons of avocado oil. Once hot, add in your sliced red onion plus a pinch or two of salt and pepper, and caramelize it for 10 to 12 minutes until slightly jammy. Set aside in a bowl.
- To that same pan, add a bit more oil (about 1 tablespoon), and with the heat on medium-high, add the shrimp (work in batches, if necessary), and sear for about 3 minutes per side, or until charred and cooked through.
- To assemble your chimichurri shrimp bowls, add your super greens to a large bowl, and drizzle in about half of the chimichurri vinaigrette. Toss to combine, add a pinch or two of salt, then add the dressed greens to individual large, shallow bowls.
- Spoon over top of the greens equal amounts of the quinoa, then sprinkle over that equal amounts of the caramelized red onion, the black beans, the halved cherry tomatoes, and using a fork, gently fluff the bowl to incorporate the ingredients throughout.
- Top each bowl with a few pieces of the seared shrimp (about 4 to 5 shrimp), then add a couple of slices of avocado to each bowl, and drizzle the top of each shrimp bowl with more chimichurri vinaigrette, and garnish with cilantro leaves.
Tips & Tidbits for my Chimichurri Shrimp Bowls recipe:
- Large shrimp for succulent results: For these shrimp bowls I'm opting for shrimp that's a bit on the larger size, a U12 count shrimp, as they sear up to the perfect size and have a juicy, succulent texture. I typically will only add three of these to each shrimp bowl. But if you prefer smaller size shrimp, feel free to use medium U16 count.
- Colorful quinoa, for healthy grains: I'm a big fan of the multi-colored quinoa, but feel free to use all red or all white quinoa here. If you happen to enjoy an “ancient grain” mix, you can substitute that here, but sometimes I find the different grains take different times to cook and can be either hard or mushy, making for an inconsistent eating experience.
- Dark, leafy super greens: When preparing these shrimp bowls, I use a mix of organic, prepackaged “super greens” with baby spinach, red and green Swiss chard, tat soi, and arugula—so hearty and flavorful, and loaded with antioxidants!
- Prep these chimichurri shrimp bowls ahead: If you'd like to get a head start and prep your components the day before, you can prepare your chimichurri vinaigrette and keep that in a jar in the fridge. You can also season and marinate the shrimp, prep your quinoa, and caramelized your onion, keeping those in your fridge as well. The day you'd like to serve, you can then simply sear the shrimp, gently warm the quinoa, allow the chimichurri vinaigrette to come to room temp, and assemble the bowls.