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4.42 from 62 votes

Morning Grain Bowls

Leftover cooked grains are a great way to start the day—and quick, too! If you don’t have leftover grains, cook up a pot of your favorite grain the day before and you’ll have the start of something good in the morning.
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4 people


  • 3 cups cooked whole grains (ex: brown rice, quinoa, freekeh, oats)
  • 3/4 cup cannelini beans mashed
  • 2 cups almond milk
  • 3 tablespoons ground flaxseeds
  • 1 1-inch piece turmeric (or 1 tsp ground)
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ginger grated (optional)
  • 1 cup berries fresh or frozen
  • 1 ripe banana sliced
  • 4 tablespoons date syrup (optional)


  • In a microwave-safe bowl, combine the cooked grains, beans, Almond Milk, flax-seeds, turmeric, and ginger (if using). Mix well. Microwave for 2 to 3 minutes, or until warm but not too hot. Divide the grain mixture among four bowls. Top each serving with 1⁄4 cup of the berries and one-quarter of the sliced banana. Drizzle each serving with 1 tablespoon of Date Syrup, if desired.

61 responses to “Morning Grain Bowls

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    1. How can I eat this on a Candidas problem that I have suffro more than 10 year when you not supposed to eat any sweet.

          1. For years we have pressure cooked black beans, lentils, and black rice as our cereal base, have no intention to change to cannellini beans. Each is served:
            3/4 cup beans/lentil/black rice plus 1/4 cup cooked steel cut oats,
            1 Tbs ground flax seed,
            seven whole pitted dates,
            6 walnuts,
            and 1 cup mixed (frozen) berries. We haven’t done the banana thing yet but may add.

        1. I think has decided not to give nutritional breakdowns for their daily recipes. I,too, would like to see the nutritional breakdowns. Why not?

          1. If you eat a varied, mainly whole food, plant-based diet without oil then you don’t need to worry about macros. You will be getting enough nutrients and a good balance of carbs, fibre, protein etc. The preoccupation with nutritional breakdown stems from the diet industry and the meat and dairy industries trying to convince us that we need more protein, low fat, no sugar blah, blah, blah. Just “Eat real food, not too much, mainly plants”.

    1. Make some oat milk, whizz up oats and water, put through a sieve and bingo – oat milk. You can do the same with hemp seeds as well.

    2. Any nut/bean/grain milk. The recipes are made with two important goals. The first is taste/texture etc so you actually want to eat it and the second is hitting nutrient/mineral/antioxidants etc target intakes. Depending on what you and your daughter are prioritising for this recipe pick a substitute that ether hits your nutrient intake the best for that day or whatever tastes the best.

    1. Recipe doesn’t call for them or seeds but add them if you want. Raw is best. Dehydrating/dry roasting on low temps is next. Go to this site’s search function and look up nuts and or seeds and you’ll find all his videos and info on them. There’s thousands of videos you can search on any topic here. If you can’t find it google it just use a credible website.

  1. I made it for my breakfast just now. I made mine with quino, it’s a very good recipe! But I ate 2 servings. One wasn’t enough..

  2. Hi, I am a big fun of Michael Greger and his approach to diet what I strongly promote to all my friends and family around the world, even buying the books for them.
    But I have a problem with promoting microwave as well as in books or available recipes. What I read/heard, and it was apparently scientifically proven, that the microwaves kills nutrition.
    What is your opinion Michael?
    Greetings from the Netherlands, although I am Polish :)

  3. He doesn’t mention adding a dash of black pepper to boost the health effects of the quarter teaspoon of turmeric per serving. Or four dashes of black pepper to cover the full teaspoon in the 4-serving recipe. Maybe too much information? from the king of information?

      1. It actually needs to be freshly ground black pepper. Tumeric will go thru your system very quickly. Piperine is in black pepper and is only available when freshly ground as it dissipates quickly. Piperine makes the Tumeric stay in your body longer so it can do it’s good work, eliminating inflammation, etc. Me and my family (including our dogs) take something called ‘golden paste’ twice a day. It’s Tumeric based and is a powerful anti-inflammatory. The ingredients are Tumeric powder, freshly ground black pepper, virgin olive oil (you can also use coconut oil) and water.

        1. What is the scientific basis for claiming that only freshly ground peppercorns will augment the bio-availability of Curcumin? Please provide a reference paper. Dr. Greger has not mentioned anything regarding the use of freshly ground pepper versus regular tore-bought bottled black pepper.

  4. How do you make raw almond butter? I believe The Whole Foods Market near me only uses roasted almonds for their fresh-made almond butter machine.

    1. You can add the raw almonds to a food processor, or if soak them first to remove enzyme inhibitors, and then dry, before processing.
      Trader Joe’s has raw almond butter though.

    1. I think that ex doesn’t mean excluding quinoa
      More likely it is example quinoa, oats etc
      Hope that helps.
      Nutritional values will depend on which ingredients you choose such as which grain, non-dairy milk and berries. I doubt it’s practical to give nutritional values for all combinations, but you can work it out easily on a nutritional app. I believe there are lots around but I can’t recomm which to use.

      1. is one of the free nutrition apps/websites but it still requires the number of servings and serving size before it will calculate values.

        1. After I commented, I noticed the servings listed as 4. That seems like a lot for 3 cups of grains. Usually a serving size is a 1/2 cup of dry oatmeal, but it might differ by grain.

  5. Please, please, please, start adding nutritional information for the recipes-if we change them, that is up to us, but please include the nutritional information for the recipe posted. Thank you.

  6. Cannellini beans are “cousins” to great northerns / white kidney and more distantly flagolet / white navy beans. Garbanzo beans have a shape, color, and taste that would never be confused with cannellini beans. Both are delicious though in their own way.

    Regarding the safety of using microwave ovens, I’ve written in other threads about the physics behind the mechanism of microwaves warming foods that contain oil / water.

    From the Wikipedia microwave oven page:

    “The radiation produced by a microwave oven is *non-ionizing* (emphasis added). It therefore does not have the cancer risks associated with ionizing radiation such as X-rays and high-energy particles. Long-term rodent studies to assess cancer risk have so far failed to identify any carcinogenicity from 2.45 GHz microwave radiation even with chronic exposure levels (i.e. large fraction of life span) far larger than humans are likely to encounter from any leaking ovens.[64][65] However, with the oven door open, the radiation may cause damage by heating. Every microwave oven sold has a protective interlock so that *it cannot be run* (emphasis added) when the door is open or improperly latched.

    People freak out when the hear the scientific word radiation because they don’t understand that there are different kinds of and different energy levels of radiation. It’s like deciding because some snakes are venomous, all snakes are dangerous. Next time you turn on a light bulb, you are being exposed to another kind of non-ionizing radiation. It’s dismaying the extent of scientific misinformation/misunderstanding that surrounds this phenomenon.

    People who won’t use a microwave oven will use a pressure cooker that superheats steam to temperatures that are far more dangerous than the boiling point of water. Go figure.

    All I can say is that at least the extra-caution only prevents the use of a convenience and causes no harm beyond spreading scientific misinformation

    1. Ralph Rhineau, right! I think if people don’t want to use a microwave, fine. But also don’t ever get an x-ray again either!!!

      And I think they don’t include nutritional information because most people who eat Whole Foods don’t care about that information. They know they are eating whole and healthy foods and that’s what matters. I haven’t cared about a calorie in over 2 years! Not important.

      1. Agreed. Just look up the studies which show not only is it safe but it preserves nutrients almost as well as steaming. Let’s not add yet more barriers and rules to eating healthy. Just do the best you can with what you have a don’t stress so much or overthink the details. Read Dr Colin Campbell’s ‘Whole’. How such a simple recipe suggestion could trigger such confusion and debate is crazy and funny…missed the point and taking it far too serious, ie if you don’t want to eat Italian beans don’t but they’re good for calcium or sub them if not on hand. As Jane Esselstyn says plant strong not plant perfect! Just eat whole food, mostly (ideally ALL) plants and not too much! -M. Pollan

  7. I am just starting to try to eat more fruits and vegetables and find my stomach is misbehaving–gas and diarrhea. Is this normal when first starting this way of eating?

    1. Hi Gail. In your situation, I would first check to see if I’m eating too fast (not swallowing before the food becomes watery in the mouth; i.e., swallowing partially saliva-processed food), eating too much, multiplexing while eating, or not just being calmly right here with my food.
      Unfortunately, there are too many doctors who do not ask these and similar questions before reaching for their prescription pads. . . –it took me so long to finally realize this. I hope it’s helpful for you.

  8. I am just starting to add more fruits and vegetables to my diet and my stomach is complaining–gas and diarrhea. Is this normal? And what can I do to avoid it?

  9. Considering the digestion times for the components of this meal: fruits (simple carbs so less then 30 min) … nuts (fat/ protein) so around 3 hrs…then adding the complex carbs (beans, grains) … i wonder if the combination is okay? Fruits will ferment in the stomach by the time the fats get processed…so may the grains…And also, isnt it too much for breakfast? Body is still in “detox’ phase until 12 pm considering the circadian cycle. Isn’t this too heavy on liver? Don’ get me wrong. I love the receipe! An year ago I would just make it and devore it! I guess I am reading too much latetly and can’t make good sense of everything i read so now i am worried about everything. Please help bring some light to this so I stop worrying and start eating.

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