These hearty, vegan Cuban bowls are made with rice, sweet potatoes, black beans, tostones (plantains) and dairy-free, creamy avocado ranch dressing!
This post is sponsored by Califia Farms. All opinions are my own.
I come from a family where if the dish doesn’t have meat or rice in it, it’s not a complete meal. But here’s the thing. Sometimes I don’t feel like eating meat. Sometimes, you prefer to have everything but the meat with a delicious sauce. On days like that, THIS vegan Cuban bowl is what I have my heart set on.
This simple yet hearty Vegan Cuban Bowl is made with white rice, sweet potatoes, black beans, tostones, and diced avocado. As if that wasn’t enough, I drizzled some homemade dairy-free avocado ranch dressing on top, made with Califia’s Unsweetened Almondmilk (soy-free, dairy-free, gluten-free, carrageenan-free, non-GMO, kosher, vegan, and BPA-free!).
SO GOOD! The beauty of these bowls is that they are fully customizable. Want quinoa instead of rice? Go for it! Prefer sweet plantains over tostones? Head over here for the recipe. Bottom line: Sorry mom but dinner is meatless today! At least, there’s rice. ;)
Here’s how I brought this recipe to life.
How to Make Vegan Cuban Bowls
First things first, you make the avocado ranch dressing. I blended all the ingredients in a food processor and the result was a creamy, herby, tangy, bright flavored dressing with semi-thick consistency. If you prefer a thinner consistency, you can stir in a teaspoon of water.
Next up, I made the sweet potatoes on the stove. You can easily make them in the oven but guess what? I live in Miami and it was just way too hot to preheat an oven today. On a nonstick pan, I heated up some olive oil and cooked the sweet potatoes covered until tender. Takes about 10 minutes on the stove. Just make sure the sweet potatoes are diced small and evenly so it cooks fast.
Lastly, I made the tostones in the same nonstick pan using avocado oil. You can use coconut oil, if you prefer, or even a mixture of both. Making tostones is not hard. Just cut the plantain in 2″ thick sliced and fry them for about 5 minutes total on all sides. They will turn golden yellow. Careful not to burn them.
Remove the plantains and drain on paper towels to absorb the excess oil. Using a plantain press or a paper towel folded over, smash the plantains to about 1/2 inch thick. Fry the now smashed plantains for about 5 minutes in the same skillet, until crisp and golden on both sides. Remove and drain on paper towels. Don’t forget to sprinkle them with salt!
Once it’s time to assemble bowls, make sure to rinse your black beans, grab some cooked rice (or quinoa), and dice up that avocado. This recipe is perfect for meal prep or even to make for a crowd.
Can’t wait for you guys to make it!
Interested in snagging up some Califia Unsweetened Almond Milk for yourself? Click here to shop and use code SASSYSPOONxCALIFIA for 15% off + free shipping on your order!
Dairy-Free Avocado Ranch Dressing
- 1/2 cup Califia Farms Unsweetened Almond Milk
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- 1 medium ripe avocado
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 teaspoon dried dill
- 1 teaspoon dried chives
- 2 teaspoons fresh parsley, chopped
- Salt + pepper to taste
Vegan Cuban Bowls
- 1/3 cup avocado oil, divided
- 1 large sweet potato, diced small
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 green plantain, peeled and sliced in 2” slices
- 1 cup cooked rice or quinoa
- 1 can black beans, (15 oz) drained and rinsed
- 1 medium ripe avocado, diced
- Salt + pepper to taste
- Make the dressing. To a food processor, add Califia Farms Unsweetened Almond Milk and lime juice. Allow to settle for 30 seconds.
- Add avocado, garlic, dried dill, dried chives, fresh parsley, salt + pepper to taste. Pulse until blended and smooth. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. If the dressing is too thick for your liking, you can thin it out by whisking a teaspoon of water at a time until desired consistency. Set aside.
- In a nonstick skillet, heat 1 tablespoon avocado oil at medium heat. Add diced sweet potatoes, smoked paprika, salt and pepper. Cover and cook for 8-10 minutes until they have softened and are cooked. Covering the skillet with a lid or another skillet will create steam which will cook the sweet potatoes faster. Transfer to a plate.
- In a medium deep nonstick skillet, heat remaining avocado oil over medium-high heat. Fry the thick plantain slices for about 5 minutes. Remove and drain on paper towels to absorb the excess oil. Using a plantain press or a paper towel folded over, smash the plantains to about 1/2 inch thick. Fry the now smashed plantains for about 5 minutes in the same skillet, until golden brown on both sides. Remove and drain on paper towels. Sprinkle with salt. (You can reuse the olive oil, if you’d like, so no need to discard.)
- Assemble your bowl by evenly dividing sweet potatoes, plantains, rice, black beans and diced avocado. Drizzle with avocado ranch and serve. Enjoy!
Thank you Califia Farms for sponsoring this post and a HUGE thank you to all the readers of this blog for all your support! xo