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Cauliflower Chickpea Shawarma Quinoa Bowl

Vegan Shawarma Bowl

  • Author: Elaine Gordon
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x
  • Diet: Vegan


These Vegan Shawarma Bowls are a plant-based spin on the classic Middle Eastern street food, chicken shawarma. Instead of wrapping everything in a pita, here we serve it overtop nutritious, fluffy quinoa and alongside sautéed veggies and roasted crispy chickpeas for added nutrients. My homemade vegan tzatziki sauce, hummus and tahini sauce all pair perfectly with this flavorful plant-based and gluten-free dish.


Units Scale


  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees and grease a half sheet rimmed baking sheet with olive oil.
  2. In a large mixing bowl add cauliflower florets, 3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, maple syrup and Homemade Shawarma Spice Mix.  Toss well so the cauliflower is evenly coated with the spices and oil.  Place florets in one even layer on the prepared baking sheet and roast on the middle rack of your oven for 40 minutes, rotating the florets halfway through.  Make sure florets are not touching or they will steam.  Remove from oven once the florets are golden brown with crispy edges.  Watch closely during the last 5 minutes to avoid burning.
  3. While the florets are roasting, prepare the sautéed onions and bell peppers.  Over medium heat, add 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil to a 12-inch cast iron skillet.  Add sliced bell peppers, sliced onions and salt and pepper to taste.  Sauté for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally until bell peppers are soft and onions have started to caramelize.  Set aside for serving.
  4. Prepare the crispy chickpeas, quinoa, tzatziki and hummus or tahini sauce.  You can prepare the quinoa tzatziki, hummus and tahini sauce ahead of time.  The crispy chickpeas are best when fresh.  I like to prepare them while the cauliflower is roasting to layer the tasks for efficiency.  You can use a toaster oven since they roast at a lower temperature.
  5. Plating: This meal makes 4 servings.  Divide 1-1.5 cups of quinoa between 4 bowls (or plates).  Divide the sautéed bell peppers and onions, cauliflower shawarma and crispy chickpeas amongst the four bowls/plates and place overtop the quinoa.  Serve with vegan homemade tzatziki sauce and homemade hummus or creamy vegan homemade tahini sauce (family-style so everyone can use however much they like).  Provide garnishes such as fresh parsley, lemon wedges and flaky sea salt.


Homemade Shawarma Spice Mix (whisk the spices together well):

1 teaspoon fine salt
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon maple sugar (or coconut sugar)
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Some traditional Shawarma spice blends contain a small amount of cloves, cayenne pepper, garlic powder and coriander.  Start with 1/4 teaspoon of each and add more if desired.  You can also just keep the basic spices above and it will still be absolutely delicious!

This recipe is adapted from Inspiralized.

  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 40
  • Category: Entree
  • Method: Oven and STovetop
  • Cuisine: Middle Eastern

Keywords: vegan shawarma bowls