Leftover dinner bowl ideas

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| Cityline.ca, Cityline.ca Staff

Taking a spin on her popular rice bowl idea from last year, Mairlyn Smith shares dinner bowl ideas using summer leftovers that are already in your fridge!

Leftover dinner bowls

Each bowl should contain four main elements:

1. Protein: Grilled steak, chicken or fish

2. Complex carbs or a starch: Cold potatoes, hulless oats, quick cook barley, pasta, etc.

3. Veggies & herbs: Leftover grilled asparagus, eggplant, zucchini, onions, peppers, grape tomatoes, celery, frozen peas, and herbs: cilantro, parsley, oregano etc.

4. Salad dressing: Homemade cold pressed canola oil with Dijon, oil and vinegar, etc.

Assembling your dinner bowl:

  • 2.5 oz of Protein
  • ½ – ¾ cup complex carbs
  • 1-3 cups veggies
  • 2 tbsp herbs
  • 1-2 tbsp salad dressing

Bowl dressing options:

Everyday House Dressing
Makes 1/2 cup (125 mL)
Serves 4 (2 tbsp each) OR 8 (1 tbsp each)

I’ve been making this dressing for the past thirty years; it’s a golden oldie. Chances are if you’re eating a salad at my house, you’re getting this one.


  • ¼ cup (50 mL) balsamic vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp. + 1 tsp. (20 mL) cold pressed canola oil or extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) grainy Dijon mustard
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) honey
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed


Whisk together all the ingredients. Can be stored up to 1 week in advance.

2 tbsp (30 mL):
Calories: 60, Total fat: 4.5 g, Sat fat: 0 g, Trans fat: 0 g, Sodium: 40 g, Barbs 5 g, Fibre: 0 g, Protein: 0 g. 


Honey Mustard Salad Dressing
Makes 1/2 cup (125 mL)
Serves 8 (1 tbsp each)

I created this for a dinner theatre fundraiser at my church. Everyone loved the recipe so much they were coming into the kitchen to write down the recipe. The only problem was the version that was posted on the wall served ninety-two, oh well, hopefully they knew math.


  • 2 tbsp (15 mL) orange juice concentrate
  • 2 tbsp (15 mL) canola oil
  • 2 tbsp (15 mL) apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tbsp (15 mL) honey
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) Dijon mustard


Whisk together in a small bowl. Serve or store in fridge for up to 2 days.

1 tbsp (15 mL):
Calories: 50, Total fat: 3.5 g, Sat fat: 0 g, Trans fat: 0 g, Sodium: 15g, Carbs 7 g, Fibre: 0 g, Protein: 0 g. 

Courtesy Mairlyn Smith