Jill here - you might at first glance think a meal from a vegan recipe book called "Oh She Glows" is not for you but HOLD ON just a minute!
Let me tell you why you might just love it.
Let's say you're interested in building mileage, especially on the weekends, which means that you're probably finishing your ride somewhere around lunch time or early afternoon. I bet a lot of you have to jump quickly into family time or weekend chores, after all....it can't all be about the bike!
Once you've done your immediate recovery nutrition you need a more substantial feed or you may need an easy go-to filler meal if you find you're starving again but it's too soon for dinner. A familiar scenario in our house.
This is a great recipe that satisfies all of the above because its:
main carbohydrate is sweet potato which is a delicious complex carbohydrate perfect for the next phase of glycogen replenishment post immediate recovery nutrition
main fat is natural peanut butter which is packed with mono and polyunsaturated fatty acids which are vital in so many ways when it comes to muscles recovering from and adapting to physiological stress (training)
it's nutrient dense - just look at all the colours from purple, orange, red, green!
packed with plant based proteins (chick peas, peanut butter) which means that it won't overly slow digestion down. You'll feel fed but you'll still be ready for dinner, which is more likely to contain an animal based protein. This is the best place for it as you can slow down, put your feet up and allow final muscle recovery and synthesis to occur
it's so easy and quick to make, delicious and keeps well in the fridge for 2-3 days (doesn't freeze well though)
1 tsp olive oil
1 purple onion
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 red bell pepper
1 medium - large sweet potato, peeled and diced into 1-cm pieces
2 400g cans diced tomatoes
1/3 cup or 75ml natural crunchy peanut butter (Meridian is a great brand)
1 litre vegetable broth (I use a little less as I like it more stewy than soupy)
1.5 tsp mild chilli powder
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (optional, if you like it hot...too hot for me!)
1 425g can chickpeas (drained)
2 handfuls spinach
1. In a large saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add onion & garlic, saute for 5 mins.
2. Add the red pepper and sweet potato. Add the chilli powder (and cayenne powder if using) and stir until mixed throughout. Cook for a minute to release flavour and extra micro-nutrients from the spices.
3. Add tomatoes with their juices. Raise heat and simmer uncovered for 5-10 mins. Add 1/2 tsp black pepper and a pinch of salt.
3. In a small bowl or blender, blend or whisk the peanut butter with1 cup of vegetable broth until smooth. Stir this into the saucepan along with the remaining vegetable broth.
4. Cover the pan and simmer for 20-30 mins, until sweet potato is soft.
5. If you have a blender, take out a good cupful of the stew and blend until smooth. Return to pan. This will create a smooth base.
6. Stir in the drained chickpeas and spinach in last 5 mins and heat through.
Performance nutrition is about finding recipes that meet your performance needs. It's not about adopting a style of eating (say vegan or keto) and committing to only that at the expense of your performance. That's why I use a variety of different recipes from various nutritional disciplines.
It's got to fit within your training goals, your lifestyle, eating preferences and how much time you want to spend in the kitchen.
I've gathered loads of go-to recipes over the years that meet various performance needs. Let me know what you want and I'll keep sharing.
If you're interested in learning more about how to make nutrition work for you drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org or check out our performance coaching section. Both Joe and I are available for one-on-one coaching.