Iron-rich recipe

If you’re a longtime Runner’s Kitchen reader you may remember when my friend Matt (a.k.a. No Meat Athlete) and I wrote the weekly column, Running Shorts. A lot has happened since then – Matt’s a Dad! He’s running Boston this year! AND…he wrote an e-book called No Meat Athlete’s Marathon Roadmap. I got a sneak preview and really enjoyed it. The book is a comprehensive resource for marathoners, but it’s not boring or dry like some training manuals I’ve read (ahem, Jack Daniels’ Running Formula, ahem). My favorite part? The recipes! In fact I wish there were more…In my continuing effort to save $$ and pack my own lunch, I headed to the kitchen to try out a dish.

The book is full of basic, wholesome recipes – I started off with basic rice and beans and then added a fun tropical twist.

Basic Rice and Beans (From No Meat Athlete’s Marathon Roadmap)

Ingredients (for 4 servings):

✦1 cup dry brown rice

✦1 can drained and rinsed beans, or 2 cups cooked

✦1 onion, chopped

✦1 clove garlic, minced

✦1 Tbs olive oil

Rinse the rice well and put in medium saucepan with 2 cups water and 1/4 tsp salt. Bring to boil, reduce heat to medium-low, coverfor 20-25 minutes until cooked. Remove from heat. Heat up the oil in a large pan over medium-high heat and onion for 5 minutes. Add the garlic and fry for an additional 5 minutes, less if it appears that it’s going to burn. Stir in the beans and heat through. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve with rice.

Hawaiian Beans and Rice (From No Meat Athlete’s Marathon Roadmap)

You’ll need one batch of the basic recipe above, as well as:

✦2 cups chopped red cabbage (about quarter of a head)

✦2 cups fresh baby spinach

✦2 tablespoons soy sauce

✦3/4 teaspoon smoked paprika

✦1 can sliced pineapple, juice reserved

✦1 Tbs coconut oil (I used Tropical Traditions brand)

Stir the red cabbage, 1/2 cup pineapple juice, 1 tablespoon of soy sauce, and smoked paprika into the bean and onion mixture. Cook for 5 minutes, until cabbage is cooked but still crunchy. Stir in spinach and cook for 2 more minutes, until slightly wilted. Add salt and pepper to taste. Meanwhile, melt coconut oil in pan over medium-high heat. Lay pineapple rings in pan, and sprinkle with 1tablespoon of soy sauce. Fry for 2 minutes per side, until nice and charred. Serve on top of beans and rice.

Not only was this recipe vegan and economical, it was also very nutritious! The black beans and spinach contain a good amount of iron and the vitamin-C rich pineapple aids in absorption.

I give this recipe an A- (I should have used a little more paprika/salt), but apparently one of my co-workers gave it an A+. I stashed a tupperware in the fridge the other morning and by lunch time the empty tupperware was in the sink…sans rice and beans. Who does that?? Of all the things in our communal office fridge (Fage yogurt, diet coke, etc) – who decided that my Hawaiian themed rice and beans were the least conspicious thing to steal? Ah well.

Disclaimer: Both No Meat Athlete and Tropical Traditions provided me with free samples, but I was under no obligation to review if I so chose. Nor was I under any obligation to write a positive review or sponsor a product giveaway in return for the free product.

Not too much to report on the running front – I’ve been pretty fatigued this week, so I’ve kept it really easy. I ran 3 miles on both Monday and Tuesday and 7 miles this morning (Wednesday). I have a fun event planned for Sunday (a relay race with some friends!), so my mileage needs to be juggled around a bit this week. I think I’m going to attempt a long run on Friday morning – stay tuned for how that goes, heh.

Ever had something of yours taken from a communal fridge? Was it more or less exciting than homemade rice & beans??

  • perfect timing with this post for me 🙂 and i love the hawaiian edge to it!

    i’ve taken apples and yogurts from the fridge before. but only after they’ve been sitting there for a day or two and it’s clear that nobody is eating them. there’s nothing terribly exciting in the clinic fridge though…

  • I will definitely be checking out this e-book! I need some iron in my life!

  • OMG! I would have walked around to try and figure out who did it, and then posted a mean note on the fridge. I am THAT GIRL. Because if you mess with my food, I get pissed. And that looks so delicious too!

    Another 1 – 1.5 weeks and I’m hoping to try out the Achilles…I miss you running buddy!!

  • Seriously who does that?? Someone stole my brown-bagged sandwich and fruit once, grrrr.

    Totally reminds me of that Friends episode with Ross’s sandwich, though. Haha


    I had a cake in the fridge for my students and when I pulled it out, someone had cut a piece out of it!!! I had to cut the cake up ahead of time so the kids didn’t think I snagged a piece at recess!

  • That would drive me nuts if someone stole my lunch!! Insane.
    I love rice and beans – it is one of my favorite quick and easy dinners! I like it with cheese and salsa, but the pineapple version sounds awesome too. I should try some different takes on it!

  • WHAT the CRAP?! Ballsy, someone just swiped it and had the gall to leave the empty tupperware for you to clean? Sounds like it’s time for a passive aggressive note on the fridge . . . “Dear person who thinks this office is run by their mother and never learned to grow up…”

    I really appreciate the tips on iron-rich meals. I’m working on this as a somewhat new pescatarian.

    I have a funny story. . . I briefly had a roommate who was this older guy with a full time job (I was 22, he was like 33?) and his fridge and cupboard were stocked like it was costco. He told me “you are welcome to have any of this”, and I believed him because it looked like he never made a dent in it. Well, one day, he left ME a passive aggressive note about eating his food. I think I had taken like 2 reeses and a plate-ful of Alfredo. Ooooh, well.

  • Wow! I personally love red meat…well any meat really, but I would definitely give this recipe a go. Always looking for ways to up the iron!
    Great read.

  • Confession: at my first job when I was 16 or so I had no idea that the soda in the communal fridge was NOT communal. I thought it was SWEET that we had all the Diet Coke we wanted when that 3pm nap-time feeling came around. I was SO embarrassed when one of the other employees called me out. Whoops! However, I’m assuming you don’t have clueless teenagers in your office…how rude 😉

  • Yep – a big sack of coffee that was pricier than what I usually buy, within a week of when I bought it. So much for hiding it in the back of the fridge. 🙁 Sorry about your beans and rice incident.

  • I love any recipe with pineapple, and I have an excess of black beans I bought from Costco so this recipe is perfect 🙂

    Our office actually has a weird food thief– they don’t take the ‘easy’ items like yogurts, sodas, etc. but rather eat bites out of people’s leftovers. Really bizarre. Sorry your food was stolen 🙁

  • Kelly

    That is so rude!!! You don’t take someone else’s…ever! If you didn’t bring it don’t eat it. Who does that??

  • Mmm the tropical meal sounds so good! I love easily changing up a standard meal with fresh add ins like pineapple and cabbage.

  • Heather

    At least they left you the tupperwear! I had someone steal the whole entire thing – food + container! I would love to know what is going through these people’s heads!

  • J

    I cannot believe some one ate it out of the fridge!! That looks so good! I love anything with beans and/or pineapple!

  • i love that matt! he seriously is so motivated – i don’t know how he does it! and i want those hawaiian rice and beans…NOW!