There’s nothing quite as satisfying as sitting down to a tasty, home-cooked meal after a long day of training. But cooking elaborate meals isn’t exactly what we want to do when we’re dead tired. So we’re always on the lookout for quick and simple recipes that don’t take hours to prepare and pack a nutritional punch. And when we find something we like, many times we’ll double a recipe just so we can be guaranteed leftovers for another day when cooking isn’t an option. So when we first got our hands on the Feed Zone Cookbook a few months ago, we were eager to start cooking!
The book’s 150 recipes come from Allen Lim, Ph.D., sports physiologist, cycling coach, and a founder of Skratch Labs, and professional chef Biju Thomas. What’s more, these recipes have been tested on pro cyclists at the Tour de France, which sounded great to us. If these meals can sustain riders throughout the Tour, they’re definitely worth a try in our kitchen!
The book begins with a sizeable introduction by Allen Lim, including the story and science behind the recipes, tips for food timing (when to eat pre-workout, post-workout, etc.), race weight, a list of staples to keep in your kitchen, and more. From there, the book is broken up into six sections: breakfast, portables, après (think “post-workout”), dinner, desserts, and basics. The recipes we chose to create were:
- White Beans and Chicken
- Buffalo and Sweet Potato Tacos
- Turkey Lettuce Wraps
- Spiced Black Beans
The ingredients for each dish we made were very easy to come by at our local grocery store, so no trips to a specialty market was needed. This is a pretty big deal for us since we can barely find the time to make it to the store for our weekly food shopping trip, let alone going on a mission in search of exotic ingredients. Once we had our ingredients, prepping each dish was super-easy. We were able to prep and cook each one quickly and easy, and as we mentioned earlier, we did end up doubling each recipe to ensure we had leftovers ready for us the next day. Speaking of leftovers, each recipe provides a helpful approximate serving size, so you can easily determine if you will need to double the batch, or if what the recipe provides will be enough for you. What’s more, each dish was equally as good the next day (or two). So for those who like to do weekly food prepping, these recipes seemed to lend themselves well to that.
One thing to note is that the cookbook does focus a lot of dishes around rice and bread, especially the “portables” recipes. Some of us on the AG Team avoid white bread and rice, so we did have to make some substitutions. Of course some of the recipes didn’t lend themselves to substitutions, especially when it came to things like rice cakes. But most of the recipes were easily modified to meet our needs (using quinoa instead of rice, sweet potatoes rather than white, or spiralized veggies rather than pasta). If you know what ingredients work for you—and those that don’t—you can make the call on where you need to substitute (and for what).
On a whole, we were very happy with how the recipes turned out from the Feed Zone Cookbook. They were easy to prepare, delicious, and nutrient-packed with real food ingredients. We love being able to create tasty meals without spending hours in the kitchen, especially after a long training or race day. Pick up a copy for yourself from Velo Press for $24.95.