I’ve read a lot of cookbooks.
“Simmer your sauce in this pan while your chicken cooks in the other. Use a third pan to cook your rice, while your asparagus roasts in the oven.”
“Add a pinch of saffron, 3 bay leaves and a star anise to your organic homemade bone broth..."
Unfortunately, the large majority of us don’t have these luxuries, nor do we really want or need
them. Plus we all know the more dirty dishes there are, the more we think negatively about the cooking process.
I’ve yet to find a cookbook that’s really made for the person who really wants to learn some
basic dishes that they can knock out with minimal time and effort while keeping it healthy
As GAA athletes, most of us don’t have the time or desire to learn how to cook like a Michelin star
chef. We just want something tasty and healthy that we can throw together instead of going to the nearest deli-counter.
The following recipes offer up three easy-to-cook, tasty, healthy dishes with plenty of carbohydrates and protein, essential nutrients for the fuelling and recovery of GAA Athletes. You can also find "The Gaelic Athlete Cookbook" here: knowyourselfnutrition.com/cookbook
One-Tray Roast Chicken Dinner
Back in my university days, my house-mate and I used to come in from training, starving and wanting something that would satisfy our taste buds, while giving us the protein and carbohydrates we needed after a tough session.
We would get a full chicken, a bag of baby potatoes and some veg, throw it all on an oven tray with some spices and throw it in the oven for 90 minutes, giving us enough time to get the dirty clothes in the wash and get ourselves cleaned up.
We tucked into half a chicken and half a bag of baby potatoes each, with a nice helping of veggies.
Ingredients (2-4 servings):
Whole chicken or 4 chicken fillets or 2 chicken fillets and two chicken legs
A few springs of Thyme or 1/2 tsp of dried Thyme
1/2 - 1 tsp Chilli powder
Juice of one lemon
1kg of baby boil potatoes
1 packet of tender stem broccoli
Place your chicken or chicken fillets in the middle of the oven tray.
Sprinkle the thyme, chilli powder and lemon over the top and massage it into the chicken.
Place baby boil potatoes and carrots around the outside of the chicken and sprinkle some salt and pepper over the top.
Put in the oven for about 75-90 mins (for full chicken) or 35 minutes (for chicken fillets) at 190 degrees, adding the broccoli to the tray with about 15 minutes to go.
Make sure the chicken juices run clear and the chicken is cooked throughout.
If using chicken fillets, you may want to take the chicken fillets and broccoli out and let the potatoes cook for another 10-15 minutes. Or better yet, let the potatoes cook on their own for 20 minutes before adding the chicken and broccoli.
KYN Quick Chilli con Carne
I make this dish usually once per week. Twice if I have other people round to the house for food. It can be done in a pan or a pot as outlined below, but if you really want to bring the flavours out, it's hard to beat the slow cooker.
Ingredients (2-4 servings):
600g Mince steak
1.5 tsp Paprika
1 tsp Cumin
1/2 tsp chilli flakes
1-2 cloves garlic
2 Red Onions
1-2 tins of chopped tomatoes
1 tin of kidney beans
Mix the minced beef with the spices (paprika, chilli flakes, cumin, chopped garlic, salt, pepper).
Chop the peppers and red onions, chop some carrots in small cubes, and add to a pan or pot at medium heat, with a small amount of oil and fry until the onions have turned soft.
Add the seasoned minced beef to the pan.
When the meat is all browned, add a tin of chopped tomatoes, drained kidney beans and a splash of water and turn the heat down,
Let the mixture bubble away for about 25 minutes, or until the water has evaporated from the mixture.
Serve with some microwaveable rice and avocado, or serve with some spaghetti for a spicy bolognese!
3-ingredient Banana-Oat Pancakes
I think came across this recipe whilst looking for alternatives to the usual pancake mix, on a pancake Tuesday. But they then became a staple of my diet, when I realised that it was basically a combination of the foods I was already having for breakfast each day. If I need to get some extra calories, I 1.5x the ingredients and add some extra toppings!
Ingredients (1-2 servings):
2-3 eggs (depending on the amount of oats used)
Add eggs and a banana to a jug and blend together.
Add oats to the mixture and blend. Keep adding oats and blending until the mixture is thick enough that it’s slow to pour.
Put a small knob of butter on a medium heat pan.
Add some of the mixture to the pan and cook until the bottom is brown and then flip and do the same on the other side.
This mixture makes 2 small pancakes or one big one.
If you decide to try one of these recipes, be sure to tag me on Instagram (@knowyourselfnutrition instagram.com/knowyourselfnutrition)
Conor O'Neill, Know Yourself Nutrition
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