The Recovery Meal Dreams Are Made Of

By Allie Burdick | Sept. 22, 2016, 5:53 p.m. (ET)

As the weather cools, heat up your recovery with this fall favorite

Am I the only one who starts planning her post-race recovery meal during the last 30 minutes of a hard training session? In the last intense moments of a hard workout, I usually begin fantasizing about what delicious food I’m going to recover with, and this crockpot meal of turkey sausage and sweet potato stew is at the top the list come fall.

This easy to make (and modify) meal contains a whopping 21 grams of protein and 7 grams of fiber per serving and is only 351 calories with 9 grams of fat. It is nutrient dense and packs everything your working muscles need after a hard effort with the taste your senses will crave as the temperatures start to drop.

Turkey Sausage and Sweet Potato Stew

turkey sausage and sweet potato stewPrep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 8-10 hours on low so you can cook it overnight or 4-5 hours on high
Servings: 10 

Ingredients
1 1/2 pounds turkey sausage, cut into small pieces and pre-cooked on stove top
4 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch pieces (about 4 cups)
2 medium green sweet peppers cut into 1-inch pieces
2 stalks of celery, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup quick cooking tapioca
2 14 1/2-ounce cans diced tomatoes with roasted garlic, undrained
2 15-ounce cans garbanzo beans (chickpeas), rinsed and drained
2 cups reduced-sodium beef broth or homemade beef broth 

Directions
1. In a 3 1/2 to 6-quart slow cooker, combine cooked turkey sausage, sweet potatoes, sweet peppers, celery, onion and tapioca. Add undrained tomatoes, beans and broth.

2. Cover and cook on low-heat setting for 8-10 hours or on high-heat setting for 4-5 hours. Share with family and friends or freeze it and eat it all season long. It’s one of the easiest and best dishes to make for a crowd!

Nutrition Facts Per Serving: 351 calories, 9 grams total fat (2 grams saturated fat), 61 mg cholesterol, 1577 mg sodium, 45 grams carbohydrates, 7 grams fiber, 21 grams protein. 

Recipe adapted from Better Homes and Gardens Biggest Book of Soups and Stews.

Allie Burdick is an ACE certified personal trainer and fitness instructor. She has been running and competing her entire life and was recently part of Team USA in duathlon and will be competing at the 2016 USA Triathlon Age Group National Championships. Her writing has appeared in Runner's World, Women's Running and ESPNW. She blogs about triathlon and marathon training at VitaTrain4Life.com.

The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and not necessarily the practices of USA Triathlon. Before starting any new diet or exercise program, you should check with your physician and/or coach.