Fuel for the Long Run: Carrot Banana Muffins

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Pre-packaged running snacks are convenient and easy—but they can be expensive and full of unwanted ingredients. That is why we are searching high and low for do-it-yourself trail meals and snacks that will save you money, give you more dietary flexibility and taste amazing. Tested by dirtbags, for dirtbags.

To participate, send your recipe and high-quality photos of prep and trail tasting to mjanssen@bigstonepub.com. Subject line: Gourmet Dirtbag

Muffins made in a ladyfinger tin to fit into your rear pocket!

Carrot Banana Muffins

These gluten-free muffins have simple ingredients, and provide loads of nutrition—plus they are delicious. With lots of nuts and fruit, these are like a baked-good version of store bought bars… which means they go well with morning coffee before the run starts, too!


2 cups almond flour

2 tsp baking soda

½ tsp salt

1 tbsp ground cinnamon

½ cup unsweetened shredded coconut

3 large eggs

3 bananas, mashed

½ cup unsalted butter, cubed and softened

2 tablespoons maple syrup or honey

1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

1 ¼ cups pitted dates

2 medium carrots

¾ cup walnuts


  1. Shred or chop the dates, walnuts and carrots and set aside (a food processor works best).
  2. Preheat oven to 325 F. Oil a muffin pan of choice with coconut oil, butter or use paper liners. The author opted for mini-muffins, but lady fingers are a great option as well!
  3. In a large bowl, mix together the almond flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and coconut. In another bowl, wisk the eggs, bananas, butter, honey and vinegar. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ones. Fold in the dates, carrots, and walnuts. Divide the batter among the muffin cups.
  4. Bake for 40 minutes, until golden brown or a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes, then turn out the muffins onto the rack and let cool to warm or room temperature.

Wrap tightly in a baggie, throw in a pocket or vest and pop one on the trail for a sugar and protein boost.

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