Free Iron-Rich Recipes for Runners

Nutrition // 12WBT Staff

If you’re prepping for a fun run, it’s important to get your nutrition right too! And an iron-rich diet is a crucial part of nailing your nutrition.

Load Up On Iron

You’ll need to eat red meat or other iron-rich foods at least four times a week, because iron helps build red blood cells (which carry oxygen around your body). As running breaks down those cells, it’s important to give your body enough iron to replace what you lose during training.

Try these iron-rich dishes!

Lamb With Spiced Rice


  • 2 Serves
  • 10 min prep time
  • 15 min cooking
  • 325 Cal / serve


1 pinch Saffron
1g Olive Oil Spray
1 Onion, thinly sliced
1/2 Red Capsicum, chopped
2 cloves Garlic, crushed
1/2 cup Doongara Rice
200 ml Liquid Chicken Stock
100g Lamb Loin Fillet
1 teaspoon Middle Eastern Spice Mix
2 tablespoons Low-Fat Natural Yoghurt
10g Lebanese Cucumber, finely chopped
1 tablespoon Lemon Juice
2 tablespoons Parsley, chopped
2 tablespoons Mint


  1. Combine saffron and 2 tablespoons boiling water in a small bowl, set aside for 5 minutes.
  2. Spray a small saucepan with oil and heat over medium heat. Add onion, capsicum and garlic. Cook, stirring often, for 2 minutes. Add rice and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add saffron mixture and stock. Cover and bring to a simmer, reduce heat to low and cook for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside, covered, for 10 minutes.
  3. Preheat a chargrill over medium-high heat. Coat lamb in spice mix, spray with oil and cook on chargrill, about 2 minutes each side for medium. Transfer to a plate.
  4. Combine yoghurt, cucumber, lemon juice and parsley in a small bowl. Chop half the mint and stir in.
  5. Slice lamb and place on the rice. Serve topped with yoghurt mixture and remaining mint.

Mish Tips

  • Doongara is a low GI rice. Use basmati if you can’t find it.

Beef Fillet With Roast Pumpkin, Beetroot & Spinach


  • 2 Serves
  • 15 min prep time
  • 60 min cooking
  • 272 Cal / serve

Jazz up meat-and-three-veg with sweet roasted pumpkin, beetroot and spinach with a touch of ginger.


2 Fresh Beetroot, scrubbed & trimmed
200g Pumpkin, peeled and cut into 2cm thick wedges
1g Olive Oil Spray
2 x 100g Lean Beef Fillets
3g Ginger, finely grated
160g Baby Spinach
2 tablespoons Orange Juice


1. Preheat oven to 200°C. Wrap beetroot in foil and place on a baking tray. Roast for 30 minutes.
2. Add pumpkin to tray. Spray with oil and season with freshly ground black pepper. Bake until pumpkin is light golden and tender, about 30 minutes. Slip skin off beetroot and cut into wedges.
3. Heat a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Spray steaks with oil and season with pepper. Add to pan and cook to your liking, or about 2-3 minutes each side for medium.
4. Spray a large saucepan with oil and heat over medium-high heat. Add ginger and cook, stirring, until soft, about 30 seconds. Add spinach and juice. Cook, stirring, until spinach just starts to wilt, about 1-2 minutes.
5. Divide beetroot, pumpkin, and spinach between plates. Top with steaks to serve.

Mish Tips

  • This would also be delicious served with a lean pork steak – free-range of course!

12WBT has six running programs, from Learn to Run right through to Marathon. You’ll receive expert support from our running specialists, as well as Exercise Plans tailored specifically to running, weekly Meal Plans and access to more than 900 delicious recipes.

Find out more about how 12WBT will help you achieve your goals!