Loving the BITE: Curry Coconut Shrimp

You’re never too old to learn something new.  Although I have been trained, and you have likely been taught, to avoid saturated fats as much as possible, I believe we’ve all been a little misled.  During the last 15 months, I stripped my education down to the bare bones to study metabolism, fat loss, and sports nutrition with a clean slate and new, open-minded perspective.  Along the way, I found one saturated fat that should be incorporated into most every cyclist’s diet.  And, it adds great flavor to this week’s recipe:

Recipe of the week:  Curry Coconut Shrimp

Ingredients (per serving):

  • 6 oz. shrimp
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin coconut oil
  • salt/pepper
  • 2 Tbsp chopped onion
  • 2 Tbsp chopped red bell pepper
  • 1 mince garlic clove
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • ½ tsp coriander
  • ¼ tsp curry powder
  • ¼ cup coconut milk
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1/8-1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • ½ Tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 Tbsp cilantro
  • 2 Tbsp raw coconut flakes/meat


Curry Coconut Shrimp: Per person, heat 1 Tbsp coconut oil in large, nonstick saucepan over medium heat. Sauté 2 Tablespoon chopped onion, 2 Tablespoon chopped red bell pepper, and ½ minced garlic clove until vegetables begin to soften, about 3 minutes.  Season with ½ teaspoon cumin, ½ teaspoon coriander, and ¼ teaspoon curry powder. Cook for 1 additional minute. Stir in ¼ cup coconut milk, 1 tsp honey (or 1 pinch) and 1/8-1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer, uncovered for 2 minutes.  Stir in 6 oz. shrimp, and increase heat to medium-high. Cook and stir until shrimp is cooked through, about 4 minutes. In a small bowl, combine ½ Tablespoon cornstarch with ½ Tablespoon water. Stir into shrimp mixture, and cook until sauce has thickened, about 1 minute. Stir in 1 Tablespoon cilantro and 2 Tablespoon raw coconut flakes, and remove from heat.  If you’re not a shrimp lover, or want to mix it up, try the same recipe with chicken, veggies, and/or tofu.  Enjoy!


This week, I’m extremely excited to highlight Extra Virgin Coconut Oil.  It’s become one of my favorite ingredients in both Daily and Training Nutrition.  And, it’s gaining steam in Western countries as a metabolism-boosting, bacteria-fighting, health-promoting fat.  Eastern countries have traditionally considered it a healthy food.  And, yet, it’s a saturated fat (gasp)!

If you’ve followed the Food Guide Pyramid and most of the nutrition recommendations in America over the past 50 years, you KNOW you should avoid saturated fats, right?  You bet your spandex.  After all, they increase bad cholesterol, clog your arteries and generally promote disease.  Well, after a long time coming in my own career, and somewhat of a mid-career crisis, I now know this to be wrong.  “Saturated fats are villains” has been drilled into me as a student and as a professional.  But, it simply hasn’t been based on science.  In fact, a major review this year of most all significant saturated fat research has shown little correlation with them, cholesterol, and/or and disease.  And, when it comes to the specific fats in natural coconut oil, it couldn’t be further from the truth.

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