Cinnamon Sweet Potato Chickpea Salad



The changing of the seasons typically coincide with changes in my workout schedules.

As the temperature dropped over the past few weeks, I started to shift my outdoor runs to the lunch hour. By the time midday strikes, the temperature has usually warmed up by 7-10 degrees Celsius which is substantial when you are running outdoors!

For example, when I got up this morning it was –3C (26F) and by noon it had warmed up to 9C (48F). As much as I love getting my workout done with in the morning, during the Fall season, I prefer to run outside after it warms up. I do not like the cold, despite being a former Winter Endurance Athlete. ;)


My lunchtime workouts have left me with the big ‘before or after’ question regarding the timing of my lunch: Do I eat lunch before my run or do I eat after my run?

I have been experimenting with eating lunch before or after my run and I have found that when I eat my lunch  30-45 minutes before my run, I have much more energy than if I wait to eat until after. Of course, that makes total sense, but I was almost certain I would get running cramps after eating, but that hasn’t been the case. Sometimes I also ‘split up’ my lunch and have half before my workout and half after. This seems to work well too.

After yesterday’s awesome Avocado-Lime Black Bean Salad, I was inspired yet again to mix it up for lunch. I wanted something fairly light, yet still energizing for my run and this Cinnamon Spice Sweet Potato Chickpea Salad was born…


Cinnamon Spice Sweet Potato Chickpea Salad

A hybrid between raking the leaves in the Fall and sipping a margarita on a tropical beach. Somehow, the flavours of cinnamon and Coconut oil just pair together so wonderfully. Don’t forget the sea salt too; it really makes the flavours pop in this recipe.


  • 1 large sweet potato, peeled and chopped into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1.5 cups cooked chickpeas
  • 1 small onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil, divided


Directions: Preheat oven to 425F and line a baking sheet with parchment or a non-stick liner. Peel and chop sweet potato. In a large bowl, add the cooked chickpeas, uncooked sweet potato, chopped onion, cinnamon, salt, and 1/2 tbsp coconut oil. Mix well. Spread onto prepared baking sheet and place in the oven at 425F for 36-40 minutes. Remove from oven and place into a large bowl. Add the remaining 1/2 tbsp coconut oil and stir well to coat. Add additional sea salt if preferred. Serves 1-2.

I don’t know about you, but 6 ingredient recipes make me happy. Very, very happy.


[Note the onion is missing and I couldn’t fit all the chickpeas and sweet potato on the board so I just grabbed a handful ‘for show’!]

Mix the above ingredients together in a bowl and spread out onto a baking sheet.


It smells like love, puppies, and rainbows mixed with a tropical beach.


Bake for 36-40 minutes at 425F.


Deeply inhale and fill your lungs with the sweet cinnamon and coconut aroma.

Place salad back into a bowl and mix in more coconut oil as it is a bit dry when it comes out of the oven. Sprinkle with more sea salt and serve immediately!


When I made this, I assumed it was a two-serving recipe, but I loved it so much I ate the whole damn thing!


After all, I needed my pre-run fuel. ;)


And boy did I ever have energy on today’s run. Granted, I had to wear my running jacket + gloves to feel *sorta* warm, but it was refreshing once my body warmed up.


After about 30 minutes of digesting, I hit the road.

Side note: I haven’t been blogging about all of my exercise lately, but I have been running on average 19-25 miles per week, with 1-2 complete rest days per week. Right now, I consider myself to be in ‘maintenance mode’; I am not presently training for any races, but I am still running consistently to keep up my ‘base’.

Side Note #2: Remember when I broke my second iPod Shuffle by putting it in the washing machine? Well, I am proud to say that I have been running for about 4-5 weeks now with absolutely NO music and I don’t even miss it much anymore! I never thought I could get used to running without music, but here I am. I find that I get more thinking done too.

The run:

  • Distance: 4.16 miles
  • Time: 34:10 mins


A delicious snack followed…Healthy Cookie Bites! Aka: Oatmeal in cookie form. ;)


Now that Fall is here and Winter is quickly approaching, do you change up your workouts with the seasons or the time of day that you workout? Do you move inside, put on workout DVD’s, hit the gym, or just bundle up?

[As I typed this post, a notification popped up on my computer telling me that daylight Saving Time ends this weekend….doh!!]

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{ 117 comments… read them below or add one }

Amanda (Eating Up) November 3, 2010

Mmm that looks delicious! It almost makes me want to lick my computer screen!


Jessica @ How Sweet It Is November 3, 2010

Running with no music?! I am so impressed! Don’t think I could do that. Since I don’t workout outside, my workouts don’t change much. I still work out first thing in the early morn because I like how it sets up my day!


Angela (Oh She Glows) November 3, 2010

I didn’t think I could do it either!


Leanne @ Simplicitlee November 4, 2010

Working out in the am. is the best! Today is day one of me getting back into it, but I know soon ill look forward to it!

I love getting home from work and relaxing with my family knowing ive already sweated it up 9-10 hours ago :)


Lana November 3, 2010

That combinations looks heavenly. Chickpeas and sweet potatoes are something I always have on hand…Thanks for the fabulous idea!!


Hope November 3, 2010

Oh wow, Chickpeas AND Sweet Potato….Yum!!
We’re heading into Summer in NZ so I’m the opposite – can’t wait to get outdoors and see some sunlight! In winter I hog the garage outside with my boxing bag, cross-trainer and rowing machine..poor hubby has to keep the car outside! lol


Holly @ couchpotatoathlete November 3, 2010

I usually work out indoors, so the weather change isn’t too big of a deal. But I do prefer to run in the springtime when it is somewhat cool in the morning but with enough sunshine to keep me warm :)

I love this salad that you made — and it looks especially “fall like” with the twig spoon!


Heather (Heather's Dish) November 3, 2010

please send these by the dozen to colorado, STAT! :)


Lisa November 3, 2010

Your posts always invoke the seasons. I love it.


Ali W November 3, 2010

I stopped running with music too and I totally love it! At first I thought it would be totally impossible, but now I don’t even consider grabbing my Ipod unless I end up going to the gym. Normally when winter comes around I head right for the gym, but now that I am training for a few hilly winter races I really need to work on running outside despite colder temps. So far its been fun but we’ll see how I feel once things really get cold :)


Angela (Oh She Glows) November 3, 2010

haha you took the words right out of my mouth regarding the cold. I keep saying to myself ‘oh this isn’t so bad, I can run outside all winter’ and then I realize it is 8C and winter is brutally cold and also icy. I guess I will just run outdoors as long as I safely can!


kate November 3, 2010

First off, that salad is beyond amazing.
Secondly, I’d stab my eyeballs out if I had to run without music. Honestly, not sure I could accomplish it? Clearly why you are the big time runner and I’m a little slogger (slow-jogger);)
Thirdly, the cold and I do not agree. I have been running inside since October 1st. Love my treadmill. Love, love, love it!
Love your blog too


Estela @ Weekly Bite November 3, 2010

I used to rely on music during my runs! After my daughter was born that completely changed :)

I still love running to music, but I also enjoy quieting my mind :)


Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat November 3, 2010

I’m a gym-goer year round, so the change of seasons doesn’t change my routines much – apart from the fact that there are just NO outdoor ones at all now. I wish I’d seen this recipe before I made dinner tonight!!


Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) November 3, 2010

“running for about 4-5 weeks now with absolutely NO music and I don’t even miss it much anymore! I never thought I could get used to running without music, but here I am. I find that I get more thinking done too.”

I was the victim of violent crime and part of it, I am convinced, started b/c I was being followed on my runs in a big city but was too tuned out to notice. I ran with my headphones and got so into the music, I forgot about the world. So, I have spent the past nearly 10 years running without any music. I dont do treadmills, so it’s only outdoor running for me and I think it’s GREAT that you’re going without music.

I think you get wayyyyy more thinking done, too :)

And the recipe, looks stellar!

The pics of you as a little girl…that was my childhood: tons of snow! I grew up in Minnesota. Go figure that I am living in San Diego and it’s 95F today! Total indian summer!!!



Pam November 3, 2010

(I was in Balboa Park today Averie and thought of you! Wasn’t the 95 degree day killer?)

This recipe is an awesome variation on the same ol Brendan Brazier yam fries I’ve been stuck on. Can’t wait to try this!


Angela (Oh She Glows) November 4, 2010

I do feel more safe without the music…funny you should mention that. And of course I always carry pepper spray b/c I just feel better with it.


Marisa @ Loser for Life November 3, 2010

What an awesome flavor combo, Angela! I could pretty much eat chickpeas with anything! LOVE!

Boo to winter :(


Nicole (Picky Nicky) November 3, 2010

It’s amazing how you throw things together so quickly and they come out so fabulous!
I’m with you on the supposed-to-serve-2-but-I-ate-the-whole-thing ;)


Kristina @ spabettie November 3, 2010

I LOVE running with no music. (actually I am a scaredy cat and NEED to be able to HEAR outside…)



Maddie November 3, 2010

Yum! Sweet potatoes and chickpeas are both one of my favorite foods :) Congrats on running without music! That’s hard to do. During the winter months it gets dark so early that I have to ride my bike/run earlier or just go to the gym if it gets too cold.


chelsey @ clean eating chelsey November 3, 2010

That chickpea salad looks great! Three times in the past week, I have gotten up to go work out (4:30), have gotten dressed, and then gotten right back in bed because I just couldn’t do it.


Charlie November 3, 2010

That looks delicious! Now I have nice lunch ideas :).


Lisa (bakebikeblog) November 3, 2010

What a tasty lunch!!! And you are one speedy runner!!!


Tracey @ I'm Not Superhuman November 3, 2010

That looks great. Take out the onions (which I hate anyway) and it could almost be dessert!


Mary Ann November 3, 2010

That salad looks good! But those leprechauns never told me that rainbows smell good….whatever. How do you think this would travel to relative’s for Thanksgiving? We will be in the midst of moving (aaugh!) during Thanksgiving, and I need make-ahead vegan dishes. Thanks for all of your great recipes. Tis the season for sweet potatoes, pumpkin and oatmeal.


Becky November 3, 2010

Your sweet potato salad looks wonderful!! I am just started training for a 10k in the summer, so I am very excited. I have been running for almost two years, but now I am taking it to the next level. I was wondering if you also do strength training during the “off” season? I too have started running without an Ipod, on the advice of my trainer, because he wants me to listen to my breathe and if I have a lot of heel slapping which I do do a lot of heel slapping. Also I wanted to ask you if you have ever ran in bare feet? I am going to be getting the 5 finger toed shoes.

Also I run at 5:30am, and I live in the Northeast, and when i ran yesterday morning, my lovely husband woke me up and told me it was 28 degrees out…brrrr! But it was great once I started running!!


Angela (Oh She Glows) November 4, 2010

I want to start up strength training again…it has been too long!


Emily Elizabeth @ Kisses for Breakfast November 3, 2010

I don’t remember why I stopped bringing my ipod with me (probably needed to be charged) but I don’t miss it at all and also feel like I get my best thinking done when I’m running. I love your description of the chickpea salad – sounds delicious! I’m all about a short ingredient list too!


Jazz November 3, 2010

Here in SK we had our first snow storm a few weeks ago, so I ordered some icespikes for my shoes.. I’m just not sure I’m brave enough to run in the cold cold ( below -10).

I also never listen to music when I run… I like to know what’s going on around me and it lets me think!


Alina @ Duty Free Foodie November 3, 2010

I hit the gym more … AND start downhill skiing! (otherwise known as the Best Thing About Winter)


Tanya @ Vegan Faith November 3, 2010

Usually during the winter I take my workouts indoors (despite living in NC where it only gets as cold as it is by you now!) But I am a wimp. However, this year I am training for a marathon in January and am forcing myself to stay outdoors. It has been difficult! I haven’t ran with music in almost 2 years and it is liberating! Great job!


Angela (Oh She Glows) November 4, 2010

Wow that is amazing. I live in a rural area where there are lots of trucks on the roads so it really isn’t safe for me to run in the winter. I wished I lived in a more ‘neighbourhood’ type place at times.


Camille @ La Bella Vita November 3, 2010

Your wooden spoon is to die for! Thanks for always posting creative alternative recipes.


Kierstan @ Life {and running} in Iowa November 3, 2010

I have been running without my iPod as well lately and I am really loving it! I think I actually run faster without it. I do still have it on me during my longer runs – but rarely turn it on. We’ll see if I end up using it at my marathon in 2 weeks…


Clare @ Fitting It All In November 3, 2010

Once again, I wish I liked coconut! Any oil substitution suggestions?

And as much as I’d like to say I’m going to move my workouts indoors, I think I’m going to start training for a marathon! So cold, dark, outdoor runs it is!


Camille November 3, 2010

I’m not a huge carrot fan, but switch the carrots for some butternut squash and I’m on board :)


Angela (Oh She Glows) November 4, 2010

Its sweet potato, hehe :)


cyndie November 3, 2010

I always have to have a pre-workout snack. Always. Otherwise, I inevitably hit a WALL during my workout and then have to stop for sustenance anyways :)


Erika @ Health and Happiness in LA November 3, 2010

Mmmmm sweet potatoes and chickpeas are an incredible combination, roasted or in soup.


Candice @ ChiaSeedMe November 3, 2010

Yay for running without music! The same thing happened to me – I used to feel like I literally could not go run without my iPod, but then I lost it (temporarily) and had no choice. I ended up really enjoying the silence!

I used to run outside even in the cold, but this year I started going to the gym right when it go cold, and I haven’t minded it too much. It’s been kind of nice to mix things up!


Savannah P November 3, 2010

I haven’t run with music for quite some time and I find it really refreshing – it’s almost a meditative experience!
As for this recipe – bookmarked!!! I almost always have all six ingredients on hand and recipes this simple make my day. Thanks as always for what promises to be a delish dinner in the near future!


¡Yo Soy Liz! November 3, 2010

I am also super impressed that you have been running without music. Once my iPod died in the middle of my run and I immediately turned around. I just can’t do it! But maybe I should give it a shot!


Amanda Davis November 3, 2010

Due to my schedule I don’t have the flexibility to run unless I wait until night so I’ve been maintaining my 6 am runs and just bundling up. I’m really looking forward to daylight savings this weekend so I might have a little light to keep me company.


carri z. November 3, 2010


we are food twinsies today.
i make those
101 cookbook cookies all the TIME!
as well as a
chickpea/sweet potato dish!
i use trade joe’s curry
simmer sause and add
(cooked) chopped frozen spinach
and serve over brown rice.

sooo gooooood.

stay warm!


Andrea November 3, 2010

I have just switched running from the am to lunchtime as well! I live in Ontario and had the exact same weather pattern as you today, so when I ran around 2:00 it wasn’t too cold outside. But I still wore a flannel jacket!


Jenn @ LiveWellFitNow November 3, 2010

I’ve recently taken up running with no music and I LOVE IT! Who knew! I surely didn’t!


Ashley Rowell November 3, 2010

Once, I accidently washed my ipod shuffle. I put it in a bag of rice for a week and it worked when I turned it on. Good as new!


Angela (Oh She Glows) November 4, 2010

I tried the rice trick but it didnt work for me. I think my dealbreaker was trying to turn ON the shuffle after washing it (fried it I think) so the rice trick failed!


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