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You need this banana bread in your life

You''ll want second helpings of ultrarunner Lucy Bartholomew's amazing plant-based recipes

Australian ultratrail runner Lucy Bartholomew is a fantastic cook. OK, I’ve never sat down and shared a meal with her, but I’ve been working through her recently published and free-to-download cookbook, Sustain Your Ability, with joy.

Bartholomew has had a challenging race season so far, with a concussion and resulting DNF at Western States Endurance Run (where she finished third woman in 2018). She’s now preparing for the iconic Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc (UTMB) in Chamonix, France, and is no doubt munching on her delectable curried rice balls and chickpea pancakes as she trains.

Lucy Bartholomew
Photo: Instagram/lucybartholomew

Bartholomew is the kind of athlete you want to invite over for coffee and introduce to your dogs. She shares her ‘why’ for writing a cookbook in the intro, along with fascinating details about her life, the struggles she has faced and her triumphs. It’s easy to see why she’s a fan favourite.

While everything in her plant-based cookbook has been fantastic so far, you should try her banana bread as soon as humanly possible.

banana bread
Photo: Instagram/lucybartholomew

Lucy’s Banana Bread


3 ripe bananas

1½ cup flour (Lucy suggests wholemeal spelt)

2 tsp cinnamon

1 tbsp flaxseed meal

1 cup date-soaking water

1½ tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

½ cup chopped nuts

½ cup dates, pitted and soaked in hot water for 10 min OR 1/4 cup sweet syrup (golden, honey, maple)

Lucy Bartholomew
Photo: Instagram/lucybartholomew


Pre-heat oven to 180 C (350 F) and line a bread tin with reusable baking liner or a light coat of oil.

Add all ingredients (except chopped nuts) into a food processor and blend until combined.

Fold through chopped nuts and pour mixture into prepared bread tin.

Place into oven for 45 min-1 hr or until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean (meaning it’s cooked all the way through).

Remove and turn off the oven, leaving to cool in the tin for 15 min. Enjoy!

Lucy’s tips

Old bananas either go in the freezer to be used for smoothies or in a bowl to be made into banana bread. I love changing this up with decadent chocolate chips, or add some healthy fats and more protein by stirring some more nuts in.