What runners eat: chia nectarine pudding

What do runners eat? Some of us might be tempted to look at the mileage we’re putting in and reply, “Whatever we want.” And it’s true, a lot of runners know how to balance mostly-healthy choices with the occasional indulgence. Others, for health or personal reasons, take this a step further and stick to paleo, gluten free, or vegan diets. I’ve even heard tell of the rare runner who can thrive on an all-junk-food diet.

(I’m not here to judge. I’ve been on a gluten free diet since being diagnosed with celiac disease nine years ago.)

We may differ in how we eat, but we all need to eat.

Welcome to What Runners Eat, an occasional feature here at Fresno Runner where we share a favorite healthy (or not-so-healthy, maybe it’s just delicious) recipe. Today’s recipe makes use of in-season nectarines, which are abundant here in the Central Valley in the summer months.

This cool, refreshing chia nectarine pudding makes use of nutrient-dense chia seeds, which are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, calcium, and protein. Coconut milk, fresh nectarines, and maple syrup round out the ingredient list. The whole thing can be whipped up in under 10 minutes. Bonus: This recipe somehow manages to be gluten free, vegan, and paleo-friendly. Which means you can serve it at your next post-long run brunch without worrying about offending anybody.


Chia nectarine pudding

This four-ingredient chia nectarine pudding makes use of in-season nectarines and is gluten free, vegan, and paleo-friendly.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Servings 8
Author Fresno Runner


  • 1 13 oz. can light coconut milk
  • 2 ripe nectarines
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup
  • 6 tablespoons chia seeds


  1. Using a vegetable peeler, gently peel one of the nectarines. Remove the fruit from the pit and place in a blender, along with the coconut milk and maple syrup. Puree until well-mixed.

  2. Pour the liquid mixture into a mixing bowl and add the chia seeds.

  3. Dice the second nectarine. Add to the mixing bowl. Gently fold chia seeds and nectarine pieces into the liquid.

  4. Pour pudding into individual cups or dishes. I used small canning jars. Cover and chill for 8 hours, or overnight, before serving.

Recipe Notes

Note: I based this recipe on similar recipes I've come across online. You can experiment with your liquid base, fruit, and sweeteners to put your own spin on things. For instance, honey, agave nectar, or sugar can be used in place of the maple syrup.


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