I love Pinole and I love sharing this recipe. It took me quite a bit of time to find the specifics. Even with the couple of recipes I found online, I still had to change a few parts and get it just right.
I originally heard about Pinole in “Born to Run” by Christopher McDougall. He mentions that the Taraumara Indians who run hundreds of miles in the Copper Canyons of Mexico actually use Pinole like we use Gels or Gu here in America. So I decided to give it a try. If it’s that good for them and it’s completely natural and you can control what you put in it, why not give it a try? After trying several pinole recipes, mixing and remixing, adding and taking away I finally found one that worked perfectly for me.
Pinole Recipe Base (You can change this according to your tastes)
1 Cup of Cornmeal (toasted dry on the stove for about 5 minutes)
2 Tbsp. Chia Seeds
4 Tbsp. Brown Sugar
2 Tsp. Cinnamon
4 Tbsp. Agave Nectar or Honey
Note: There are many other things to add and try. This is just my base Pinole. I have had success with adding peanut butter, chocolate chips, or even protein power. The extra stuff is up to your imagination.
1. Mix the dry ingredients; toasted cornmeal, chia seeds, brown sugar and cinnamon.
2. Add the eggs and sweetener. It will make a pasty substance, similar to a brownie but I still find it is best to mix by hand.
3. Place the mixture into a 12in x 12in greased. You can use either Pam or butter. Spread the Pinole evenly and place in the oven at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.
4. Let it sit for about ten minutes before placing in the freezer for ten minutes. For me the freezer seems to help the Pinole stick together before I cut it into squares.
There may be a few crumbles but it is nothing compared to the first time, when I made it with water. I generally eat a piece for my afternoon snack. But it also works great for energy during a run. Give it a try and let me know how it works out. Also let me know any crazy ingredient ideas.
Alex Bridgeforth is a 2nd Lieutenant in the United States Army. He is addicted to running and has created Addicted to Running, a running blog.