I've recently moved from California to Seattle, Washington. And I've made many observations in these past few weeks, one of which is that the grey, wet rumor is true. According to everyone I speak to, it looks like soup and chili weather will stick around for quite some time.
We were having friends over for dinner last weekend and sat down with some of our favorite cookbooks to decide what sounded fun to cook. One half of the couple is vegetarian, so we started leaning towards something meat-less yet warm, hearty, and satisfying.
Chili! In my experience, there are endless vegetarian chili recipes out there -- some as simple as pouring a can of beans and tomatoes in a pot and adding a bit of spice while others are an all-day simmering affair. This one rests comfortably inbetween these two approaches and has the most rich and layered flavor of any chili (vegetarian or not) I've ever tried. It was inspired by a recipe in Bon Appétit a while back that added butternut squash to chili, and I loved the idea. And thankfully, our dinner guests loved our version. In fact, I decided to post it today largely because they immediately asked for the recipe; I figured if I was typing it up for them, you all would enjoy it, too.
A few notes to get us started: the chipotle pepper is an important part of the sauce. They'll be in a little can in the Latin section of your grocery store or any Mexican market. I've found them in a few grocery stores here in the Northwest without any difficulty. If you can't locate them near your home, you can use an additional 1/2 teaspoon of chili powder, or experiment with a smokey Spanish paprika. It won't have the same heat at all, but it will still be delicious.
Also, a note on cooking beans: the time varies each and every time I make a pot of them and this is largely determined by the freshness and type of bean. If you're using very old dried beans, they're going to take much longer to cook. So the cook time for this recipe probably seems vast (2-4 hours); I would just plan ahead so you're not finishing up the chili the second folks walk in the door. I'd much rather do a quick reheat than explain to guests that the beans are taking a little longer than expected.
And last, the sweet potato and quinoa actually cook in the chili. You're going to want to add the sweet potato and quinoa when the chili has about 45 minutes left to go, so use your best guess as to when the beans are still pretty firm on the outside but are surely softening on the inside. If you're like me and don't mind your sweet potatoes and quinoa quite soft (it is chili, after all), just toss them in after 1.5 hours of cooking time and call it a day.
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|Serving Size: 1 Recipe (371g)|
|Recipe Makes: 1 Recipe|
|Calories from Fat: 102 (9%)|
|Amt Per Serving||% DV|
|Total Fat 11.4g||15 %|
|Saturated Fat 1.9g||10 %|
|Monounsaturated Fat 4g|
|Polyunsanturated Fat 4.1g|
|Cholesterol 0mg||0 %|
|Sodium 89.5mg||3 %|
|Potassium 4084mg||107 %|
|Total Carbohydrate 217.6g||64 %|
|Dietary Fiber 42.3g||169 %|
|Sugars, other 175.3g|
|Protein 59.7g||85 %|
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Calories per serving: 1178
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