Sweet Potato, Black Bean and Quinoa Chili

This week was one of those “let’s see what’s in my kitchen and throw something together” kind of weeks. Luckily I had lots of scraps around and only had to run out for toppings, which made for a colourful, gluten-free, vegan and healthy chili.

I feel like a lot of people see chili as a “cold weather” kind of food, but as a vegetarian it’s got tons of vitamins and nutrients that might be difficult to fit into other meals, and you can serve it cold depending on your preference. I ate some at dinner with cheese and avocado on top; then the next day I took it for lunch and ate it as-is.

Quinoa in chili is something new I tried because it gives that extra boost of protein without using soy. Although soy is a really versatile and good-tasting product, I’ve heard a lot of things about the negative effects that can come from eating too much of it. So I try to limit my soy intake and use other sources of protein. In this case, two kinds of beans and quinoa do the trick. I saw the idea for using quinoa in chili from Two Peas and Their Pod, then I just adapted the recipe from there.Sweet Potato, Black Bean and Quinoa Chili

Ingredients

Makes 6 servings

  • 1/2 cup royal quinoa (red and white quinoa mixed), rinsed
  • 1 cup water
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 medium sweet potato, peeled and diced
  • 1 zucchini, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 2 stalks celery, thinly sliced
  • 1 (540mL) can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (540mL) can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 (796mL) cans diced tomatoesβ€” keep the liquid
  • 3/4 cup vegetable broth
  • 1 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • 3/4 cup frozen corn

Method

Place quinoa and water in a small pot, cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce to low heat and simmer for 15 minutes, uncovered. The water should be completely absorbed at this point. Set aside.

Heat olive oil in a large pot on medium-high heat, then add onion and garlic. Cook for 4-5 minutes, then add sweet potato, zucchini, bell pepper, carrots and celery. Cook for another 5 minutes once onions are just lightly golden, then add in both kinds of beans, canned tomatoes and broth. Then add cayenne pepper, cumin, chili powder, salt and pepper.

Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally, and then lower heat down to a simmer. Cook, simmering, for 25 minutesβ€”partially covered. Add in corn, then cook (still on a low simmer) for another 10 minutes. Once finished, the sweet potato should be easily piercable with a fork.

Serve hot with melted cheese on top, fresh chives and avocado slices.Sweet Potato, Black Bean and Quinoa ChiliSweet Potato, Black Bean and Quinoa Chili

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13 thoughts on “Sweet Potato, Black Bean and Quinoa Chili

    • Veronica Sheppard says:

      I thought it was a little strange too when I first saw the idea but it turned out really well! You’re right, it’s great for texture. I was a little worried in would turn out ‘slimey’ like rice/pasta can in soups, but it doesn’t at all

  1. trixpin says:

    What a lovely sounding and looking dish – it’s so vibrant and looks totally scrummy πŸ˜€ A great idea for using quinoa, of which I have a bag in the cupboard gathering dust. Thanks!

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