Jam-packed with lycopene-rich tomatoes, magnesium-fiber-and-protein-filled beans, and peppers and carrots that are brimming with carotenoids, this vegetarian (and vegan) chili is one of my PAMM Diet all-stars! It’s a quick and easy way to help meet your veggie quota while warming your soul on a darker, colder late-fall or winter day. I especially love that one batch can last several days, and tastes even better the 2nd and 3rd days, when the flavors have truly melded. I hope you like this vegetarian chili as much as I do!
*use organic veggies and beans and cans/packaging with BPA-free lining, when possible*
- 3 to 6 Tbsp olive oil (or spicy jalapeño or jalapeño-garlic oil if you like a little “heat”)
- 1 to 2 onions, chopped
- 2 to 3 bell peppers, chopped: orange, yellow and/or red
- 1 cup chopped carrots
- 1 15 oz can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 15 oz can corn, drained and rinsed
- optional – yellow squash or zucchini, sliced into small pieces
- 2 to 3 large cans or boxes of chopped tomatoes
- 2 to 4 cups filtered water
- 3 to 4 Tbsp Mexican Seasoning Blend (alternately, use 2-3 tsp each of cumin and chili powder, and an optional 1/2 tsp of coriander)
- Himalayan or sea salt and pepper, to taste
- Optional: 1 to 2 tsp honey (to blunt the acidity of the tomatoes)
- Optional garnishes: sliced avocado (for vegan chili) and grated cheddar cheese (for vegetarian chili)
In a large saucepan, over low-medium heat, cook the chopped onions, carrots, bell peppers, and (optional) squash in 3 or 4 Tbsp olive oil until the carrots or squash are tender. Stir in the beans, corn and tomatoes, then add water slowly until the chili’s at your preferred consistency (knowing that some liquid will evaporate and the chili will thicken as you cook it). Add 2 Tbsp Mexican Seasoning Blend, bring to a simmer, and cook for 10 to 20 minutes. Taste the soup and add more Mexican Seasoning Blend to your liking, and salt and pepper to taste, if you wish. If you want to cut the acidity of the tomatoes, add a little honey. Serve topped with fresh diced avocado or (if you’re not vegan) organic grated cheddar cheese. You might also want to drizzle some additional garlic jalepeño oil as a final touch.
In a crock pot, cook all ingredients (except the optional garnishes) on low-to-medium heat for a few hours. I suggest you be modest with the spices and seasonings until you taste it – you can always add more!
Suggested pairing, a hearty spinach salad with Lemon-Dijon Vinaigrette. Bon appétit!
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