Friday Food: Spicy Vegetable Chili

If there is one meal this New-Mexican raised girl knows and loves to make, it’s Chili. Pizza, step aside, this is my winter Fave. It’s spicy, full of fiber & only vegetables.

Every time I approach the pot, a different combination is thrown into the mix. That being said, these are My Chili Staples:

*Black Beans, rinsed & drained
*Kidney Beans, rinsed & drained
*Diced Tomatoes, undrained
*Salsa ( 1/2 – 1 cup)
*Diced Onion
*Cinnamon (
this is Key!)

fridayfood 003

The rest of this batch contained corn kernels (as you can see), salt & pepper, cumin & green onion. Combine everything in a large pot and simmer for ~15-20 minutes.

Never shy away from adding what you want into that bowl – extra vegetable broth, more salsa, green chile (seeing a spice theme here?), green peppers, tempeh, etc.

The next day, I diced a celery stalk & chopped up some green pepper slices and stirred them right in. They softened in the microwave for the perfect leftovers-lunch!

Another mix-in I’ve experimented with is Polenta: stir in ~2 tbsp at a time while the chili is simmering, it creates a thicker texture and heartier chili! Our leftover polenta had apparently been in the fridge for a few days longer than it preferred. Not okay.

One last tip – top that bowl with a small spoonful of Greek Yogurt (instead of sour cream) & a sprinkling of shredded cheddar (which we did not have, sad). You’ll never look back…

What are your chili staples?

Or, your favorite winter soup(s)?



Filed under dinners, lunches, recipes, things that make me Happy

19 responses to “Friday Food: Spicy Vegetable Chili

  1. Wow! Never thought to use polenta as a thickener, I’m totally going to try that! I love using greek yogurt in place of sour cream – it is SO good mashed into a sweet potato!

  2. My chili staples are lean ground turkey, black beans, crushed tomatoes, pinot noir, red peppers, and jalapenos. Spice-wise: cumin, chili powder, oregano & bay leaves.

    Substituting greek yogurt for sour cream is a great tip, I always forget to do that!

  3. oh, love the tip about the polenta! i’ve heard that mixing in shredded tortillas (corn) is a great chili thickener too 🙂

  4. Love the polenta idea! It is def chili weather these days.

  5. You know, I have never been a chili lover. May have to give it another try this winter.

    Have a great weekend!

  6. lacey

    that looks incredible!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! i love meat free chili- and yours looks so fresh / delish.

  7. Looks yummy! I love chili, but have never tried cinnamon in it, how much do you usually put in?

  8. Elizabeth

    I’ll be honest – I prefer my chili with a little ground beef. But that’s just me.

    Also, my mom has this recipe for what she calls “Portuguese stew” (though I’m not sure why), but it’s full of veggies (and we make it with sausage). I think you’d love it, though, minus the meat. And it’s great as leftovers.

  9. My staples are very similar to yours. I love adding chipotle salsa for a kick and lately I’ve tried adding pumpkin and butternut squash and both are delicious in there 🙂

  10. I like to put a spoonful of cottage cheese in my bowl of chili . I know that’s sort of odd! And copious amounts of hot sauce.

  11. Amy

    I use pumpkin as a thickener – you can’t taste it at all. I also love to add corn (usually white) into my veggie chili. We usually use scoop our chili up with the baked Lays Scoops.

  12. Que magnifique!

    I love white chili now, lots of beans:)

    Good tip of the Greek Yogurt, I had no idea!

  13. Sometimes I think I could eat chili everyday, twice a day. I LOVE it. I’ve been using black beans & pinto beans (instead of kidney beans). I also love squash and mushrooms in mine. Next pot I make, I’ll try the sprinkle of cinnamon. 🙂 And I almost always top mine with avocado slices.

  14. Yum!! I love adding crushed red pepper to my chili for an extra kick!

  15. What great and healthy looking chili!! I am a huge fan of stews and soups…with brown rice wraps baked into chips for dipping 😉

    Love this recipe!


  16. i just made some vegetable chili yesterday! I tosed in red, yellow and green peppers cause I’m always working on getting in my veggies.

    i have been on a huge roasted red pepper soup kick…i think my mom’s chicken noodle casserole really makes me think of winter though

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