Quinoa Veggie Chili

Some of my favorite recipes are those that I came up with after a thorough search through the cupboards and fridge to see what odds and ends I could throw into a pot. As much as I love trying new concoctions from my ever-growing hoard of cookbooks and magazines, experimenting with new recipes can lead to an impressive lot of bits and pieces of vegetables lingering in the fridge that need to be consumed. This veggie chili is the ideal way to use all of those up – chop it all, throw it into a pot, and then feast off of it for a few days!!! Try out my version, or use the basic concept of vegetables/quinoa/beans/tomatoes and add whatever random items you might have. Although I must say, the chipotles are a must. The smoky spiciness of them adds something to the stew that would be sorely missed without. And if you need an idea to use up the rest of that can of chipotles, here’s a Serious Eats article that I turn to when I need some inspiration.

Packed with a serious amount of vegetables and protein-rich quinoa and beans, this chili is awesome by itself, but even better with some grated cheese (my choice is sharp cheddar) and slices of creamy avocado. The bonus is that it freezes well, too! Scoop it into some Ball jars and throw it in the freezer for a night when you need a healthy quick meal.

Quinoa Veggie Chili

Ingredients

1 Tbsp. olive oil
2 medium carrots, cut into quarters and sliced
1 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 chipotles in adobo sauce, chopped
1/2 tsp. cumin
1 Tbsp. fresh oregano, chopped (or 1 tsp. dried)
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch chunks
1/2 butternut squash (about 1 lb.), peeled and cut into 1/2 inch chunks
1 bell pepper, cut into 1/4 inch chunks
1 zucchini, cut into quarters and sliced
4 oz. mushrooms, sliced
6 cups vegetable broth
2 cups quinoa, uncooked
2 cups beans, cooked (or 1 15 oz. can). I used adzuki, but black beans or kidney beans would work just as well
1 15 oz. can diced tomatoes
1/2 bunch kale
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
avocado and grated cheddar cheese for serving (optional)

Instructions

  1. In a large pot, saute carrots and onion in olive oil on medium heat until they start to get soft, 5-7 min.
  2. Add garlic, cumin, oregano, and chipotles. Saute for a minute more, stirring.
  3. Add sweet potato and squash and saute for a couple more minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Add broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 10 min.
  5. Add pepper, zucchini, and mushrooms, and cook for 5 more minutes.
  6. Add quinoa, beans, and diced tomatoes with the juice. Bring to a boil again, then turn down heat and simmer for 15 min.
  7. Add kale and cook for another 5 min. until kale is wilted. Remove from heat and add cilantro.
  8. Serve with sliced avocado and grated cheddar if you wish, or as is!

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