Folks, whether we like to admit it or not, in a few weeks the season will begin to change and the bright colours and warmth of summer will fade into the cooler, shorter days of fall. And even though the leaves are prettier and it’s nice to pull out your favourite sweater, nothing is sweeter than being able to prepare hearty meals, which to me means soups, stews, and of course, chili!
This chili recipe will satisfy even the most diehard carnivore. Most chili recipes consist of ground beef, chicken, or turkey, however, replacing those with cooked quinoa not only lowers the fat content and prepares a healthier meal, but the texture and consistency very closely resembles that of your favourite diner’s chili recipe.
Be warned, however, this recipe makes a large amount and there’s quite a long list of ingredients, but most of this stuff you already have in your pantry or your spice cabinet. You can try cutting the recipe in half, or you can make the whole batch and freeze it. Chili, unlike most foods, freezes extremely well and can be thawed and reheated without losing any flavour or texture. In fact, I know many people who would argue that reheated chili is better the second time around!
Here’s what you’ll need:
- 2 cups cooked quinoa
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large onion, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 large cans diced tomatoes
- 1 large can tomato sauce
- 1 1/2 cups of vegetable stock
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (you adjust this amount to suit your personal tastes)
- 2 cans kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 can beans in tomato sauce
- 2 cups frozen corn kernels
- 1/2 cup fresh parsley
Heat the olive oil in a large heavy bottom pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion and sauté until translucent. Add the garlic and continue to sauté for another minute. Next, add the diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, cooked quinoa, vegetable stock, chili powder, ground cumin, cocoa powder, paprika, granulated sugar, ground coriander, cayenne pepper, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Bring mixture just to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer, cover pot and allow to simmer 30 minutes. Remove lid and stir well. Next, add all of the beans, corn, and parsley. Cook until heated thoroughly. You can certainly serve this dish piping how with optional toppings and sides (cheddar, sour cream, diced avocados, crackers or tortilla chips), however, I opted for only a little sour cream. You need nothing in terms of extras or toppings with a chili that tastes this great!