elevating the status of the salad

Tag Archives: chili


This recipe comes from Crazy Sexy Kitchen, the creative vegetarian cookbook by Kris Carr and Chad Sarno. Not only is this chili delicious and filled with vegetables, but it can be made in under 45 minutes from start to finish. Serve with your favorite chips. We tried Lundberg’s rice chips–Fiesta Lime flavor. We crushed them up and sprinkled them on top for added crunch and flavor.


  • 1 1/2 Tbs. cumin seeds
  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 white onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 jalapeño chile, finely diced (omit seeds or use less jalapeño for a milder chili)
  • 2 Tbs. chili powder
  • 1 1/2 cups ground seitan, crumbled tempeh, or finely diced mushrooms (I used frozen Quorn crumbles)
  • 1 zucchini, diced (I used 2 small zucchini)
  • 1/2 cup diced potato
  • 1 15-oz. cans of black beans, rinsed (The recipe called for 2 black bean and one kidney, but I reversed it because that’s what I had on hand)
  • 2 15-oz. can of kidney beans, rinsed
  • 1 14-oz. can of crushed tomatoes, such as San Marzano
  • 2 Tbs. maple syrup
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 bunch of fresh cilantro, plus more for garnish (optional)
  • 1 cup kale, chopped
  • Diced avocado, for garnish, optional


1. Toast cumin seeds in dry soup pot over medium heat for 2 minutes or until aromatic.

2. Add oil, onion, garlic, and jalapeño. Stir until onion is golden and translucent. Add chili powder, seitan, zucchini, and potato, and stir well. Sauté 3 to 4 minutes, stirring constantly. Add black beans, kidney beans, tomatoes, 2 cups water, maple syrup, sea salt, and cilantro. Cover pot, reduce heat to low, and cook 20 to 25 minutes, or until potatoes are tender.

3. Remove from heat;  stir in kale. Garnish with diced avocado and sprigs of fresh cilantro, if using.

Yesterday morning, the farmers were so cold that they had to pass the time by having a catch (or playing catch, depending on where you’re from) with a sweet potato and tongs. I am so thankful that they come out no matter the weather. The sweet potatoes and scallions in this recipe are from that market.

Not only does this recipe highlight winter vegetables, but this was also a good way to use up some cans of beans that seemed to be multiplying in my pantry. I used a recipe from Real Simple which was made for slow cookers. Since I don’t have a slow cooker, the cooking times are changed. I also used fire-roasted tomatoes with spicy chiles, but the recipe does not call for the spicy kind.

As with most chili, this one gets better the next day or the day after that. I like to make a big batch, and then heat some up the next morning to put in my thermos. I love this one for work because it even comes with its own little folding spoon…how adorable! Keep the “fixins” in a separate container so they don’t get soggy.  It makes for a much more exciting lunch than pb&j.


  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium red onion, chopped
  • 1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch dice
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • kosher salt and black pepper
  • 1 28-ounce can fire-roasted diced tomatoes
  • 1 15.5-ounce can black beans, rinsed
  • 1 15.5-ounce can kidney beans, rinsed
  • sour cream, sliced scallions, thinly sliced radishes, and tortilla chips, for serving


  1. In a large pot over medium heat, combine 1 tablespoon oil, the onion, and the sweet pepper. Stir occasionally until onions are soft, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add the peppers and cook an additional 2 minutes.
  3. Add the  garlic, chili powder, cumin, cocoa, cinnamon, 1 teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon black pepper. Stir constantly until fragrant, about one minute.
  4. Add the tomatoes, beans, and 1 cup water.
  5. Cover and cook for 20-30 minutes, until potatoes are tender.
  6. Serve with thinly sliced radishes, sour cream, scallions, and tortilla chips.