A rather straightforward yet enormously satisfying recipe, this chili is the perfect antidote to a snow storm or head cold. Gather your ingredients and spend some time over the stove on Sunday afternoon so you're prepared with something hearty and warm that will make you feel great all week long. You could probably even make it in a crockpot if you wanted to get really lazy!
This chili is one of my all-time favorite dishes that covers everything I'm looking for in a vegetarian winter meal - deep flavor, a toothsome balance between mushy and solid, a well-rounded array of nutritious vegetables, legumes and spices, and all the comforts of home. It's just as excellent as a freshly made dinner as it is a microwaved lunch.
Spicy Butternut Squash Chili
Prep time: 20 minutes. Cook time: 60 minutes.
Ingredients for about 6 servings (so you and a friend can enjoy it for lunch & dinner all week long!)
- 2 cups butternut squash, cubed (about 1 medium squash)
- 1 cup black beans, cooked or canned
- 1 cup kidney beans, cooked or canned
- 3 cups tomatoes, cubed
- 1 cup red onion, cubed
- 1 cup red bell pepper, cubed
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1-2 cups vegetable broth
- 1/2 jalapeño (seeds in)
- 1 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1 tsp chili powder
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- salt + pepper
- In a large pot, heat olive oil. When glistening, add cubed butternut squash and onions. Sprinkle with some salt + pepper then stir until vegetables are all coated in oil. Cook on medium-high heat for 5 minutes, or until butternut squash begins to soften and onions start to go translucent.
- Add bell peppers and garlic to the pot. Let cook for another 5 minutes.
- Add beans, tomatoes, jalapeño and all spices. Stir until incorporated, reduce heat to medium-low and cover. Let this cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent the bottom from burning.
- After 10 minutes everything in the pot should be breaking down and melding together, creating a wonderfully fragrant odor. Add vegetable broth, reduce to a simmer and let cook for 20 more minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent the bottom from burning.
- Taste the chili and see what you think. Add more spices if desired.
- Serve hot on its own or atop rice. Add avocado chunks, fried tortilla strips and chopped cilantro to garnish each bowl for a thoroughly satisfying experience.