Mostly-Veggie Chili

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See? Rob and I DO eat vegetables. Quite a lot of them, actually.

This recipe originally started as a Weight Watchers recipe (one-point chili) and has evolved into whatever I want it to be on the day I make it. Sometimes I make it with ground beef, sometimes with steak, sometimes with ground chicken or chicken thighs, but mostly with ground turkey. This is by no means a traditional chili recipe but it is delicious and you can feel good about eating it. I shop for produce at Russo’s so this recipe doesn’t break the bank. This week I made it with chicken thighs because they were a full $2 less expensive than ground meat. Granted I had to debone them and remove the skin but if you have the time and you’re not squeamish (I wear gloves) it’s really not that big of a deal. I love heat so I add several assorted hot peppers but if that’s not your thing just omit them. No harm, no foul.

Aside from all the chopping and dicing this recipe is a cinch and takes just about 40 minutes to come together. Sometimes I’ll actually plan ahead and chop the veggies the night before and keep them in a ziplock in the fridge until the next evening when I make the chili. Not that this happens often but for those of you who are organized it’s a good strategy.

Ingredients:

3 bell peppers (I use green, red, and either orange or yellow), chopped
3 stalks of celery, diced
1 onion, diced
2 small or 1 medium zucchini, chopped
2 small or 1 medium summer squash, chopped
1 can of black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can of red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
½ bag of frozen corn
1lb of ground turkey (or whatever meat you want)
up to 2 cups of chicken stock
3 boxes of Pomi chopped tomatoes (26 oz each)
2 jalapenos, diced
3 serrano peppers, diced
1 poblano pepper, diced
2 tsp chili powder
1 tsp paprika
3 tsp cumin
salt and pepper

1. Brown the onions and celery in about 1TBS of olive oil. Add the meat and cook until browned and cooked through. Add the spices and stir to coat the meat.
2. Once meat is cooked add the hot peppers and stir to incorporate
3. Add the rest of the veggies and beans to the pot and stir to incorporate
4. Add tomatoes and then stock until chili is your desired consistency. Stir well.
5. Cover and simmer unti the zucchini and squash are tender, about 35 minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.

Nice chunky chili bite
Nice chunky chili bite
plate full-o-toppings
plate full-o-toppings

The nice thing about this recipe is people can customize it to their taste. For instance I always add extra hot sauce, cheese, sour cream, green onions, and a squeeze of lime.

my toppings
my toppings

Rob likes to add just cheese and onions.

Husband's toppings
Husband’s toppings

Everyone can make theirs the way they want it and dinner time is happy time. This recipe can easily be adapted to be vegetarian or vegan by replacing the chicken stock with veggie stock and omitting the animal protein.

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