I am SO in love with this Chili!!
The crisp Fall air has officially moved in to our little nestled village and I’m craving warmth in every way.
This Veggie Squash Chili is so loaded with comfort: it’s full flavour & mellow spice, the fulfilling density of squash and black beans, and the complete satiating sensation that comes with a warming bowl of goodness on a dark October night! Best thing? My kid devours it with “umm’s” and “ohh’s” and requests for its presence in his lunch box. As a parent (and a Nutritionist), my feeling on this is = SLAM DUNK!
If in your previous life you’ve associated Chili with beef and grated cheddar cheese, I dare you to step away from your old ways and open yourself up to the Veggie Chili movement. Nothing is missing from this one, I kid you not! However, don’t forget to delight your taste buds with those tasty garnishes: fresh cilantro, avocado, cashew sour cream (if you like to go the distance ), and definitely those toasted pumpkin seeds for a little crispy crunch!
Make this my way or change it up to suit your heart’s desires! But do let me know how you like it, if your family devoured it, and if you brightened someone’s day with it!
Nutritional Notes: Kabocha squash is loaded with Vitamin A (beta-carotene) known for its immune support, eye, skin & hair health, Vitamin C, plant-based iron, B vitamins & fibre. We love beans for their incredible protein power, fibre density, and benefits to cardiovascular health. Onions and garlic are amazing antioxidants, cancer fighters, and protectors against heart disease. And we are still crazy about Kale, no matter what they say, for its antioxidant properties, nutrient-density, Vitamin C, mineral dosage and heart protective capabilities!
Veggie Squash Chili
2 Tbsp coconut oil
1 medium red onion, chopped
1 small kabocha squash, cubed
1 large red bell pepper, chopped
2 medium carrots, chopped
2 ribs celery, chopped
1 tsp salt
6 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbsp chili powder
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp coriander
1 ½ tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp dried oregano
1 large can (28 oz) diced tomatoes with juices
1 can (15 oz) black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can (15 oz) pinto beans, drained and rinsed
2 cups vegetable broth
1 bay leaf
1 bunch kale, washed, stemmed and chopped
Juice of 1-2 limes
For Serving: Avocado, Cilantro, and Toasted Pumpkin Seeds
In a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat, warm the coconut oil and onion and sauté until softened. Add the squash, onion, peppers, carrot, celery and salt. Stir to combine and then cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender, about 7 to 10 minutes.
Add spices and cook until fragrant, stirring constantly, 3-5 minutes.
Add the tomatoes, beans, vegetable broth and bay leaf. Stir to combine and bring to a simmer. Maintain a gentle simmer for 30 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Stir in kale, cook another 10 minutes and then remove from heat
Before serving, add lime juice and fresh pepper, and adjust to taste. Serve with fresh avocado, cilantro or basil and toasted pumpkin seeds.
Note: Best on day 2 (or 3 or 4 or 5).
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