November has arrived! What could possibly be better on a cool fall day than a warm bowl of chili? Thinking...thinking...thinking...That's right, not a thing. Unless, of course, you can find yourself on an exotic vacation in the tropics. Now that would probably be better than a bowl of chili. For most of us though, that just isn't in the books, and we decide to settle for some cozy home cooking instead.
In our most recent CSA haul, we had many sweet potatoes to use up, so I searched and searched for a new recipe to try out. I came across an intriguing recipe for Vegan Quinoa & Sweet Potato Chili on Pinterest, and decided to give it a go.
|Recipe adapted from Milk Free Mom|
Quinoa, pronounced KEEN-Wah, is a relatively new food for me. I originally heard of it through vegetarian cookbooks and health food magazines. I can now say that it has become much more mainstream as I keep seeing recipes popping up via Pinterest, blogs, and conversations with health food lovers.
Quinoa is a grain-like crop grown for it's edible seeds. It is an excellent source of protein, and is also gluten and cholesterol free, making it a darling of people following a healthy diet. It is available in health food markets, and in the organic section of most grocery stores. Quinoa has become so popular in fact, that the United Nations has dubbed 2013 as the International Year of Quinoa. Pretty impressive!
VEGAN QUINOA & SWEET POTATO CHILI | Yield: 6 Servings | Prep: 5 min. | Total Time: 35 min.
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 29 oz can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 6 oz can tomato paste
32 oz vegetable stock
2 1/2 Tbsp chili powder
1 1/2 Tbsp cumin
2 tsp oregano
2 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into bite size chunks
1 C dry quinoa
salt & pepper to taste
water to your liking for consistency
avocado, cilantro, mexican cheese for garnish (optional)
Heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium low heat. Add onions, and cook until translucent and starting to brown (about 10 min.). Add garlic and cook 2 min. Add tomato paste, chili powder, cumin, and oregano and cook 2 min. stirring constantly. Add black beans, sweet potatoes, vegetable stock, and season with salt and pepper. Cook for 5 min. then add quinoa.
Continue cooking 25-30 min., stirring frequently, until quinoa and potatoes are cooked, and the chili has thickened. Add water if chili becomes too thick for your liking. I probably added about 1 C for the consistency shown above.
Garnish with avocado, cilantro, mexican cheese to serve.
This quick and healthy dinner option was very easy to make, not very time-consuming, and very filling. It will keep for several days in the fridge, or can be frozen for up to one month. The second day chili reheated was even tastier after the flavors had a chance to meld together overnight in the fridge. I hope you like it as much as we did!
Have you ever cooked with quinoa?