Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Vegetarian Chili

Vegetarian Chili (also known as chili sin carne or chili without meat) is a spicy flavorful stew-like dish. Mostly made with some kind of meat was slowly replaced by veggies with the rise of vegetarians in the U.S. It is debatable whether Chili originated in Mexico since its rarely found there anymore. Did you know that Chili con carne or Chili with meat is the official dish of Texas??

I started making this dish when I went on a diet as it is such an hearty meal with so many vegetables, beans and spices. Since then, it has become one of my favorites. You can add any kind of vegetables or beans to suit your needs.


2 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 stalk celerey, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
1 zucchini, chopped
2 jalapeno peppers, finely chopped
1 large green bell pepper, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 tbsp chili powder
1 tbsp ground cumin
1 (15oz) can petite diced tomatoes with liquid
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 (15oz) can black beans with liquid
1 (15oz) can red kidney beans, drained
1 tbsp dried oregano
1/4 cup vegetable broth (optional)
Salt, to taste
1 tbsp lime juice
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
Cheddar cheese, for garnish (optional)
Light sour cream, for garnish (optional)


Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onions, carrots, celery, green bell pepper, zucchini, jalapeno peppers and garlic and cook for 10 to 12 minutes, until vegetables are softened but not browned.

Add chili powder, cumin powder, oregano, and salt. Mix well with the vegetables. Add tomatoes, tomato paste and beans.

If you find the chili to be very thick, you can dilute it a bit with some vegetable broth. Bring to a boil and reduce to low heat. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Stir in lime juice and cilantro just before serving. Garnish individual bowls with cheddar cheese and sour cream, if desired.

Makes 5 servings.