Spicy Vegetarian Chili

Yes, we have gone from two comfy-cozy salaries to one super tight budget, so we have been cutting corners like crazy. I’m not willing to cut back completely (kraft cheese and wonderbread grilled sandwiches are OUT of the question), so I have instead found ways to make gourmet food last. This is hard, mostly because we don’t own a microwave. I know, I know…many of your jaws are dropping to the ground, but we simply don’t have the space in our tiny Brooklyn kitchen, so reheating food is limited to stovetop and oven.

My goal in these cooking blog posts is to come up with new recipes to try that are now only inexpensive (i.e cheaper than take-out) but also worth the effort of planning, cooking, and cleaning up. Enter today’s recipe: Smoky Chipotle Vegetarian Chili. We got 2 dinners and 2 lunches out of this bad boy! Pair it with some crusty bread and you will be heaven.

We. Loved. This. Recipe.

Smokey Chipotle Vegetarian Chili
(adapted from BigGirlsSmallKitchen-but I made many changes which you will find below)

1 14.5 oz cans kidney beans
1 14.5 oz can black beans
1 14.5 oz can pinto beans
1 medium zucchini, quartered and sliced
1 yellow squash
1 large sweet onions
1 red pepper
1 yellow pepper
1 orange pepper (if unavailable, double up on red)
2-3 14.5 oz cans fire roasted diced tomatoes (I used 3, but you might consider trying less) I used Muir Glen Organic Fire Roasted Diced Tomatoes in Adobo)
1/4 quart veggie stock
1/2 7oz can mild green chilies
½ 7oz can whole chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (if you can only find the big size, just use about 3-4 chilis and spoon them in with the sauce)
1 tablespoons chili powder
1 tablespoons cumin
1/2 tbsp oregano
2 cloves garlic
1/2 bottle dark Mexican beer (we used guinness)
1 bunch cilantro stems (leaves to be used for garnish and salad dressing)


Handful cilantro leaves
Shredded Monterey Jack cheese
2 limes, cut into thin wedges (12 total)
Crushed tortilla chips
Diced avocado

Chop onions and peppers and put in slow cooker- add the zucchini and the squash. Add tomatoes and turn slow-cooker on.

In a small food processor, add garlic cloves, cilantro stems, green chilies, and chipotle peppers. Puree mixture. Add 1/4 cup of stock, and pulse to combine. Pour mixture into slow-cooker with the rest of the vegetables. Rinse beans thoroughly in a colander to get rid of the canning liquids, then add to the pot. Add salt, chili powder, cumin, oregano, beer, and the remaining stock. Stir it up and cook on low for 5-6 hours.

Yeah, yum. This was seriously so so so so so good.

Shared with: John and Emma
Paired with: Sierra Nevada Harvest Ale