Quinoa Chili

Quinoa ChiliThis is a new favorite around here. The first time I made it, I was genuinely blown away by how good it was. I found the recipe on Pinterest, and in the picture it was topped with sour cream, cheese, and avocado slices. I bet that’s delicious, but it is divine even without those additions. I don’t cook often with canned vegetables, but this a great recipe for tiding you over until the days of fresh corn, tomatoes, and peppers. And when those days come, you can make the substitution, and this chili will be even better.

Quinoa ChiliI think the secret is to use smoked paprika instead of regular paprika. We only had smoked the first time I made this chili, so I tossed it on in, and I never looked back. I love that deep roasted flavor. The other fabulous things about this chili: 1) it is really filling, and 2) this recipe makes a giant pot (especially if you are like me and add extra beans to everything because you happen to be in love with them). I am planning to make a big pot of this and freeze it for after the baby comes. For those looking for a more meaty option, Eric loves chopped chicken in his chili. I’m more of a purist, but that’s probably only because beans and grains are my idea of food paradise.

Quinoa Chili
Recipe from Damn Delicious

1 tablespoon olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, diced
2 cups cooked quinoa
2 (14.5-ounce) cans diced tomatoes
1 (15-ounce) can tomato sauce
1 (4.5-ounce) can diced green chiles
1 1/2 tablespoons chili powder, or more, to taste
2 teaspoons cumin
1 1/2 teaspoons paprika (use smoked paprika!)
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar (I omitted this)
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 (15-ounce) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15-ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 1/2 cups corn kernels
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves
Juice of 1 lime
1 avocado, diced

-Heat olive oil in a Dutch oven or large pot over medium high heat. Add garlic and onion, and cook, stirring frequently, until onions have become translucent, about 2-3 minutes. (I like to cook my onions longer, getting them nice and brown for extra flavor.)
-Stir in quinoa, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, green chiles, chili powder, cumin, paprika, sugar, cayenne pepper, coriander and 1-2 cups water, making sure to cover most of the ingredients; season with salt and pepper, to taste.
-Reduce heat to low; simmer, covered, until thickened, about 30 minutes. Stir in beans, corn, cilantro and lime juice until heated through, about 2 minutes.
-Serve immediately with avocado, if desired.

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