Meatless Monday: Vegetable Chili

If you think chili needs meat, then you don’t know beans! Warm up on a cold night with Vegetable Chili. It’s easy to make, economical and stores well for leftovers.

Another plus: This hearty, healthy Meatless Monday recipe provides lots of satisfying, good-for-you ingredients.

For instance, black beans have 14 grams of protein per cup. They also contain heart-healthy fiber and anthocyanin, which is the same antioxidant compound found in blueberries.  Kidney beans are another excellent source of cholesterol-lowering fiber. Dietary fiber prevents blood sugar levels from rising too rapidly after meals. Though tiny, pinto beans offer impressive amounts of vitamins and minerals. For example, pinto beans are a good source of magnesium, manganese, potassium, copper, iron and phosphorous.

Everyone has a favorite chili recipe. Is Vegetable Chili one of yours? Share your chili-making tips in the comments.

Serves 4.


  • 11/2 Tbsp., extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 heaping cups, diced onion
  • 2 Tbsp., minced garlic (about 4 medium/large cloves)
  • 2 jalapeños, seeded (if desired) and diced (removing the seeds reduces the “heat” of the dish)
  • 1 cup, diced celery
  • 1 lg. red bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1 28oz. can, diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup, vegetable broth
  • 6 Tbsp., tomato paste
  • 1 15oz. can, kidney beans (drained and rinsed)
  • 1 15oz. can, pinto beans (drained and rinsed)
  • 2 Tbsp., chili powder
  • 2 tsp., ground cumin
  • 1 tsp., dried oregano
  • ½ to ¾ tsp., fine grain sea salt, or to taste
  • 1/4 tsp., ground cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp., hot sauce
  • Garnish: shredded low-fat mozzarella cheese and reduced-fat cheddar cheese


  1. Heat oil in a pan. Sauté onions and green peppers for 2 to 4 minutes. Add beans and chili powder. Stir well. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes.
  2. Add diced tomatoes, vegetable broth and hot sauce. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat.
  3. Reduce heat. Simmer uncovered for 10 minutes.
  4. Add tomato paste and mix well. Cook for an additional 10 minutes.
  5. Combine cheeses.
  6. Portion with 6 fl oz ladle (3⁄4 cup) into a bowl. Garnish with 2 or 3 chips and 1 tablespoon cheese blend.

Adapted from a USDA recipe.

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