Now that it’s getting cold out, spend more time warm on the couch or out on the ski slopes and let your crockpot do the cooking for you.
The cold weather is officially here and that means the start of crock pot season! I know there are great year-round crockpot recipes, but I tend to associate slow cooker recipes with warm, comfort meals meant to be enjoyed in the winter.
Last month Bry and I took a trip to Madison to visit our nephew for the first time. And while it was great getting to know the little guy (although, for being 4-months old he wasn’t too little), the highlight was getting to spend time with my brother and sister-in-law. Being a foodie as well, my sister-in-law’s menu for the week was pumpkin-everything in honor of the Fall season. And one of those meals included a pumpkin quinoa chili that was lick-the-bowl-clean good. But now that it’s December I have to admit that I am pumpkined-out. So instead of recreating her dish, I took out the pumpkin and added a bunch of other vegetables create a deliciously filling vegetarian chili.
So why quinoa? Quinoa is a vegetarian source of complete protein, meaning it contains all 9 essential amino acids, and works like meat to keep you nice and full. When cooking your chili, the quinoa will let you know when cooking is complete as the quinoa will become nice and fluffy. It’s also gluten free, making it a safe option if you’re unsure of any food intolerances among your guests.
While there isn’t any meat, I find that using 3 kinds of beans gives chili a “meaty” feel, but if you really can’t stand the idea of chili without meat, feel free to cut back to 1 or 2 cans of beans and add in some ground bison or turkey. BUT I strongly recommend skipping the meat and letting this be a vegetarian chili as it’s good for our bodies to lay off the meat every once and awhile. Plus, if you buy your quinoa in bulk this recipe is super budget-friendly.
If you’ve already scrolled down to the recipe don’t be discouraged by the long list of ingredients! The great part about chili is that most of the ingredients are pantry staples and all you have to do is pour them into the crockpot. As long as you have a can opener and a knife to chop some veggies then you’ll be all set 😉
This weekend would also be perfect football food for this weekend! I’m anxiously gearing up for the Pats vs Bronco’s game on Sunday and know I’ll be needing comfort food to calm my nerves during the game 😉
Crockpot Quinoa Chili
- 4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
- 1 cup uncooked quinoa
- 1 can black beans drained and rinsed
- 1 can kidney beans drained and rinsed
- 1 can white beans drained and rinsed
- 1 28- oz can diced tomatoes with juice from can
- 1 4.5-oz can diced green chili peppers
- 1 red or green bell pepper diced
- 1 carrot diced
- 1 onion diced
- 1 cup frozen corn
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 4 tsp chili powder
- 1/2 tsp cayenne
- 3 tsp salt
- 2 tsp pepper
- 2 tsp cumin
- 2 tsp oregano
Optional sides and toppings
- Plain Greek yogurt
- Shredded Cheese
- Avocado slices
- Rinse and drain beans, chop vegetables, then add all ingredients to the crockpot.
- Cook on high for 4 hours (or until the quinoa have popped and are fluffy).
- Serve with side of cornbread and toppings of choice.