Monday, October 27, 2014

Vegan Crockpot Quinoa and Black Bean Chili

I've been on a slow cooker binge lately.  In fact, on Saturday, I used it twice.  In one day.  It helps that I am in love with my Cuisenart slow cooker (it's so big!  And you can program it to stop cooking after a certain amount of time and just keep your food warm!).  In fact, this chili was the first thing I made in my shiny new crockpot, which I got for my bridal shower back in June.  And I will be making it again.  Not only am I excited about my slow cooker; I am excited about this chili!!!!  4 exclamation points excited!  (I sound like an episode of Seinfeld).

Let's talk about the vegetables, first.  Black beans, red and green bell peppers, grated carrot, onion, garlic and corn.  This is no meat and tomato chili, my friends.  Lots of delicious vegetables in there, not to mention the flavor of chili powder, cayenne pepper, cumin and oregano.  And then there's the quinoa.  You throw it in raw, and yet somehow it still cooks perfectly into little nutty bites of protein. It was a genius way to fix the fact that somehow I had three bags of quinoa in the pantry.  It helps to give the chili a little more texture, too.

I was really excited about this chili, in case you can't tell.  It's so easy: just throw everything in there and turn the slow cooker on.  You're eating chili in no time.  Mark was a big fan of this chili; as he usually does with chili, his favorite way to eat it is to dip into it with tortilla chips.  Whether you eat it out of a bowl (or a Tupperware - this reheats wonderfully) or off a chip, just promise me you will give this chili a shot.  You don't have to love quinoa, you just have to love flavorful, delicious chili!

One note: this recipe is vegan, so it calls for vegan toppings like a sour cream made of cashews (I'm not going to post the recipe for that, but if you are interested, click the link to the original recipe!).  You can do that if you so choose, but feel free to stir in real sour cream and cheddar cheese!  I actually found that the chili didn't need any toppings, but top to your heart's desire.


vegan crockpot quinoa and black bean chili
from Jessica in the Kitchen
serves 4 - 5

2 1/4 cups vegetable broth
1/2 cup uncooked quinoa
15-ounce can black beans
1/2 container 28-ounce diced tomatoes
1/4 cup chopped red bell pepper
1/4 cup chopped green bell pepper
1 shredded carrot
1/2 onion, chopped
2 gloves garlic
1/2 small chili pepper
2 teaspoons chili powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon oregano
1/2 cup corn kernels
optional toppings:
chopped avocado
chopped green onions
shredded carrot
cheddar cheese and sour cream


1) Add the broth, quinoa, black beans and tomatoes to the slow cooker.  Stir to combine.

2) Next, add the peppers, carrot, onion and garlic, and stir.  Then add the rest of the seasonings and stir a few times to combine.

3) Set the slow cooker to high for 2 1/2 to 3 hours, or on low for 5 - 6 hours.  For high, monitor the last 30 minutes, and for low, monitor the last hour.

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