So the following conversation happened when I opened my crockpots (SHAMELESS PLUG: naming contest still going on–I’ve had some great suggestions, but it’s not too late to put your 2 cents in!). Ahem, where was I? Oh yeah: conversation (loosely transcribed):
ME: thank you! I can’t wait to use it
CHRISTI: what are you going to make?
Not sure yet. Chili, maybe, yeah…chili
You don’t need a crockpot to make chili
No, but it still would be amazing
Now, I should interject here that Christi’s mother has THE best chili recipe, but Christi was right. I didn’t neeeeeeeeed my new crockpot to make chili. Alright, back to Pinterest. My mission: a crock pot chili recipe that looking tasty & interesting. I found this recipe from kitchentreaty.com
Okay, so…THE first I noticed: no meat–a slight pause for a raised-on-a-Texas-cattle-ranch girl like me, but under the motto of I’ll try anything once and the fact that it just sounds amazing, I figured what the heck! Plus when you read about kitchentreaty.com it is a great site dedicated to cooking for vegetarians and omnivores who cohabitate/marry/hangout/party/etc (I mean, she explains it more eloquently than that–I’m just cutting to the chase so we can get to the chili!).
Almost everyone I know who enjoys cooking or baking and finds a new recipe, follows the recipe the first time and then if they feel adventurous the next time adds their own spin on it. Not me, because…well…I just have an inability to leave well enough alone. Plus I personally feel that all great chili recipes need some beer thrown in (even the aforementioned best chili recipe). As I was looking down the list of ingredients–I ain’t gonna lie–I did a few double-takes on some of the spices, but I promised myself that I would only allow myself to swap out 1 cup of beer for 1 cup of veggie stock. I’d like to interject here that I personally feel that any one who considers her/himself a chili aficionado might balk at some of the ingredients. Albeit from the beer, I did not stray from the recipe. That in and of itself is shocking. Next time, though, I’m adding more jalapenos (as she suggested). I only added one because it was making me cry while cutting and I figured that was probably hot enough. Alas, no. You can taste the jalapeno, but none of the heat.
Served with cornbread & Shiner Cheer (the beer I used), my tummy was very, very happy. VERDICT: if you are vegetarian, looking for a change of chili pace, or looking for a less expensive chili–this is definitely one to add to your recipe book! Btw, if you follow her recipe–linked above–it’s vegan and gluten-free, you know if you’re into those kinds of kinky things ;- ) Thanks kitchentreaty!
Crock Pot Pumpkin Red Lentil Chili
- 1/2 cup of chopped yellow onion
- 1-2 jalapenos
- 2 15-oz cans of kidney beans, drained
- 1 cup pumpkin puree (make sure you get puree and not pumpkin pie filling!)
- 1 cup red lentils
- 2 15-oz cans of fire-roasted tomatoes
- 1 cup of veggie broth
- 1 cup of beer (whatever you may have on-hand, but I’d stay away from dark beers, like Guinness, as I think the flavor would be too overpowering)
- 1 Tbsp of chili powder
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon (yeah, cinnamon–keep reading down!)
- 1/8 tsp cloves
- 1 Tbsp cocoa powder (that’s right. chocolate and a whoooooole tablespoon!)
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tsp cumin
Add all the ingredients to a 3-quart or larger crock pot and stir. Cook on high for 4-5 hours (mine took right at 5 hours) or on low for 8-10 hours (are you kidding, who can wait that long?!?!?!?!) until lentils are done and chili is thick and hearty. Serve with assorted toppings (I used cilantro).
It was delicious and good for you–perfect for a chili-weather kinda day!!