As I type, I am full. Way … too … full.
That should tell you pretty much everything there is to know about this vegetarian chili recipe that I’m going to review for you today. There’s nothing like a hot bowl of rich, spicy chili to warm you up on a fall evening!
This was another Pinterest find, and is listed as a “slow cooker” recipe, which was why I pinned it to begin with. It is actually a recipe from Aggie’s Kitchen and was posted earlier this month. I was really excited for this recipe because finding good vegetarian recipes for the slow cooker is pretty hard, and I LIVED by the slow cooker when I was making straight-up meat meals.
Wouldn’t you know it? I’ve since killed my slow cooker, so I had to try to adapt this recipe to do over the stove top, which really wasn’t too difficult. Here are a couple of the adjustments I made to the recipe, mainly to suit my own preferences:
1) I added about 6 oz of tomato paste, as while the dish was cooking, it saw it was kind of soupy. I prefer a chili with thicker consistency, so the tomato paste just helped to thicken things up a bit.
2) I added about 1 tsp of smoked paprika and 1/2 tsp of chipotle flakes to give a smoky depth to the chili. The cumin helps for that, but those two elements just helped the cumin along a bit, and the chipotle also adds a spicy kick that I enjoy.
Otherwise, this recipe was really perfect. The above two adjustments are not due to any flaw in the recipe, because it’s really just genius. I love the texture and flavor the quinoa and lentils together add, and the nutritional oomph they give is out of this world.
And, the dish is VERY filling. So … GOOD! Just as wonderful is the fact that this recipe is really easy. While it takes some time because you need to cook the lentils and quinoa through, the prep itself is very fast, and it’s a wonderful “dump it and leave it” kind of recipe. Perfect for a busy weekend or weekday (if you, unlike me, actually take good care of your things) for slow-cooker cooking.
So, here’s Aggie’s Chili, with my additions included in parentheses:
Aggie’s Slow Cooker Lentil and Quinioa Chili (Adapted for stove top cooking):
1 onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 celery stalk, chopped
2 bell peppers, chopped
1 15 oz can diced tomatoes
(6 oz tomato paste)
4 cups vegetable broth
1 (cup) water
1 cup dried lentils
1 15 oz can Bush’s Pinto Beans
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 teaspoons cumin
1 tablespoon oregano
(1 tsp smoked paprika)
(1/2 tsp chipotle pepper flakes)
(1 tsp salt)
1/2 cup uncooked quinoa
Put all ingredients together into large sauce pot over medium heat. Stir occasionally until the mixture bubbles. Turn down the heat to low and cover with lid. I cooked this dish for about 2 hours until all the lentils and quinoa were cooked through.
Serve with a dollop of sour cream and shredded cheese (or vegan equivalent to keep the dish vegan!)