Winter Vegetarian Chili

Vegetarian Chili

We got our first snowstorm here in Philly last weekend. Everyone say hey to Jonas, which called for a snow-day Saturday chili cook-off session.

With plenty of time to slow down and savor, into the pot went every veggie and spice that makes chili shine, and onto the timer went plenty of minutes.

Vegetarian Chili

Snow brings time to chill. Time to chill brings patience. And patience brings flavor-making magic.

If you’ve got the minutes to spare, let this merger of ingredients mix and mingle for at least 45 minutes. The more time you give it, the more infusion of flavor in every bite you’ll receive.

In fact, it probably reaches its best not the night upon serving but in your bowl the next day.

Patience is a delicious virtue.

Vegetarian Chili

Serve over brown rice with some cheddar, on the sharp side, and/or fresh herbs. And if you seek to level up the whole experience, add a square of warm, buttered cornbread on a plate to its side.

We’ll thank Jonas for this one.

Winter Vegetarian Chili

Yield: 6 servings


  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 1 (8 oz.) pkg. baby portobellos, sliced
  • 1/2 lg Kabocha squash, peeled and cubed
  • 1 Tbsp. thyme
  • 1 Tbsp. cumin
  • 2 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp. cayenne
  • 1-2 tsp. salt (depending on whether you buy beans with sodium or no sodium)
  • 1 (15 oz.) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 (15 oz.) can chickpeas, drained
  • 1 (15 oz) can kidney beans (don't drain)
  • 1/2 (15 oz) can dark red kidney beans
  • 1/2 lg. bunch of kale, chopped.
  • Medium or sharp cheddar cheese (omit if vegan)
  • Small bunch of cilantro
  • 2 cups brown rice, cooked according to pkg. directions


  1. Heat olive oil over medium high in a large pot. Add garlic, onion and bell pepper. Saute 5-8 minutes, or until onions near translucent. Add mushrooms. Continue to saute for another 5 minutes. Stir in squash, tomatoes, thyme, cumin, chili powder, cayenne and salt. Saute for 3 minutes.
  2. Add drained chickpeas, entire contents of kidney beans can, and red kidney beans with half of their liquid. Bring chili to a low simmer. Let cook for at least 45 minutes for flavors to infuse and enhance. Stir in kale, and let cook uncovered (unless chili is already thick enough; then keep covered), for 8-10 minutes, or until kale is tender.
  3. Serve chili atop rice. Top with a crumble of cheese, if using, and a handful of cilantro.

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1 Comment

  • Reply
    Sarah | Well and Full
    January 31, 2016 at 5:14 pm

    Chili is the perfect food to make during a snowstorm! It’s so warming and nourishing!

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