Quinoa Chili, With Tweaks

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Chili served over quinoa is an awesome combination, and that’s exactly what I wanted for dinner yesterday.  But none of the various chili recipes I’ve made in the past sounded quite right.  Then I remembered this awesome recipe from the Cook Vegan Lover blog.

quinoa chili cooking
It has everything I wanted, including classic chili flavors, a touch of heat, and heaps of tasty quinoa.  I wound up tweaking it a little bit for personal taste and to account for ingredients I didn’t have:

  • added 1 cup of chopped colored bell peppers
  • used 2 garlic cloves instead of garlic powder
  • added 1/2 of a fresh minced jalapeño
  • increased the oil to 1 tbsp to accommodate the extra ingredients
  • decreased the cumin to 1/2 tbsp
  • used fire-roasted diced tomatoes instead of the kind with chiles
  • used pinto beans, because I had a craving for them

quinoa chili served
Two big thumbs up for this recipe!  The only thing I would do in the future would be to add more chili powder, basically because I am a huge fiend for chili powder.  Everything else was perfect.  I’m a fan of the flavor of fire-roasted tomatoes in chili, and I like the curious overtones that cocoa powder brings to the mix.  The quinoa makes for a thick, hearty chili that, as my mom remarked, “looks like chili”–so you could definitely feed this to omnis and get a postivie response.

quinoa chili with cornbread
While the chili was cooking, I whipped up a batch of cornbread from The Joy of Vegan Baking since I hadn’t tried that particular recipe yet.  It uses a combination of nondairy milk and white vinegar to make “buttermilk,” which I used to do with regular milk before I went vegan.  It’s a neat trick and makes the texture of the finished product very much like something made with actual buttermilk!  I swapped the sugar with maple syrup and it was delicious.  Crusty outside, moist inside…we’ll be snacking on this in my house for a while!


About the Author:

Sam has been eating a plant-based diet since summer of 2009 and has spent the subsequent years experimenting with all manner of plant-based food. She holds a Certificate in Plant-Based Nutrition from the T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies and is a graduate of the Bauman College Nutrition Consultant Program. She is a former member of Toastmasters International and was awarded a Competent Communicator designation for public speaking. When she's not blogging or cooking, Sam likes to read and study the Bible, play silly card games and knit socks.
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