I really want to have a cute little anecdote to share or some sort of spin to take on this story, but so far I have found myself typing about 1) Our trip to the zoo yesterday and how my daughter was most excited to see the spiders and how I am borderline arachnophobe and 2) The fact that we cancelled DISH Network last year, and what with the Seahawks and the Golden Globes this past weekend, well, no live TV kind of sucked. But otherwise we are a happy Roku family.
Neither subject, clearly, is particularly scintillating, so … backspace, backspace, backspace, chili. I’ll just talk about this Crock Pot Buffalo Cauliflower Chili, because I’m just plain out of any other good ideas. Writer’s block: it’s a real thing.
This time of year is such a conundrum. I’m over the sugary sweets of the holidays, but it’s also a bit of a last hurrah before the fresh start of the New Year. I’d like to think this recipe sort of hits a happy medium. It’s comfort food for sure, but it’s also super, duper healthy. It kind of makes me feel like I’m sneaking in one more heavy meal in before I change my ways forever, but really, it’s a nice healthy jump start on my resolutions.
Today over on Potluck by Oh My Veggies, I’m sharing this recipe for Chili Mac.
Chili – with its endless variations and, more often than not, the inclusion of protein-rich beans – lends itself perfectly to vegetarian diets. And the Crock Pot is the perfect place to brew up a warm, hearty vat of chili. And so I thought, hey! I should do a round-up of slow cooker vegetarian chili recipes!
We are up to our ears in firewood right now. A giant, half-dead hemlock towered over our new place, and I, ever the worrywart, wanted it down immediately after we moved in.
So the professionals climbed up and it came down. And we were left with wood. Lots and lots of wood.
We rented a log splitter and my guy, my brother, my nephew, and my sister spent the majority of yesterday taming the giant rounds – some were coffee-table-sized, I’m not kidding – into manageable hunks of firewood. Me, well, I primarily took up residence inside, working on chili recipes, including this one – Crock Pot Pumpkin Red Lentil Chili.
I am in DIY heaven/hell. Pinterest is my best friend/worst enemy. Making our new house feel like a home is such fun/utterly exhausting.
I’m a little conflicted. Can you tell?
I really am thrilled we were able to make the leap into our new home, and we ended up in such a great place, too. Totally worth it. It’s just a little overwhelming and I want the entire place to feel like home NOW.
This vegetarian butternut squash and beer chili absolutely, 100% helps. Chili could not be more cozy and homey if it tried.
Pumpkin chili has been around for at least a few years. In the beginning of my awareness that such a thing existed, I thought, as I suspect many do, “Pumpkin? In chili? That’s weird.”
Then I tried it. Not half bad, I thought. Still a little weird, but also sort of perfect too. Perfect weird. A harbinger of fall, pumpkin, along with pretty much the best spicy, hearty dish to serve on a cold, frosty October evening? Not such a crazy idea, maybe.
So I worked on it. I tweaked and poked and made countless versions of pumpkin chili, all the while really coming around to this stuff. It’s so, so perfectly delicious.
We’ve been on vacation this week, so creating in the kitchen has been on the back burner. So to speak.
Well, I did make one thing. I whipped up a vegetarian version of Campfire Beans. I halved the recipe, and they still lasted us for days. And… suffice it to say we are OVER eating beans for awhile.
And actually, this recipe, too, has beans in chili form. But that’s okay. Beans are usually great … unless you’ve had them for lunch and dinner three days in a row.
This recipe is from my other blog, The Hazel Bloom, where I started sharing some of our “One Dish Two Ways” recipes before I decided to create a blog all about it.
We grew up calling this dish Straw Hats, but I’ve also heard it called “Frito Pie” or “Chili Pie.” Chili, cheese, lettuce and all the fixings atop a layer of Fritos… oh yeah. And oh-so easy.
We’re headed to Sonoma for a mini vacation, so I thought I’d share this recipe for easy Cheesy Chili Mac from the archives of my other blog, The Hazel Bloom. I posted this one long before I decided to start a blog all about this kind of recipe and our mixed-diet lives – aka, our Kitchen Treaty. :)
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Some dinners lack a little, shall I say, class… but more than make up for it in tasty, dig-innable, comforting pure deliciousness.
I think we can all be pretty clear on which side we’ll find Crock Pot Easy Cheesy Chili Mac. Elegant it’s not. Yummy? Oooooh yes. It’s comfort food at its best, perfect for a blustery rainy night after a long, long day. If you’re feeding others, I can almost guarantee there will be happy mid-bite groans and proclamations of your amazing kitchen talent; and then lots of happy full-bellied cuddling on the couch after dinner. Actually, this will also happen when you’re by yourself. It’s practically involuntary.
It didn’t really occur to me how much we like chili in this house – and how much I must make it – until I realized that this is the third chili recipe I’ve posted here in as many months.
I guess there are worse things to be a little obsessed with.
This healthy vegetarian white chili is among my favorites. White kidney beans and hearty pinto beans simmer together with a rich vegetable broth, green chiles, diced fresh jalapeno pepper, and warming, comforting spices like cumin, oregano, and – believe it or not – a little touch of ground cloves. Add in some chopped cooked chicken at the end of the process, and – look! – vegetarians and carnivores can live together.
This week, I’m all about coffee. What does coffee have to do with chili, you ask – and especially bulgur chili (and what the heck is bulgur, anyway)?
Well, I’ll tell ya. This warm, comforting chili is made all the more robust with some good solid glugs of nice, strong coffee. The addition of coffee, along with a little brown sugar and a spoonful of unsweetened cocoa, makes this chili indecently delicious.
I’ve tried many, many variations on chili over the years. Super simple chili, chili with a gazillion ingredients, chili with “secret ingredients” like unsweetened cocoa or brewed coffee (both very good, actually). But this chili recipe is the one that’s been floating around on a piece of paper with the title of “THE Chili.” My guy took a bite of his version (with meat) and said, “This is it. You can stop at this one. It’s perfect.”