Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Wholesome and Healthy Spicy Lentil Chili

Hello hello! Hope all of you are doing well and enjoying the beginnings of all things Fall! This is by far my favorite time of year! I love the holidays that are spent with loved ones, I love the beautiful weather, and I love the food!  Soups being at the top of that list. In this chili I use lentils, which are a powerhouse of health and nutrition. Lentils are a legume and grow similar to peas in a pod. And do you ever get this lovely question from your friends.. "Where do you get your protein?" Well us veggie eaters get our protein from many natural sources. Did you know that lentils are 26% protein?!  And they are also packed with folic acid, soluble and insoluble dietary fiber, high levels of vitamins A and B vitamins, and are one of the highest sources of antioxidants found in the winter growing legumes!  Some other awesome health facts of the humble little lentil are...
  • The type of fiber they have reduces cholesterol
  • Good for those with diabetes- the fiber in lentils traps carbohydrates, which slows the digestion of them, which prevents wild swings in blood sugar levels
  • so so good for digestion, and constipation issues, again, because of all that fiber!
  • Really great for weight loss! Keep you full longer and the insoluble fiber passes through you virtually intact which means low calorie but filling!
  • A study at the Department of Nutrition at Harvard has shown that there is a link between diets high in lentils and reduced risks of breast cancer
  • Linked to reduced risk of coronary heart disease

Oh Lentils, how I love you! You keep me energized and healthy!  There are several different varieties of lentils. I chose for this recipe to use 2 different colors, but you can use whatever kind you get. This is a soup that will nourish you and warm your belly and soul this time of year! Enjoy friends, and now lets go make some soup!

Wholesome and Healthy Spicy Lentil Chili
Serves 6-8

What you will need:
4 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 yellow onion, diced
3 stalks of celery, diced
2 carrots, diced
5 cloves of garlic, minced

1 red bell pepper, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 Anaheim chili, seeded and diced (if you are sensitive to spicy food, just leave this pepper out)

1 Tbsp. cumin
1 Tbsp. chili powder
1 Tbsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. paprika
1 Tbsp. maple syrup
1 tsp. blackstrap molasses
2 1/2  boxes (just estimate) of vegetable broth/stock (using the 32-ounce boxes)
1 14.5 ounce can tomato sauce
a few tsp. salt (to taste)
2 cups of lentils, I used 1 cup of red lentils, and one cup of french lentils
Vegan sour cream
tortilla chips to dunk in the soup

To make the soup:
Heat olive oil over medium high heat in a large soup pot. Add the onion, celery, carrot, and garlic with a pinch of salt and pepper and saute for about 5 minutes until softened..Add in your bell peppers and Anaheim chili with another pinch of salt and pepper and saute for a few more minutes. Add in all the spices, vegetable broth, tomato sauce, 1 Tbsp. maple syrup, 1 tsp. blackstrap molasses, a couple tsp. of salt, and lentils and stir well. Bring to a boil, and them simmer for about 35 minutes or until the lentils are soft and tender. Taste the broth after it is finished cooking and adjust salt and pepper to taste.

To Serve:
Ladle soup into bowl. Top with a dollop of vegan sour cream and chips either crumbled on top, or served on the side for dipping! YUM!


  1. Love this - I never think to use lentils in chili.

  2. Now that it's getting cooler - chili sounds oh so good! Love that you included lentils instead of the usual beans - can't wait to try!

  3. Oh Lentils...I love you too!! And I love YOU! This looks amazing. Lentil soup is one of my favs!!! Adding the Mo spice to it was a nice touch!!!

    I've never seen vegan sour cream!!!???? I need it!!! Where can I find it..whole foods??

    Happy packing, girlfriend! SO excited for your move! Hope it's stress-free!!! XO

  4. ...I meant a nice touch to make it a chili...you know what I meant ;-)

  5. Great idea to use lentils in chili, it looks so hearty and yummy! When it gets a little colder, I'm going to give it a try. :-)

  6. Morgan, this Lentil Chili looks amazing!! We love chili and this recipe ingredients look really delicious. I will be making this very soon:) Love you.

  7. I eat a Lentil Soup at a local restaurant that is thick like Chili. This recipe might help me get closer to recreating that. Even though it's 80 degrees outside today, it feels like Chili weather.

  8. I love lentils! This is such a delicious idea to use them in chili!

  9. I am so happy that it is fall now and I can pull out the Slow Cooker and make everything in "The Indian Slow Cooker" book again!! Love the colder weather and making super spicy legumes......Like the idea of a Lentil Chili!

  10. This is the absolute best vegan meal I've ever made. I find it hard to make really good vegan comfort food, but this takes the cake. Loved it. Thanks for the great recipe!

  11. Loved it too! My non vegan boyfriend said it was delicious, we ate some three nights in a row this week! Thank you for this amazing recipe.

  12. Your blog header is too cute and this chili looks amazing!!! I am definitely following you now :-) Can't wait to come back for more!

  13. I am making this today, GREETINGS FROM THE NETHERLANDS