When you hear the word 'chili' what comes to mind? Classic beef and kidney bean chili? Green chicken chili? Texas chili? Turkey chili? My personal go-to: Cincinnati chili? I think you get my point...
Everyone has their own take on chili.
The amazing thing about chili is that A) it is really hard to mess up and B) there is an almost endless possibility of variations.
Unless specifically stated as a bowl of vegetable chili, vegetables rarely ever come to mind. I'm going to bet the first thing that comes to mind is meat, followed closely by tomatoes and level of spiciness.
Because this is MY chili - I call the shots. Just to balance out the meat and to make this more hearty without adding beans, I opted to sneak in bell peppers and zucchini (shhhh). Also, as tribute to my hometown chili, I added just a smidgen of cocoa powder. This may sound crazy but it pairs surprisingly well with the chipotle peppers and adobo sauce - think Mexican mole.
If you are having guests over for dinner, or just want a fun and creative way to serve up this chili, instead of serving in a bowl dish it up in bell peppers!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour and 15 minutes
Servings: approximately 6 cups
- 1 cup onion, chopped
- 1 cup bell pepper, chopped
- 1 cup zucchini, chopped
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 tsp garlic
- 1 lb ground buffalo
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1/2 tsp ancho chili powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 cans diced tomatoes
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 chipotle pepper, canned
- 2 tbsp adobo sauce from chipotle peppers
- 1 tbsp cocoa
- 1/2 cup beef broth
- In a large pot, melt butter over medium heat. Add garlic, stirring until fragrant and golden brown, about 2 minutes. Add onions, bell pepper and zucchini, stir and cook until these have sweated out and softened, about 5 minutes.
- Next, add ground buffalo, cumin, paprika, oregano, ancho chili powder and salt. Brown beef, about 5 minutes, continuing to stir and break up while cooking.
- Once the meat has browned, add all remaining ingredients, stirring until well incorporated. Increase heat, bringing chili to a boil. Cover pot, reduce to a simmer and allow to cook for 1 hour.
Special serving note: If you'd like to serve chili stuff in bell peppers, cook chili covered in pot for 30 minutes. Stuff chili into prepared bell peppers and arrange in a baking dish. Cover with aluminum foil and bake in a 350°F oven for the remaining 30 minutes.
Nutritional Information (1 cup)
205 calories - 18 g Protein, 12 g Carbohydrates, 9.5 g Fat