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Meatless Monday: 3-Bean Chili

May 9, 2011

The weather around here has been crazy this spring! We’ve had snowstorms, deadly tornadoes, torrential rain and flooding, all mixed in with unseasonably warm and cool temperatures. The past week has been rainy and cool, and I’ve been making a lot of soups and chili to warm myself.

I found this recipe in a Parent’s magazine a while back, and was skeptical as to whether or not the kids would eat it. They love chili, but I feared the extra veggies might scare them off. Lately, they have been vegetable-eating champs, and even Elliott is eating raw carrots without the bribe of copious amounts of peanut butter to dip them in. I’m so proud of my adventurous eaters! It seemed like the perfect time to test it out, and they ate it up! The recipe is quick & easy, makes for a great weeknight meal, and you can do canned or home-prepared beans – whichever you prefer.


  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 medium-sized onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled & chopped
  • 2-3 Tbsp. chili powder (I went with the lesser for the kids)
  • 2 sweet bell peppers, cored and diced (I left these out because I didn’t have any on hand)
  • 1 medium-sized zucchini, diced
  • 1 – 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes
  • 1 –  8 oz. can tomato sauce (no-salt preferred)
  • ¼ c. ketchup
  • ½ tsp. dried oregano
  • 1 – 15 oz. can black beans, drained & rinsed
  • 1 – 15 oz. can small white beans, drained & rinsed (I used great northern beans)
  • 1 – 15 oz. can red kidney beans


  1. Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onion, garlic and chili powder and cook for 3 minutes.
  2. Add the peppers and zucchini and cook another 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Stir in tomatoes, tomato sauce, ketchup, and oregano. Cook for another 8 minutes, stirring often.
  4. Gently stir in the beans. Cover the pot and cook for another 5-8 minutes, or until heated through.
  5. Serve over whole wheat elbow macaroni for chili-mac, and top with sour cream, cheese, onions, or anything else that tastes lovely with chili!
  6. Enjoy!!!
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