I’m a fan of spicy chili, so this recipe tends to be on the spicier side (according to my roommate). If you’d like to tone it down, halve (or omit) the crushed red pepper. Additionally, you can stir in a spoonful of sugar at a time until the spiciness is adjusted to your liking.
1 15 oz. can black beans (with sauce)
1 15 oz. can kidney beans (rinsed)
1 15 oz. can chick peas (rinsed)
1 C uncooked lentils
1 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
1 6 oz. can tomato paste
1 medium yellow squash (grated or chopped)
1 medium zucchini (grated or chopped)
1 medium onion (grated or chopped)
2 T minced garlic
2 T chili powder
1 T crushed red peppers
1 T ground cumin
1 T oregano
1 tsp sea salt
3 T olive oil
Prepare vegetables and set aside. I like to use the grating plate on my food processor, but if you like a chunkier texture in your chili, then you might like your vegetables chopped or slivered. A grated texture tends to mask the vegetable flavor, if you are cooking for someone who prefers a meatier chili.
In a large stovetop pot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion, squash, and garlic. Sautee 4-5 minutes, until vegetables are soft, but not browned. Reduce heat to medium-low. Add chili powder, crushed red pepper, cumin, sea salt, and oregano. Stir into mix, and continue to heat until fragrant. Add crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, and lentils. Cook for 30 minutes. If chili begins to wildly sputter, then turn the heat down a bit.
Add kidney beans, chick peas, and black beans (remember to include the liquid from the black beans can). Stir, and cook for an additional 20 minutes.
Taste, and adjust spices to your liking. Garnish with sour cream, chives, shredded cheddar cheese, tortilla chips, or all of the above!