So Frankenstorm is upon us, and much like with last year’s Irene, I’ve seen reactions ranging from STOCK UP AND BUY ALL THE WATER! to COOL YOUR JETS, NOTHING’S GOING TO HAPPEN. I’m leaning towards the latter, but I’ve also seen enough disaster movies to be cautious when it comes to Mother Nature. Mostly, I’m just hoping the office closes. Powers that be, MAKE IT HAPPEN.
My preparedness plan includes chocolate, carbs, and this enormous batch of chili. Yeah, it’s still 60 outside, but there’s nothing better than comfort food when it’s gross outside.
Slow Cooker Vegetarian Chili
- 1 can red kidney beans, drained
- 1 can pinto beans, drained
- 1 can black beans, drained
- 1 bunch celery, finely diced
- 8 oz white mushrooms, chopped
- 1 large carrot, diced
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 jalapeno peppers, finely diced
- 1 green pepper, roasted and chopped
- 1 15 oz can tomatoes in sauce
- 1 tomato paste
- 1 1/2 cups frozen corn
- Spice mix to taste: I used oregano, chili powder, paprika, cayenne, dried basil, cumin, and Sriracha
- Olive oil
- Fill your slow cooker (6-qt) with beans, tomatoes, tomato paste, frozen corn, and peppers. Stir it once until everything is coated. Add the spices and stir again.
- In a saucepan, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook until translucent. Add carrots and cook until they’re just beginning to get soft. Add the celery and cook until both carrots and celery are soft. Dump the onions, carrots, and celery into the slow cooker.
- Cook the mushrooms until browned and tender. Add to the slow cooker. Stir until everything is incorporated.
- Cook on low or high heat depending on when you want to eat.
- Chili is ready to serve when it’s bubbling. Store leftovers in ziploc bags in freezer or in airtight containers in fridge.
Chili is another one of those foods that don’t really need a recipe. What’s listed above is just what I happened to make for this iteration. I love making it in my slow cooker because I can just throw everything in the pot and forget about it. If you make it on the stove, be sure to keep an eye on it and stir it frequently.
To freeze, scoop chili into ziplock bags and flatten so it becomes a thin slab. This prevents freezer burn because there’s no extra air and also saves space when you store it in your freezer. To reheat, fill a small saucepan with just enough water to cover the bottom and break the chili slab into a couple pieces so it fits in your pan. Simmer with the lid on over low heat until it bubbles.
This batch makes an enormous amount, so unless you’ve got tons of mouths to feed, definitely freeze the leftovers away. And with that, you have enough hearty chili to make it through a cold winter night or a triple threat storm monstrosity.