If you’re cooking from your store cupboards, can you still be healthy? With this recipe, yes. This hearty vegetarian chilli is great for batch cooking and can be served 8 different ways, meaning that although you will have multiple servings of it in the freezer, you won’t tire of eating it.
Vegetarian chilli recipes tend to rely too heavily on beans and eating them can be a bit one-note. The texture of this high fibre chilli is far more varied because it has lentils, beans and another ingredient like rice or barley (I favour the barley. Nice and chewy.) It contains a tablespoon of cocoa powder which adds something novel to the flavour profile, something I like but can’t describe (you’ll have to make it yourself.)
What I like most about this recipe is it’s versatility. As someone who often works from home, lunch is usually an after-thought, but if I’ve remembered to defrost a small serving of chilli from the freezer, I feel wonderfully smug and well-prepared. I can serve it in very many different ways alongside whatever I happen to have in the house. Most often this is on a tortilla bread with cheese, avocado and tomato. Messy but there’s no-one there to watch me and it tastes amazing. It’s also nice with rice, or over nachos. A shared bowl of nachos is a delicious communal experience, but they’re pretty unhealthy. Less so if you add some of this chilli beneath the melted cheese.
I’ve adapted this recipe from one by vegetarian chef Anna Jones. If you prefer your chilli with meat, I have a great one by the Hairy Bikers elsewhere on this website. Lately I’ve been making it with turkey mince and it’s every bit as delicious.