If you are looking to lose weight and/or perform better in the gym and you don’t have your nutrition dialed in, you will plateau very quickly. The easiest way to stay on top of your diet is to prep meals for the week or at least the next couple of days, or else you could find yourself going for what's easy and convenient, which usually isn’t going to be the best option for your diet. There are obviously limitless options for meal prepping, but one dish I’ve been eating quite a bit of on the go lately is chili.
In my last post, I listed several versatile carbs that are low in calories and make great cornerstones to any dish. One of my favorites is beans, as they are very high in protein, fiber, and numerous vitamins and minerals. Cooking up a big pot of chili is a super easy and tasty way to have meals for the entire week, and makes for a very filling yet relatively moderate calorie dish so long as you don’t add too many toppings like sour cream and cheese.
1 pound ground chili meat
1 pound ground chicken
2 diced onions
1 can fire-roasted tomatoes
1 can tomato sauce
1 tablespoon fire-roasted chili garlic powder
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 teaspoons cumin
1/2 tablespoon garlic salt
1/2 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1/2 tablespoon cayenne (or to taste)
1/2 tablespoon red pepper flakes
1 can dark kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 can pumpkin puree
Salt and pepper to taste
Sauté the onions in a large pan in 2 tablespoons of olive oil with salt and pepper until they’re soft. Next add in the meat and chicken and cook until no longer pink. Then add all the seasonings, followed by the fire roasted tomatoes, tomato sauce and pumpkin purée. Let simmer on low covered for 30 min, stirring occasionally. Finally add the beans and simmer another 20 min, stirring occasionally.
The pumpkin puree really gives this chili a distinct flavor, as well as a slightly different consistency. We did a mix of meats, but you can use whatever you like. Lean ground turkey or 96/4 ground beef would be a much lower calorie alternative to the chili meat. Top with reduced fat cheese, a scoop of Greek yogurt and some hot sauce and enjoy! This makes a ton of chili so you should have plenty of leftovers for the week.
Join The Chopping Block for the demonstration class Cold Weather Soups and Stews this Sunday, March 11 at 10am at Lincoln Square to learn how to make hearty, satisfying recipes from all over the world.
Want more tips for making better chili? Get The Chopping Block's 5 tips for better chili.