Smoky Lentil and Quinoa Chili

Deidra Nelson, MS, RDN, LDN
Photo: Deidra Nelson, MS, RDN, LDN

Nothing says cozy like a good bowl of chili on a cold day. This Smoky Lentil and Quinoa Chili is hearty and filling and comes together in a slow cooker. It gets its smokiness from Spanish smoked paprika and chili pepper salsa. Just like any chili, it freezes well and takes little effort in the kitchen. Lentils are a great source of plant-based protein, high in fiber and naturally low in saturated fat. Quinoa is a whole grain and is also a good source of plant protein. Personally, I can’t eat chili without cornbread, but add your own toppings and sides as you please.

The good in this? This chili is 100 percent plant-based. Plant-based diets have been shown to lower the risk heart disease, obesity and certain cancers. Aim to incorporate more meatless meals throughout the week!

Smoky Lentil and Quinoa Chili

Serves 6 to 8

Ingredients

  • 1 cup red quinoa
  • 1 cup green lentils
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • ½ medium onion, diced
  • ½ bell pepper, chopped
  • 12 ounces frozen corn
  • 1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • ½ tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • Chili pepper salsa and fresh cilantro for garnish

Instructions

  1. Place all ingredients into a slow cooker. Stir to combine.
  2. Cover with lid and cook on low for 4 to 5 hours.
  3. To serve, portion about 1½ cups in a bowl and top with salsa and cilantro.
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Deidra Nelson
Deidra Nelson, MS, RDN, LDN, is a community dietitian based in Memphis. Her nutrition philosophy focuses on finding the good in everything you eat. Read her blog at destinationmoderation.com. Follow her on Instagram.