Vegetarian Quinoa Chili with Honey Cornbread Muffins

This is hands down my favorite chili recipe and I’ve tried a lot!  It’s vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free.  You can add ground beef to the recipe, but because of the quinoa it’s already very hearty.  With the Fall weather, this chili is the perfect recipe to warm and fill your belly!


Start by making your quinoa.  Make sure to rinse it first.


I like to cook mine in vegetable broth for extra flavor, but water works, too.


Cook over medium heat until liquid is absorbed…about 15 minutes and set aside.


In a large pot, heat olive oil on high heat and add the onion.  Cook around 5 minutes until tender.


Then add the garlic, jalapeno, carrot, celery, peppers, and zucchini.  Cook for 10 minutes until veggies are tender.


While they’re cooking, get your beans and tomatoes ready.


Rinse and drain your beans.


Then add the beans, diced tomatoes, and tomato sauce to your pot.


Stir in the cooked quinoa.


Add the chili powder, cumin, and salt and pepper to taste.


Let simmer on low for at least 30 minutes and enjoy!



1/2 cup quinoa, rinsed
1 cup vegetable broth or water
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 jalapeno pepper, diced (optional)
1 large carrot, peeled and chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 medium zucchini, chopped
2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15 ounce) can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
3 (15 ounce) cans diced tomatoes
1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
3-4 Tablespoons chili powder, depending on your taste (I used 4)
1 Tablespoon ground cumin
Salt and black pepper, to taste

Optional toppings: green onions, avocado slices, cheese, sour cream, Greek yogurt, chips, crackers, etc.


1. In a medium sauce pan, combine the quinoa and vegetable broth. Cook over medium heat until water is absorbed, about 15 minutes. Set aside.

2. In a large pot, heat the olive oil over high heat. Add the onion and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic, jalapeño, carrot, celery, peppers, and zucchini. Cook until vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes.

3. Add the black beans, kidney beans, tomatoes, and tomato sauce. Stir in the cooked quinoa. Season with chili powder, cumin, salt, and black pepper. Simmer chili on low for at least 30 minutes. I try to let mine simmer for an hour.  Serve warm.

Note-garnish the chili with green onions, avocado slices, cheese, sour cream/Greek yogurt, chips, crackers, if desired. This chili freezes well.


Honey Cornbread 

This isn’t really a recipe.  It uses a mix, but it’s a great mix and I doctor it up so it tastes homemade.  Here’s the cast of characters…



Krusteaz Honey Cornbread and Muffin Mix

2/3 cup milk

1/3 cup vegetable oil (or melted butter)

1 egg

1 cup creamed corn

1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese

Optional: 2 Tablespoons diced jalapeno


Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Prepare one package Krusteaz Honey Cornbread & Muffin Mix as directed, adding 1 cup (8 3/4 oz can) creamed corn, 1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese and 2 tablespoons diced jalapeños.

8x8x2 or 9x9x2-inch pan: 22-26 minutes.

12 standard muffins: 14-16 minutes.



Recipe adapted from two peas & their pod.

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