Winter has officially arrived, and I don't know about you, but winter makes me feel like curling up under a cozy blanket next to a fire with a mug of hot cocoa and not coming out until spring. But because most of us can't realistically do that (myself included), there's chili.
Chili is one of my all time favorite foods, and lucky for me, my husband and daughter love it just about as much as I do. We make a pot up just about every week in the winter time, and I love the versatility. Sometimes we make a more traditional version, but often we mix it up with one of my nontraditional variations like my smoky turkey chickpea chili, or this bean-free beef and butternut squash recipe, perfect for the cold winter months. It uses simple seasonal ingredients with a couple secret ingredients (you'll see). Just try it out-- you can thank me later.
Beef and Butternut Squash Chili (bean-free)
1 lb grass-fed ground beef 1 tbsp avocado oil 1 onion, diced 1 clove garlic, minced
1 bell pepper, diced 3 cups peeled and diced butternut squash 1 can organic diced tomatoes 1 tbsp chili powder 2 tsp cocoa powder 2 tsp cumin 1 tsp oregano 1/2 tsp cinnamon 1/2 tsp paprika 1/2 tsp coriander 1/2 tsp sea salt (more as needed) 1 cup beef broth or water green onions and cilantro, to top
1. Brown beef in a large saute pan until no longer pink.
2. In a large soup pot, heat avocado oil to medium high heat. Add onion, garlic and bell pepper and cook until translucent.
3. Add browned beef to pot along with butternut squash, diced tomatoes, cocoa powder and all spices. Stir to combine.
4. Bring to a simmer, and cook, covered, on medium low heat for 1-2 hours (if not more). Test butternut squash to ensure doneness. Add beef stock or water as needed to reach desired consistency. Taste for seasoning and serve.
Slow Cooker option:
1. Add all ingredients to slow cooker and cook for 7-9 hours on low.
Taste for seasoning and serve.
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