This Butternut Squash Vegetarian Chilli is a true winter warmer – spicy, hearty and filling. And it doesn’t need to cook for very long so it makes a convenient weeknight dinner too. Roasting the butternut squash rather than cooking it in the chilli really brings out all the sweet honey notes in this wonderful vegetable, which offsets the sharp flavour of the tomato sauce. This aromatic dish is a combination of spicy, sweet and sour flavours, which work together really well.
This chilli recipe is gluten free and vegan. It is gluten free simply because I haven’t used any flour to thicken the sauce but instead mashed up the kidney beans a little (using a potato masher), which produced a nice thick sauce so the flour wasn’t needed (see the instructions below). The recipe itself is vegan unless you serve it with yogurt, sour cream or Skyr.
What’s Skyr, I hear you ask.
Well, if you live in Iceland you are probably very familiar with Skyr, but here in the UK it is quite a new product (unless I’ve not been paying proper attention and only noticed it a few months ago) but it’s available absolutely everywhere. According to various online sources I’ve consulted Skyr is a cultured dairy product which has been made in Iceland for hundreds of years (Iceland’s best kept secret?). It is fat free (or very low-fat), full of protein and calcium, and made with reduced sugar. I read all this on the package in the shop, got excited and bought it immediately. Well, when I tasted it at home I got super excited because it tasted great and had a wonderfully rich and creamy texture (with 0 fat!). A bit like Greek yogurt, thick and creamy, but without the fat. A bit like quark, too, but not as acidic. Better. I use it all the time now!
No, I am not being paid to be this excited about a product, I just really like it:)
Anyway, back to the chilli!
Serve this Butternut Squash Vegetarian Chilli with chopped avocado and lemon zest (highly recommended!), with rice or pita bread, or simply on its own. Adjust the amount of the chili powder to suit your taste. It tastes even better the next day so make a big batch to enjoy later!
As always, I’d love to know your opinions, so if you make this recipe do get in touch:)
Yields 5-6 portions
15 minPrep Time
30 minCook Time
45 minTotal Time
- 600 g butternut squash, peeled, cubed
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 celery stalk, finely chopped
- 1bay leaf
- 1 red bell pepper, roughly chopped
- 1 green bell pepper, roughly chopped
- 1 tin kidney beans, drained, rinsed
- 1 and 1/2 tin chopped tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon each: fine sea salt, cumin, smoked paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon each: chili powder and allspice powder
- 3 tablespoons each: white wine and olive oil (plus more oil for drizzling the squash)
- 4-5 tablespoons coriander, finely chopped
- Serving suggestions: rice, pita bread, chopped avocado, sour cream, yogurt, Skyr, coriander, lemon zest
- Preheat the oven to 400 F/ 200 C/ gas mark 6. Tip the butternut squash pieces onto a good size baking tray, sprinkle with salt, drizzle with a little oil and bake for 30-35 minutes (until tender and lightly browned).
- In a large pot heat up the oil, add the bay leaf, garlic, onion and celery and fry over a medium heat for 2 minutes stirring often. Add the wine and cook for further 2 minutes. Add the beans and using a potato masher mash them up a little (leave some beans whole - you can omit this step if you like, I like my chilli quite thick). Add the peppers, tomatoes, all the spices, stir, cover and simmer for about 20 minutes.
- Remove from the heat, fold in the butternut squash and coriander. Adjust the seasoning as necessary and serve.