I love chili but haven't gotten around to making a purely paleo and whole30 version. Well the time is now! For those who are strict and omit legumes on a regular basis - this one is for you!
Sunday night was the night to perfect this chili. I had previously made different versions but wanted to try a little spin on it. I've had a pretty serious obsession with chipotle peppers lately and decided that along with some cocoa powder and cinnamon, this would elevate the chili. Glass of wine in hand, music playing, I got to work. It was a relaxing Sunday night, dinner would be finished early and I felt an overall sense of calm. Ahhhh such rare moments.
That was until I took a bite to check for the seasoning. Clearly I overestimated the level of heat just one tsp of chipotle would add. Sure it tasted great but was in no way suitable for little mouths. Panic crept in, and the words "when will dinner be ready" resounded from the other room..over and over. Scrambling, I realized I bought an extra pack of ground beef. Perhaps for another recipe? Didn't matter. I couldn't think about that.
Since this chili is full of veggies, I used the help of my trusty food processor to do the work for me. And there, on this lovely Sunday evening, I was making two chilis. Quite proud of myself for the swift rescue, I managed to have dinner done in a reasonable time.
If you want to tone down the heat, you can play around with the level of heat. For the kids, I decided to omit the chipotle powder entirely and stuck to only chili powder. For a little more heat, feel free to use one teaspoon of chipotle or if you like it really hot, go for 2 or more. The choice is yours.
paleo chili stuffed sweet potatoes
prep time: 10 minutes
cooking time: 40-45 minutes
yields: 8 servings
1 onion roughly chopped
1 red pepper roughly cut
3 medium carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp olive oil + more for potatoes
1 lb grass fed beef
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp chipotle chili powder (optional)
3 tsp chili powder
1 tbsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
3/4 tsp salt divided
1/4 tsp pepper
1 15 oz can tomato sauce
1 15 oz can diced or petite diced tomatoes
1 tbsp maple syrup (omit if whole30)
1 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped plus more for garnish
4 medium sweet potatoes
avocado for topping
optional: purple cabbage
food processor (optional)
dutch oven or large soup pan
Preheat oven to 400. Rinse and dry sweet potatoes. With a fork, poke holes in each potato all around. Lay each potato on a piece of foil and brush with a few drops of olive oil. Wrap in foil tightly and bake for an hour or until potatoes are soft. This depends on size.
Add pepper, carrot and onion to food processor and pulse until the vegetables are fairly small. If you don't want to use a food processor, just chop these small.
Preheat dutch oven and add olive oil or ghee. Add vegetables and 1/4 tsp of salt and cook stirring frequently until veggies are soft - about 5-8 minutes. Add garlic and cook for 30 seconds.
Next, add beef to pan and break up with wooden spoon. Cook for about 10 minutes stirring regularly, until meat is fully cooked. Add all the spices, 1/2 tsp salt, pepper and cocoa powder and cook for 1 minute.
Add tomato sauce, diced tomatoes and maple syrup (optional) and simmer for 20 minutes.
Once chili is finished, add cilantro.
To assemble, cut sweet potatoes in half and place a generous amount of chili on top. You can garnish with additional cilantro and avocado.