Ben and I are in a heated thermostat war which can only mean one thing…chili season is here! Seriously though with the thermostat – can’t we all just get along at a warm and snuggly 71 degrees for the next 5-6 months? Is that too much to ask? Have you seen the Women’s Winter video? Bueller?
I don’t know what it’s like in your neck of the woods but here in the Midwest we seem to be stuck in a never-ending cycle of 40 degree mornings followed by 60-70 degree afternoons hence the thermo struggle. I slyly turn the heat on around 6pm, anticipating the chilly night ahead, then Ben “The Furnace” goes into a sweat-induced rage a few hours later clicking it off after everyone is asleep, and we all wake up shivering. This is the time of year when I just want the weather to commit already. Be hot, or be cold, but don’t be both. You aren’t a Baked Alaska.
Anyway, the madness will eventually end and when those cool mornings turn into cool evenings, I’ve got a yummy chili recipe for you to have bubbling on the stove, shredded cheese and tortilla chips at the ready. Sweet Potato, Poblano and Chorizo Chili has just the right amount of spice to warm you from the inside out, and is such a cinch to whip up!
I feel like this recipe would have been the perfect dinner to make on Halloween night but, well, here we are on November 7th. Sorry! The tender sweet potato, earthy poblano pepper, and spiced chorizo highlighted in this chili recipe topped with all the fixin’s is hearty, healthy, and filling, plus the leftovers are perfect to reheat for lunches all week long which I can totally appreciate right now with two little ones at home. Anything I can stash in the fridge then reheat in one minute for a quick and easy meal is automatically a winner, and this recipe gets bonus points for getting better and better the longer it sits.
The inspiration actually came from another chili recipe of mine that’s going gangbusters on Pinterest right now – Crock Pot Sweet Potato and Quinoa Turkey Chili. That, coupled with the fact that we’re going sweet potato crazy at my house right now – Lincoln loves spiralized sweet potato fries (ok me too) and I’ve been making the heck out of this dish – inspired me to think of another sweet potato chili flavor combo that could work, and this is definitely The One.
The subtle sweetness from diced sweet potatoes pairs perfectly with store bought or homemade chorizo (<< try it!!) spiced with paprika, cinnamon, and chili powder, while poblano pepper adds another “meaty” element to the dish. Black beans add heft and health to each spoonful.
If you’re looking to fill some bellies with warm and hearty comfort food over the next couple of months, this Sweet Potato, Poblano and Chorizo Chili is it. There’s definitely something to be said about classic chili on a cold evening, but this twist is a must-try too!
Start by adding 1 cubed sweet potato (about 2 cups,) 1 chopped poblano pepper (look for them by the jalapeños at the grocery store – note: poblanos are not spicy!) and 1 shallot or small onion to 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil in a large Dutch oven or soup pot over medium-high heat. Season with salt and pepper then saute until the sweet potatoes begin to slightly soften, 5 minutes.
Next add 12oz chorizo then saute until cooked through, breaking it up as it cooks. I’ve been making my own chorizo lately and it’s super easy – just ground pork and spices – I included the recipe for it in the “notes” section of the recipe card below. I make my own for two reasons: 1.) I can control the amount of fat in the chorizo (not that I’m fat averse by any means but store-bought chorizo can get pretty greasy,) 2.) No funky fillers. ‘Nuf said!
Add 2 cloves minced garlic then saute for 30 more seconds or until very fragrant.
Last step is to dump in the remaining ingredients including a 15oz can black beans that have been drained and rinsed, 28oz can crushed tomatoes, 1-1/2 cups chicken broth, and a bunch of chili-esque spices including chili powder, cumin, and cinnamon (you’ll love how it tastes with the chorizo!) I also call for adding 1-1/2 Tablespoons brown sugar. This will not make your chili taste sweet, it will just take the hard edge of the crushed tomatoes off. Trust me! ?
Place a lid partially on top then simmer until the sweet potatoes are tender, 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally, and then ladle into bowls and top with your favorite chili toppings. Personally I feel a vat of chili isn’t a vat of chili without loads of freshly shredded cheese and an offensively large crush of tortilla chips on top, but you do you and serve this yummy Sweet Potato, Poblano and Chorizo Chili however you see fit. Enjoy, enjoy!
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Sweet Potato, Poblano and Chorizo Chili
Sweet Potato, Poblano and Chorizo Chili is a southwest twist on classic chili with just the right amount of spice. Quick and easy to whip up, too!
- 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2” cubes (about 2 cups)
- 1 poblano pepper, seeded and chopped
- 1 large shallot or small onion, chopped
- salt and pepper
- 12oz chorizo, homemade or store bought (see notes)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 28oz can crushed tomatoes
- 15oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1-1/2 cups gluten-free chicken broth
- 2 bay leaves (omit if using store bought chorizo)
- 2 Tablespoons chili powder
- 1-1/2 Tablespoons brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- Toppings: tortilla chips, shredded Monterey Jack cheese, guacamole, sour cream, etc
- Heat extra virgin olive oil in a large soup pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add sweet potatoes, poblano peppers, and shallots, season with salt and pepper, then saute until sweet potatoes begin to soften, 5 minutes. Add chorizo then saute until cooked through, breaking it up as it cooks. Add garlic then saute for 30 seconds.
- Add remaining ingredients then stir to combine and turn heat up to bring to a boil. Turn heat down to medium-low then place a lid partially on top and simmer until sweet potatoes are tender, 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Taste then adjust seasoning if necessary, and then serve with toppings.
If you’re using store-bought chorizo you may need to scoop out some fat that will render out as it cooks. Aim to leave no more than 1 Tablespoon fat in the pot to avoid a greasy-tasting chili. Here is the recipe I use for homemade chorizo from Honest Cooking (you will only use 3/4 of this recipe for the chili - can be made a day ahead of time.):
- 1lb ground pork
- 2 Tablespoons paprika
- heaping Tablespoon ground cumin
- 2-1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon red chili pepper flakes (optional)
- 1/8 - 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 3 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
This recipe is courtesy of Iowa Girl Eats, http://iowagirleats.com.