5 Bean Chocolate-Chipotle Chili (with butternut squash)

15 Nov

Yes, there is a lot going on there, but I promise this chili delivers.  It is flavorful, delicious and easy – made mostly out of pantry goods!

This is a recipe I have tweaked and perfected over the last few years and you are getting the newest edition – butternut squash. I’m a firm believer that the more colors a meal has in it, the better it is for you.

As you might be able to tell, I’ve been really enjoying butternut squash lately. My newest addition created a problem turned happy accident. In order to cook the squash fully, I had to add more liquid than I usually use.  Unfortunately this made the chili too soupy so I decided to add bulgur. Bulgur is a whole grain made from cooked wheat berries so it only takes about 20 minutes to finish.  Its wonderful nutty flavor and light “meaty” texture was an amazing addition.

With all of my discussion of the new additions, I haven’t even touched on the chocolate chipotle combo… I guess you’ll have to just try for yourself.


olive oil

1 large onion, diced

1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced – greens and white parts separated

3 cloves garlic

1 jalapeño diced *be careful to wash your hands afterwards*, optional

1 bar of dark chocolate

chipotle chiles in adobo sauce, pureed – I used a whole can, but the average palate would probably do with 2 or three

2-3 tablespoons cumin

1 teaspoon red chili powder (optional)

3 cans diced tomatoes with chiles

2 cans kidney beans, drained

1 can chickpeas, drained

1 can black beans, drained

1 can white kidney beans, drained

1 can pinto beans, drained

1 large butternut squash, peeled, de-seeded and chopped into small pieces

2 cups corn kernels, frozen or fresh

1 beer

1 cup bulgur



Heat olive oil over medium heat in large soup pan.  Add onions and cook for a few minutes.  Add white parts of scallions and cook until onions are transparent. Add jalapeños and cook for a few minutes. Add scallion greens and garlic and cook until fragrant.  Add chocolate and stir until it melts. Add 2 tablespoons of cumin and red chili powder and 1 can of tomatoes.  Stir until it creates a thick paste.  Add pureed chipotle peppers and cook for a few minutes.  Add the rest of the tomatoes, beans, butternut squash, two cans of water, and beer.

Bring to a boil, turn to medium, and cook for 15 minutes.  Add bulgur, stir and cook for another 20 minutes, until squash is cooked through. Taste and salt and add cumin as needed. Serve hot!


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