Friday, October 17, 2014

Easy Vegetarian Chili

I made a new discovery (I love it when that happens)!  I finally found a bean that fits into my very low carb lifestyle: Black Soy Beans!  For the past year, I've been avoiding beans because most beans are too high in carbs, usually around 23 g carbs per 1/2 cup serving.  Even if you subtract the fiber, they weigh in at about 17 net carbs...still too high.  Recently, while browsing a low carb cookbook from the library, I saw the ingredient "black soy beans" multiple times, so I just had to investigate.  To my surprise, I learned that black soy beans are an extremely low 7 g total carbs per 1/2 cup serving, with 6 g fiber.  That's an amazing 1 net carb per serving!  I tried them, tested my blood sugar to see how my BG reacted and I knew immediately that this is a bean I can work with. My blood sugar didn't rise at all.  So, into my kitchen I went and started cooking. This extremely easy vegetarian chili is a complete meal-in-a-bowl and was a huge hit at a recent church supper.  The black soy beans provide all the essential amino acids (so they are a complete protein source) and they taste exactly like regular black beans without the carbs.  This recipe is dedicated to my little sister -- enjoy!

Easy Vegetarian Chili
Makes about 10 servings

2 tablespoons coconut oil
1 medium zucchini, cubed
3 small carrots, cut into small chunks
1 small onion, chopped
1 cup frozen chopped spinach or kale
1 jalapeno pepper, chopped
1 green or yellow pepper, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons chili powder, or to taste
1 teaspoon ground cumin, or to taste
2 teaspoons dried oregano
28 oz. Marinara Sauce, no sugar added
28 oz. crushed tomatoes, no sugar added (no sodium, if desired)
2 cans (15 oz each) organic black soy beans, drained and rinsed (I buy Eden's brand)
1 cup plain tomato sauce, no sugar added  (no sodium, if desired)
1 cup water (or more to achieve desired consistency)
Salt and pepper to taste
Dash or two of hot sauce, optional
Shredded cheese for topping, optional (omit for dairy free)

1. Heat coconut oil in a dutch oven or heavy pot, add chopped vegetables and saute until beginning to soften.  Add herbs and spices and saute for another minute.  Add beans, marinara sauce, crushed tomatoes, plain tomato sauce, and water.  Allow to simmer, covered for about 40-45 minutes or until carrots are cooked through.  Season with salt, pepper and hot sauce (optional) before serving.  Top with shredded cheese, if desired (omit for dairy free).

NOTE:  This makes an excellent crock pot recipe!  Just saute the vegetables in a skillet, add them to the crock pot with the remaining ingredients and cook on low for 4-6 hours (or high for 2-3 hours), until carrots are cooked through.

Nutritional Information per serving (optional ingredients not included): 212 calories, 22 g total carbohydrate (9 g dietary fiber, 9.6 g sugar), 9.3 g total fat (3.1 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 0 mg cholesterol, 793 mg sodium, 109.3 mg calcium, 603 mg potassium, 11.3 g protein.  Net carbs per serving: 13 grams

Recipe by Kathy Sheehan, copyright 2014

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