Vegetarian Chili with Walnuts and Chocolate

IMG_0926I have a love-hate relationship with Fall; I love the cooler weather and the hearty foods but I hate the load of homework that comes with it. Lately, I’ve been doing non-stop homework and trying to figure out what does and doesn’t work. This explains the absence of the last Farmers Market Friday and the last Sunday’s Post. But here is the revival of our dearly beloved blogpost.

IMG_0929I first made this chili earlier this year but missed a few ingredients. With a lack of ingredients came a lack of flavor. But this past weekend was a typical windy, cold Fall weekend filled with friends, neighbors and pumpkin carving. When in need for a chili, I thought about giving this one another try. IMG_0935I was taken aback by the ingredients used when I first saw this recipe. Walnuts? Chocolate? Really? But you’ll see, it all works VERY well in the end. The walnuts give it the meatiness that it lacks from being vegetarian and the chocolate brings an earthiness flavor to it. As you may have noticed from the image below, I wrapped the top of my pot with a cloth towel.  When you let your chili simmer, all the steam builds up and pearls of water form under the lid. When you open it, all the water falls back into the chili and make it too watery. By wrapping it with a cloth towel, it gets trapped and it doesn’t water down your creation.IMG_0936

Make room in your recipe collection because this one is keeper! As the season change and the nights get longer, your body needs more fuel and hardy meals are a great way to get your energy. This chili will ignites the light spark in you.


Vegetarian Chili with Walnuts and Chocolate

  • Servings: 8
  • Difficulty: Medium
  • Print


  • 2 tablespoons ghee or coconut oil (coconut oil for a vegan option)
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 red bell pepper, roughly chopped
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, roughly chopped
  • 1 carrot, finely sliced
  • 2-3 celery sticks, finely sliced
  • 1 1/2 cups walnuts, roughly chopped
  • 3 14 oz canned beans, mixed red and black beans
  • 2 14 oz cans of plum tomatoes
  • 1 cup water
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 oz dark chocolate (or 1 tablespoon chocolate powder)


  • plain yogurt
  • cilantro
  • limes
  • corn tortillas


In a large pot, such as a dutch oven, heat the ghee. Sauté the onion, garlic, cumin, paprika and oregano for 3-4 minutes over medium high heat, stirring frequently until the onions are translucent.

Add the peppers, carrot, and celery and stir together for 5-6 minutes, until tender. Add the walnuts, beans, water and salt/pepper and bring to a boil before reducing it to a simmer. Let the chili simmer for at least 30 minutes. (The longer it simmers, the more flavor it has)

Before serving, stir in the chocolate and let sit for 5 minutes. Serve warm in bowls and top with yogurt, cilantro, limes, tortillas, etc.

Bon Appétit,


Recipe adapted from Green Kitchen Travels

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