There is finally a chill in the air here in New England, and a chill means chili season, right?! Chili is one of my all time favorite foods, and lucky for me, my husband and daughter love it just about as much as I do. We make a pot up just about every week in the winter time, and I love the versatility. Sometimes we make a more traditional version, but often we mix it up with one of my nontraditional variations like my smoky turkey chickpea chili, or this bean-free beef and butternut squash recipe, perfect for the cold winter months. It uses simple seasonal ingredients with a couple secret ingredients (you’ll see). Just try it out– you can thank me later!Print
1 lb grass-fed ground beef
1 tbsp avocado oil
1 onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 bell pepper, diced
3 cups peeled and diced butternut squash
1 can organic diced tomatoes
1 tbsp chili powder
2 tsp cocoa powder
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp coriander
1/2 tsp sea salt (more as needed)
1 cup beef broth or water
green onions and cilantro, to top
- Brown beef in a large saute pan until no longer pink.
- In a large soup pot, heat avocado oil to medium high heat. Add onion and bell pepper and cook until translucent. Stir in garlic.
- Add browned beef to pot along with butternut squash, diced tomatoes, cocoa powder and all spices. Stir to combine.
- Bring to a simmer, and cook, covered, on medium low heat for 1-2 hours (if not more). Test butternut squash to ensure doneness. Add beef stock or water as needed to reach desired consistency. Taste for seasoning and serve.
- Add all ingredients to slow cooker and cook for 7-9 hours on low.
- Taste for seasoning and serve.
- No butternut squash? Sweet potatoes or kabocha squash work great, as well.
- Switch out the meat for whatever you’d like– you can also add beans, if you want to stretch it!