Food for Fuel: Sweet Potato and Black Bean Chili

November 12, 2008 at 9:41 am | Posted in Food, Nutrition, Vegetarian Entrees | 8 Comments

I still haven’t gone grocery shopping, but I have plenty of sweet potatoes, which Melissa chose as this week’s Blogger Secret Ingredient. I based this chili on a recipe that I found quite a while ago and cannot find the source, but I changed it quite a bit, so I’ll just take credit.

I diced slightly less than half a red onion and about a third of a large sweet potato (I left on the skin). I heated a saucepan over medium-high, sprayed it with cooking spray, and cooked the onion and sweet potato for about four minutes, stirring often.

Next, I added:

  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1/2 Tb chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin
  • Sprinkle of salt
  • About 1/3 red bell pepper, chopped
  • Lots of frozen broccoli, thawed

Stirred for about 30 seconds.

Added 2/3 cup of water and brought to a simmer. Then reduced heat, covered, and let simmer for 12 minutes.

Then I added:

  • 1/2 can black beans
  • 1/2 can diced tomatoes
  • 1 tsp. lime juice

I brought the chili back to a simmer, then reduced again and let cook another 4 minutes.

I really wanted ground turkey in my chili, but alas, I had none. I dried my tears and covered the chili in cilantro and cheese.


It made quite a large amount of chili. I meant it to be a single serving, but if you make this you will probably have leftovers or be very full.

Nutrition of this Meal

This meal contains 11 ingredients from the World’s Healthiest Foods list:

  • Bell peppers
  • Broccoli
  • Garlic
  • Onions
  • Sweet potato
  • Tomatoes
  • Lime
  • Low-fat cheese
  • Black beans
  • Cilantro
  • Chili pepper


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  1. Hi, I have a question regarding electrolyte/fluid intake during a marathon. I have read a lot of different opinions on how to hydrate/refuel properly during a marathon, from salt sticks to gel packs, to drinking Gatorade for replacing electrolytes. Based on your previous experience or anybody else, what did you find works best for you? I think I am going to experiment with gels on a long run and washing it down with water, should I also be drinking something like Gatorade as well? Do you think bringing a couple gel packs and water will be fine for a marathon? I’m worried if I don’t take enough sodium, my muscles are going to start cramping up during the last few miles of the marathon, but I don’t want to overdo it on the sodium. Also, if you do replenish with something, any specific brands you would recommend? Thanks for any advice you can give me!

  2. Looks delicious. I don’t know why chili always seems so complicated to me… looks like you’ve got it down. May have to try this!

  3. Mmm! I also love sweet potatoes and the skin! At thanksgiving I will eat all the skins that my mom peels off when she makes her mashed sweet potatos… hahaha. You are hilarious:) “so i’ll just take credit” and “dried my tears”… i appreciate these. 🙂

  4. Andrea, I am training for my first marathon, so fueling is relatively new for me, but I will address this in my next post.
    Toni J., It’s really easy, especially the vegetarian kind because you don’t have to brown the meat first.

  5. This looks like a great fridge-is-bare recipe. I always seem to have lots of sweet potatoes around. I only wish my bananas would last as long.

  6. Mmm…looks great! I love how you include the World’s Healthiest Food list in your recipes. I need to start making more soups now that winter looms on the horizon 😉

  7. Oooh boy that looks good.

  8. Oh, that looks so good! I love how you identify the good things in your recipes!

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