A No Fuss Dinner Solution: Naughty and Nice Sweet Potato Chili

Hey everyone!  We’re due for another delicious fall recipe, dontcha think?  I wanted to squeeze this in before my crazy weekend (I’ve got a wedding and a baby shower to attend as well as a dinner party to host…ahh!) begins.  I actually got the idea for this dish from a Weight Watcher cook book that my sister brought to work.  I liked that it combines both sweet and spicy flavors, it’s jam-packed with nutritious veggies, and it includes comforting sweet potatoes.  It sounded perfect for this time of year, so I decided to tweak it just a bit to make it my own.

Did I mention this recipe is EASY?  It’s so convenient if you don’t have a lot of time to cook because you basically just throw a bunch of stuff in the crock pot and forget about it, and a few hours later a scrumptious sweet and spicy aroma is filling your house and it’s time to eat!  If you prefer a vegetarian chili, just swap the meat out for kidney beans to keep it power-packed with protein.

Here are the ingredients you’ll need:

2 sweet potatoes, peeled and diced

1/2 pound green beans, cut into 1-inch pieces

1 pound ground turkey, or to give it even more flavor, use sweet or spicy turkey sausage links (or 1 can of red kidney beans, rinsed and drained for vegetarian dish)

2 leeks, trimmed to white and light green parts, chopped

1 large (or two small) zucchini, diced

1 can of chickpeas, rinsed and drained

1 large can (12 ounces) of diced tomatoes

1 can (8 ounces) of tomato sauce

2 1/2 TBS chili powder

2 TBS brown sugar

1 1/2 TSP curry powder

1 TSP cumin

1/2 TSP black pepper

1/4 TSP cinnamon

1 TSP red wine vinegar

Preparation Instructions:

Brown the meat and set aside.  Place the leeks, green beans, zucchini, chickpeas, tomatoes, tomato sauce and all the spices in the crock pot and mix well.  Place the sweet potatoes on top, leaving a 1/2-inch border around the edge of the crock pot.  Cover and cook 4-5 hours on high or 8-10 hours on low.  About 30 minutes before serving, stir in meat and vinegar.  Enjoy!

I threw everything in the crock pot at 8 p.m. last night. Feel free to play with the veggie combo to include your favorites!

All the sweet and spicy flavors come together for a party in your mouth! To add even more kick, get the canned tomatoes with jalapenos.

When I got up this morning, all the simmering flavors made my house smell amazing!  I added the meat and vinegar and packed a serving in a tupperware for lunch before running out the door. You can also freeze the leftovers in individual tupperware containers for easy grab-and-go lunches!  A little cilantro would make a perfect garnish.  I think this makes a great stand-alone dinner.  Since it includes the filling sweet potatoes, there’s really no need to add a starchy side.

With recipes like this, a busy evening doesn’t mean your family has to settle for the drive-thru.  With just a little planning and easy prep, you can have a highly nutritious dinner waiting for you when you walk in the door.  I think my crock pot may just be one of my favorite wedding gifts, and I plan to use it A LOT this fall and winter!

Do you have a great crock pot recipe to share?  What are your tricks for feeding a family on the go without sacrificing nutrition?  I’d love to hear your ideas or feature your recipe!

5 Comments

Filed under Gluten-Free, Recipes

5 responses to “A No Fuss Dinner Solution: Naughty and Nice Sweet Potato Chili

  1. Ronda

    JoAnna,
    Just made this recipe last night! It is delicious and will feed my husband and me for a few more days. I used grass-fed ground beef that I browned with some minced garlic (didn’t have ground turkey), and I also added some minced garlic into the crockpot. I have tried almost all your recipes, and they are great! Keep ’em coming!
    🙂

  2. That’s great Ronda! All the spices definitely gave the dish a unique taste. It’s not something I would want to eat all the time, but it’s great for fall and I too enjoyed it for a few days! It made a really filling lunch. I’m so glad to hear you are trying the recipes. That makes my day! I’ve been wanting to do a fish taco recipe post for the last few weeks, so I’ll get around to that soon. Did you try the pumpkin raisin bars?

    • Ronda

      Yes, I did try the pumpkin bars and…I failed. I was rushing around (I was making them for a fall dessert get together with some girl friends, and was trying to clean and cook at the same time), and I just didn’t read carefully. I saw Stevia and thought “oh use Truvia” instead of realizing that Truvia is NOT the same thing as Stevia extract. Haha! So they weren’t very sweet. But my husband put some light whipped cream on it and thought it tasted great. I didn’t end up serving it for the get together, but I am looking forward to trying it the RIGHT way again soon 🙂

  3. Ya know what, my sister did the same thing! She used Stevia in the Raw instead of extract and they didn’t come out sweet enough. I just updated the post so the readers would be sure to get the stevia in the extract form. I’m sorry that didn’t work out! Next time I make it, I might use chocolate chips instead of raisins to make it even tastier!

    • Ronda

      Haha, funny someone’s brain went to the same place as mine! I did use the chocolate chips actually (I don’t like raisins; it’s a texture thing) and I think if I had used the right sweetener, they would have been so delicious. I’m looking forward to trying it again! 🙂

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