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Hearty beef and black bean chili

January 16, 2018 | Heather Shannon
bowl of black bean veggie chili

What’s more satisfying than a helping of warm, hearty chili when the weather turns dreary?

Better yet, this chili is loaded with good-for-you legumes and vegetables.

“Black beans are an excellent source of protein and fiber,” says dietitian Katie Rankell, director of the UCI Health Weight Management Program.

Not only do black beans provide a feeling of fullness without being high in fat or calories, she says. They’re also great for bone health, thanks to the calcium, phosphorous, magnesium, iron and zinc they contain.

Yellow onions are also a low-key powerhouse. Not only do they have a ton of fiber, which helps to decrease the risk of diabetes, high cholesterol and colorectal cancer, they have more antioxidants than any other type of onion.

“Antioxidants can help prevent DNA damage,” Rankell says.

Beef and Black Bean Chili

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Serves: 4

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil, separated
  • ½ pound lean ground beef (10 percent or less fat)
  • 2 yellow onions, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 10 ounces white mushrooms, quartered
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 14.5-ounce cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 15.5-ounce can low-sodium black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 3 cups low sodium, fat-free vegetable broth
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1.5 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper


Heat a saucepan over medium high heat. Add 1 teaspoon of olive oil and beef. Cook, breaking it up with a wooden spoon until browned, about 3-5 minutes. Drain any fat and set beef aside.

Add olive oil, onions, celery, carrot, bell pepper, mushrooms and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables soften (about 8 minutes).

Add beef back to pot, plus the tomatoes, beans, broth, tomato paste, chili powder, cumin, oregano, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil.

Reduce heat and simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the chili is thickened (about 45 minutes).

Optional: Add toppings of your choice, such as scallions, reduced fat cream cheese, reduced fat shredded cheese or baked tortilla chips.

Nutritional Information

  • 325 calories
  • 14.7 g fiber
  • 8 g fat
  • 26.3 g protein
  • 40 g carbohydrates

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