Bean Chili

This is recipe inspired by a chili my dear friend Mimi made for us this summer. Mimi and her family are not vegans but boy does she know how to cook amazing vegan food. The secret ingredience is ajvar relish which is a Turkish pepper-based condiment made principally from roasted red peppers and eggplants. It may or may not also include garlic. You can use the relish in stews and soups, on toast or as a sauce for BBQ. I love ajvar relish in my quesadillas.I make my own but you can also buy on Amazon,Walmart, trader joes and world market place. 

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, chopped
  • 2 ribs celery, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon salt, divided
  • 4 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
  • 1 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 ½ teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 large 28 ounces can or 2 small 15 ounces each cans diced tomatoes
  • 2  15 ounces cans each kidney or black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1  15 ounces can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2/3 cup ajvar relish
  • 2 cups vegetable broth 
  • 2 cup spinach, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, plus more for garnishing

Garnish suggestions: chopped cilantro, sliced avocado, tortilla chips, toasted pepitas

  1. In a heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat, warm the olive oil until sizzling. Add chopped onion, carrot, celery and stir to combine and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender and the onion is translucent. 
  2. Add the garlic, chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika cinnamon and ginger. Cook while stirring constantly for about 1 minute.
  3. Add the diced tomatoes, ajvar relish, beans, salt and vegetable broth Stir to combine and reduce to a simmer. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally and reducing heat as necessary to maintain a gentle simmer, for 30 minutes. 
  4. Remove the chili from the heat and add cilantro and spinach.

About Green Mom

Fredrica Syren, the author and founder of, was born in Sweden. Her mother was a classically trained chef who introduced her to many eclectic flavors and skills at a young age. Her mom’s passion for the outdoors and gardening planted the seed for her own love of nature and healthy eating. She received a degree in journalism and has worked as a print, Internet and broadcasting journalist for many years with big businesses within Europe and the United States. After her mom was diagnosed with terminal cancer and she with pre-cancer, Fredrica changed her career to become a full time yoga teacher and activist. A longtime world traveler, foodie and career woman, she was exposed to many facets of life, but nothing inspired her more than becoming a mom. After her first-born, Fredrica began a food blog focusing on local, seasonal, organic & vegetarian dishes. Years of food blogging developed into the cookbook Yummy in My Tummy, Healthy Cooking for the Whole Family. Upon the arrival of her second child, Fredrica founded Her vision was to establish a site providing insight about gardening, home and personal care, baby & child, and of course food & nutrition. hosts many talented writers shedding light on ways to incorporate eco-friendly and nutritious practices for busy families. She is an advocate for organic, local and sustainable businesses. Fredrica hopes to inspire social change through her lifestyle, passion and business. Fredrica lives with her husband James Harker-Syren and their three children in San Diego, CA.

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