Healthy Chili

This healthy chili is made with extra lean hamburger and is packed with good-for-you veggies. Enjoy it on its own, or serve it with baked tortilla chips or warm whole wheat tortillas.

Makes 6-8 servings

2 tablespoons canola oil
1 large yellow onion, finely diced
1 pound extra lean hamburger (I use 84% or 92% lean)
1 red bell pepper, diced
2 small zucchini, diced
1 (15 oz) can corn kernels, drained
1 (15 oz) can black beans, drained
1 (15 oz) can pinto beans, drained
1 (28 oz) plus 1 (14 oz) can diced tomatoes with juices
1/2 cup water*
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
2 heaping teaspoons fajita spice
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne**
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon


In a large pot over medium-high heat, warm canola oil. Add onions and saute until translucent and lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Add ground hamburger and saute until lightly browned, about 8-10 minutes. Add red bell pepper and zucchini and cook for 5 minutes. Add corn, beans, tomatoes, water, and brown sugar; stir well. Add fajita spice, cumin, cayenne, and cinnamon; stir well. Reduce heat to low; partially cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes, or until thick and soupy. Cook longer if you like your vegetables softer. If desired, sprinkle with a little cheddar cheese and fresh cilantro before serving.

*Note: I use 1/2 cup water for a thicker chili, but use as much or as little as you wish to achieve desired level of soupiness.
**If your child doesn't like too much heat, then simply reduce or eliminate the cayenne pepper.