Healthy Kickin' Chipotle Chicken Chili with Crispy Spiced Tortillas

Enjoy rich and spicy chili without the guilt. This chili is packed with lean protein, belly-filling fiber, and antioxidant rich tomatoes and red bell peppers. It's even better with warm and crispy spiced tortillas.


Chili:
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 large yellow onion, finely diced
1 1/2 pound boneless, skinless chicken cutlets, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 large red bell pepper, diced
1 (15 oz) can corn kernels, drained
2 (15 oz) can black beans OR 1 (15 0z) can black beans and 1 (15 oz) can red beans, drained
2 (28 oz) cans diced tomatoes with juices*
juice of half a lime (about 2 teaspoons)
1/4 cup light brown sugar
4 chipotle chilis in adobo sauce, finely chopped (use fewer chilis for less heat and extra chilis for more heat)**
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
1 avocado, diced and sprinkled with lime juice
shredded cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese, optional
low-fat sour cream, optional

Seasoned Tortillas
4 (6-inch) whole wheat tortillas (low-carb or half corn/half wheat are good substitutes)
non-stick cooking spray
Mexican seasoning of your choice, such as fajita spices, chipotle chili powder, Mexican oregano, cumin and/or cayenne pepper


In a large pot over medium-high heat, warm canola oil. Add onions and saute until translucent and lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Add chicken and saute until lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Add red bell pepper; cook for 5 minutes. Add corn, beans, tomatoes, lime juice, brown sugar, and chipotle chilis in adobo sauce; stir well. Reduce heat to low; partially cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes, or until desired level of thickness is reached. Cook longer if you like your vegetables softer. Stir in the fresh cilantro, and adjust seasonings to your taste.

Top individual servings with diced avocado, chopped fresh cilantro, shredded cheese, and a dollop of sour cream, if desired. Leftover chili will last up to 1 week if refrigerated in an air-tight container.

For the spiced tortillas, place a large non-skillet over medium-high heat. Spray both sides of a tortilla with cooking spray and sprinkle with spices. Place in the hot pan for about 1 minute per side, or until crisp. Repeat with remaining 3 tortillas. Cut each tortilla into quarters, and serve alongside bowls of chili.

*Note: This is a rather soupy chili. If you prefer a thicker chili, then use fewer tomatoes; if you prefer it really soupy, then add an extra 1/2 cup water.
**Chipotle chilis in adobe sauce are available at Mexican specialty markets as well as in the Mexican section of most major supermarkets. If you can't find them, then substitute 2 tablespoons of chipotle chili powder and 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper. Taste and adjust accordingly.