While I love baked sweet potatoes with a salad, they also make a great vessel for curries, stir-fried veggies, and, as in this recipe, chili. And if you make the chili and bake the sweet potatoes in advance, all you have to do is heat and serve for an instant, healthy weeknight meal. The sweetness of Japanese sweet potatoes complements the spicy flavors of this chili, and every bite is so flavorful. Plus, I’ve added a little secret ingredient … cacao! Yep, cacao adds a depth to the chili that makes it even more special.
What you need:
- 2 sweet potatoes
- 1 cup water, divided
- 1 small yellow onion, chopped
- 1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes
- 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, drained
- 1 (15-ounce) can corn, drained
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ teaspoon cacao powder
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 cup spinach
- Diced Avocado and chopped green onion for topping
What you do:
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Wash and dry sweet potatoes. Using a knife, scrape off any dark spots (spots result in bitterness), keeping most of the skin in place. Place sweet potatoes on baking sheet and bake 1 hour, or until soft throughout. When done, remove from oven and let cool 10 minutes before serving.
- Meanwhile, in a pot over medium heat, warm ½ cup water. Add onions and cook 5 minutes until translucent and fragrant. Add remaining water, tomatoes, black beans, corn, chili powder, paprika, cacao powder, salt, and pepper. Cook 20 minutes, or until thickened.
- Add spinach and cook 2 to 3 minutes until wilted.
- To serve, slice potatoes lengthwise and gently squeeze open. Using a fork, gently mash flesh, creating a well for the chili. Spoon a generous serving of chili on top, and garnish with avocado and green onion.
>> While I pretty much exclusively eat Japanese sweet potatoes, Russet potatoes and yams also work great.
- >> I always bake my sweet potatoes with the skin, as it’s loaded with nutrients.
- >> Ideas for toppings are endless! Think vegan cheese, tahini sauce, vegan sour cream, salsa, roasted pumpkin seeds, etc.