Black Bean, Sweet Corn, Hot and Bell Pepper Chili


Photo by Michael Piazza / Styled by Catrine Kelty

This vegetarian recipe has all the classic chili flavors you expect with an added kick of heat from the mix of fresh hot peppers, balanced out by their sweet bell pepper counterparts. It also highlights the late-season sweet corn, and by adding it in at the end it stays almost raw, maintaining a snappy crunch for a great textural element. Definitely don’t skimp on the toppings either. 


2  tablespoons olive oil
4 bell peppers (red, orange or yellow), seeded and diced
2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and diced
2 poblano peppers, seeded and diced
2 medium yellow onions, diced
1 tablespoon kosher salt
½ tablespoon black pepper
1 tablespoon chipotle chili powder, or to taste
1 teaspoon cumin
½ teaspoon oregano
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 (15-ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
2 (28-ounce) cans crushed tomatoes
1 cup water
3 ears fresh sweet corn, kernels
removed from cob
Sour cream, diced scallions,  shredded cheddar cheese and tortilla chips for serving

Heat the olive oil in a large stockpot over medium high heat, then add all the diced peppers, the onion, the salt, pepper and all the spices. Cook for 5–7 minutes, stirring consistently, until the vegetables begin to soften. Turn the heat down to medium and add the garlic, cooking for an additional  2 minutes.

Add the drained and rinsed black beans, the tomatoes and water; stir until everything is well mixed. Allow the chili to come to a simmer and then set the heat to low; cover the pot and let cook for 30–40 minutes, stirring occasionally. After 30 minutes check that the tomatoes are breaking down and the vegetables are soft. Check for seasoning, adding more spices or salt and pepper to taste. If the chili seems too thick, add more water in ¼-cup increments). Cook 10 more minutes uncovered. J

Just before serving, add the corn and stir until the kernels are well incorporated. Let cook 2 minutes, then serve with sour cream, scallions, shredded cheddar and tortilla chips.

This story appeared in the Fall 2017 issue.