Rainbow Chili

Chili is my absolute favourite thing in the world to cook.

Okay, so it’s definitely a pretty simple meal to make, but that’s exactly why I love it so much. I moved into my first apartment the summer before my second year of grad school and didn’t know how to do much except reheat meals that my parents made me (they’re the best). But chili was always something I could make: garlic, onion, ground beef, a can of tomatoes, a can of beans, spices. That was a super basic chili and that’s what’s so great about this meal: it’s so versatile. You can dress it up or dress it down. You can vary your proteins: turkey, beef, just beans. You can remove the beans entirely. It’s all good. It’s still chili as long as you’ve got the classic spices involved.

Imagine my sadness when I started working with a nutritionist and learned that since I was dealing with major congestion issues and way too many colds, I should probably stop eating tomatoes. Not forever. But for a while.


I was actually in Charleston when I got the email. And had just eaten a bunless burger with fries and tons of ketchup for dinner. Oops.

But she was definitely right because if I eat too many tomatoes or too many meals involving them in a given week, I definitely notice my congestion issues creeping back up. Same goes for strawberries and a bunch of other things on the list. That’s because certain foods cause a histamine reaction in the body. For a while, I avoided tomatoes like the plague and made smoothies without bananas. I was super sad not to be able to eat my beloved chili, though. It was the worst.


But everything gets better eventually and last summer, I had definitely noticed a major improvement in my health. I finally had more energy, was sleeping super soundly, enjoying my workouts and didn’t feel like being so strict with my diet (there are already so many things I can’t eat). So I said hello to tomatoes once again and chili was back in my kitchen. Hallelujah.

Which brings me to this recipe. It’s still super simple but with the addition of three types of peppers. Hence the name Rainbow Chili.


Rainbow Chili
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Looking for an easy weeknight dinner? My Rainbow Chili is packed with protein, fiber, healthy carbs and nutrients from three types of peppers.
Recipe type: Lunch, Dinner
Serves: makes several bowls
  • ½ red pepper
  • ½ orange pepper
  • ½ yellow pepper
  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1-2 tbsps chili powder (depending on how hot you want it)
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tbsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 can tomatoes
  • 2 cans black beans (I like the Eden's Organics Brand)
  • extra peppers
  • Avocado slices
  • Hot sauce
  1. Chop the peppers until small and bite-sized.
  2. Heat up some olive oil in a pot and cook your ground beef until completely cooked through.
  3. Sauté your onion and garlic.
  4. Add your spices and stir until everything is coated.
  5. Turn the heat up to high and add your tomatoes and beans. Stir until everything is combined and boil for a few minutes.
  6. Turn the heat down and simmer for 15 minutes covered, then 30-45 minutes uncovered.
  7. Serve with your desired toppings. I love avocado, extra peppers and lots of hot sauce.

Aya Tsintziras is a food blogger at www.ahealthystory.com. She posts gluten-free, dairy-free and mostly sugar-free recipes, lifestyle and pop culture stories on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays.

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