Chili Casserole with Sweet Potato Puffs
Sweet Potatoes + Tater Puffs (aka Tots) + Chili = a no brainer vegan creation you must try!! You get a fun balance of sweet & savory. I also love this recipe because we’re making a rustic chili so you have more dimension to the flavors and textures which can easily be eaten on it’s own.
What is a Rustic Chili?
When chefs add the term rustic to the beginning of a dish’s name, it only means that the dish has been created with a more homey comfort feel. The cuts of the vegetables might not be exact or the plating isn’t perfect. Not fancy or unpretentious are also words to describe a rustic dish. In fact in Italian, Rustico means sloppy.
With a chili, adding the term rustic means you should see a variety of vegetables added to the stew along with rough chops, possibly more seasoning variations and a longer cooking time to marry the flavors.
We will achieve this by first sautéing the harder vegetables, including diced onion and minced garlic, for 10 minutes followed by simmering for another 10 minutes. The final cooking time will be when you bake the casserole. The leftover chili liquid will cook down leaving you with an incredible burst of chili flavors. These flavors contrast with the sweetness of the potato puff which melts in your mouth.
Chili Casserole with Sweet Potato Puffs – Variations
I like to add my Tangy Lime Sour Cream to the top to add a couple more dimensions to this dish. To the taste buds, this vegan sour cream adds a tanginess with a nice creamy mouthfeel.
You can also add sliced green onion, cilantro, parsley, hot sauce, shredded vegan cheese or avocado slices.
If you like tot casseroles, you may also like my Vegan Breakfast Tater Tot Casserole. Tofu Scramble, Vegan Sausage, Cheesy Gravy Sauce & Tots!
Let’s get to it!
Chili CasseroleCourse: MainCuisine: AmericanDifficulty: Easy
Sweet Potato Puffs
sweet potato + tater puffs + chili = yes, yes you should make me! 😉
onion, 1/2 large diced (approx 1 cup)
garlic, 4 cloves minced
celery, 2 stalks sliced (approx 1 cup)
carrot, 2 sliced (approx 1 cup)
green bell pepper, 1 diced (approx 1 cup)
chili powder, 2 tbsp.
cumin ground, 2 tsp.
smoked paprika, 2 tsp.
unsweetened cocoa powder, 2 tsp.
oregano dried, 1 tsp.
cayenne, 1/8-1/4 tsp. (optional)
salt, 3/4 tsp. + 2 pinches
black pepper ground, 1/4 tsp.
black beans, 1 15 oz can drained & rinsed
pinto beans, 1 15 oz can drained & rinsed
red kidney beans, 1 15 oz can drained & rinsed
diced fire roasted tomatoes, 1 28 oz can or 2 15 oz cans
water, 1/4 cup
kale, 2 cups chopped
sweet potato puffs, 2 bags – you will use close to 1 1/2 bags (85-95 puffs)
- In a 3-quart lidded pan or a 6-quart dutch oven over medium heat, add oil.
- Once warm, add onion, garlic, celery, carrot and bell pepper. Sprinkle with two pinches of salt. Turn to coat. Sauté for 10 minutes; stir occasionally.
- After 10 minutes, add all of your dry spices except for the rest of the salt and the black pepper. Stir to coat all of your vegetables.
- Let cook, continuing to stir for about a minute; until you smell the fragrance of the spices.
- Add beans and tomatoes. Stir well. Bring to a boil then turn heat down to simmer for 10 minutes; stir occasionally.
- Preheat oven 425 degrees.
- The last minute of cooking, add salt, pepper & kale. Stir well. Turn off heat. Let cool for 5 minutes.
- In a 9×13 casserole dish, pour in chili. Smooth out to make sure it’s even.
- Place sweet potato puffs on top in one layer evenly across all of the chili.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes; the tops of the puffs will be crunchy.
- Let cool for 5 minutes.
- Optional: When serving, top your casserole with Jen’s Vegan Eats Tangy Lime Sour Cream, sliced green onion, cilantro, parsley, hot sauce, shredded vegan cheese or avocado slices.
- Calories noted do not contain Jen’s Vegan Eats Tangy Lime Sour Cream calories added in the pictures.