Pumpkin Bean Chili with Polenta Crisps

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Pumpkin, apple cider, polenta, and chili beans come together in this big pot of soul-warming, pumpkin bean chili. Ready-made polenta makes easy work of the Polenta Crisps.  Poblano pepper adds an extra depth of flavor, and the pumpkin puree makes it smooth and silky. Bring together the orange chili with the bright yellow polenta, and it looks like autumn in your bowl.  If you don’t have the nutritional yeast on hand for the Polenta Crisps, just bake the polenta without it, and you’ll still have a delicious dish.  We like the flavor and aroma of the nutritional yeast, so we usually have some on hand, for dishes like this one, or for sprinkling on popcorn on movie night.

pumpkin bean chili

Pumpkin Bean Chili with Polenta Crisps

By September 29, 2014


  • 1/2 medium - onion, chopped
  • 1 medium - red, orange, or yellow bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 medium - poblano chili pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 3 medium - garlic cloves, minced or pressed
  • 2 tsp - ground cumin
  • 2 tsp - chili powder
  • 1 15 oz can - cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 15 oz can - dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 15 oz can - pumpkin puree
  • 3 cups - water
  • 1 cup - tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup - apple cider
  • 1 18 oz pkg - ready-made refrigerated polenta


  1. In a large pot over medium-high heat, sauté the onion, bell pepper, and poblano pepper until they start to brown. Add the remaining ingredients, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook for 30 minutes. Salt to taste.
  2. While the chili is cooking, slice the polenta into rounds, about 1/4" thick. Place the rounds on a parchment-lined baking sheet and broil for 6 minutes. Carefully watch them to prevent burning, but they should get brown near the end of the broiling time. Flip the rounds over, and broil another 5-6 minutes until browned.
  3. To serve, ladle chili into a bowl and top with several of the Polenta Crisps.

Nutrition Information

Nutrition (per serving): 363 calories, 77% calories from carbohydrates, 17% calories from protein, 7% calories from fat, 16.8g fiber.

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