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TURKEY BEAN CHILI

One pot meals are some of my favorite dishes because it doesn’t require a lot of time especially when you don’t have a lot of time to begin with. And because it’s so simple, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t take advantage of the ease for all-around healthy food.

You can’t get any more well balanced in a meal than this turkey chili. Plenty of protein from the turkey and beans. Complex carbs from the beans with TONS of fiber from both the beans and veggies. And not to forget to mention, there is no flavor lacking in this chili. Don’t let the ground turkey concern you! Cumin is the secret to making ground turkey (or ground chicken) taste similar to beef. But if you must, you can simply use a lean ground beef instead.

I personally use half ground turkey and half ground turkey breast. The ground turkey breast is very lean with a little higher protein content, only about 1.5g of fat per 4oz and no saturated fat like regular ground turkey. It’s a fair compromise to really make it healthy. Actually, it’s just to make room for me to top it off with some of my Homemade Queso Fresco cheese, haha! For those who are diabetic, with 8 servings in this chili you’ll get about 16g net carbs which isn’t so bad for how filling it is. You can make your portion smaller and enjoy a side of veggies or a salad to keep the carbs down more.

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TURKEY BEAN CHILI
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. In a large pot over medium-high heat cover the bottom of the pot with olive oil and sauté the bell peppers, onions, jalapeno, and garlic stirring until the onions are translucent.
  2. Add the ground turkey, chili powder, cumin, paprika, dried oregano, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne pepper, and dried bay leaf. Use a wooden spoon to break apart the ground turkey and mix everything together.
  3. Once the ground turkey is nearly cooked after about several minutes, add the canned crushed tomatoes, vegetable stock, and worchestershire sauce. Bring to a boil then reduce the temperature to a steady simmer for about 45 minutes uncovered. Stir once in a while.
  4. Add the black beans and kidney beans the last 5 minutes.
Recipe Notes

Revised: September 7, 2017

MEXICO CITY REFRIED BEANS

In the time I spent in Mexico City, I realized a lot of restaurants were serving refried BLACK beans. Sometimes with a subtle flavor that I at first wasn’t able to pinpoint what it was. Until I asked, it turns out sometimes families will put a tiny bit of Mexican ground cinnamon to it. And I have to tell you, it’s so wonderful that when I went back home I made an attempt to recreate this batch of heaven. I stopped buying the canned refried pinto beans and was more than willing to make my own instead. It takes maybe 10 minutes to do and you can make this in a larger batch in about the same amount of time. I honestly don’t miss the standard stuff you find in most Mexican-American restaurants.

If you can’t find Mexican ground cinnamon, don’t worry! Using regular ground cinnamon is just fine. You’re only using a tiny bit anyways. I stayed away from the traditional lard and use olive oil just because I wanna keep it on the healthier side. There’s a give and take with everything with me if I want to enjoy amazing food and still reap healthy benefits. Also, you don’t have to use finely chopped onions (although it is pretty yummy this way), you can use onion powder instead. And of course, with these beans you can make your ideal nachos, put in a burrito of your choice, serve with eggs and chorizo. And if you’re looking for a healthy alternative to chorizo that is just as spot on in flavor, you gotta try my Tofu Chorizo. It only takes minutes to make too. Some times I’ll make a decent amount of both and have it available for the week, whether I incorporate both or one of them for breakfast, lunch or dinner. This is truly the beauty besides taste; of Mexican food right here. You can eat it anytime, with all kinds of things!

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MEXICO CITY REFRIED BEANS
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Drizzle the bottom of a medium sauté pan with olive oil, enough to coat the bottom. Over medium-high heat, sauté the onions and epazote until translucent.
  2. Add the black beans, vegetable stock, garlic powder, cinnamon, and sea salt. Stir until everything is simmering.
  3. Reduce the heat to low and use a potato masher to mash the beans to your preferred consistency. Add additional vegetable stock a little bit at a time if it gets too dry.
  4. Taste to see if it needs any more seasoning before serving.

SPICY SWEET POTATO TACOS

I shared a picture of these tacos on my Facebook page recently feeling completely unsure whether it would be a waste of time or not to share this recipe. Most people typically expect some kind of meat in their meals so it left me undecided. I know I shouldn’t really care especially if it’s good food because someone out there will enjoy it BUT lets face it… I’m female. Italian… I’m a pleaser. Enough said LOL! I will not disappoint you with these. They’re sweet. Spicy. Warm in flavor all the while still very fresh tasting. And it keeps well in the fridge for a week!

Of course you don’t have to use butter lettuce as the tortilla replacement. By all means, use your favorite tortilla if you like. Although I wanted to complete this healthy meal with a lighter, healthier option. Cabbage and Swiss chard are super yummy tortilla substitutes too.  I’ve added avocado to it and even tried it with a little bit of my Roasted Jalapeno Guacamole which is pretty damn awesome! OH! How can I forget cheese… yeah, it’s kinda against my religion to have tacos with out cheese… yet I resisted this time for the recipe. That doesn’t mean you can’t do WHAT-EVER-YOU-WANT!

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SPICY SWEET POTATO TACOS
Servings
tacos
Ingredients
Servings
tacos
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Toss the sweet potato, cumin, paprika, coriander, cayenne pepper, and olive oil together. Place into a baking dish and bake at 400 F degrees for 15 - 20 minutes.
  2. Over medium-high heat saute the onions and garlic with olive oil until the onions are translucent. Add the black beans, corn, sweet potato, rice, honey, and lime juice. Stir everything together and let it cook for about 3 minutes or until everything is warmed through.
  3. Serve in individual butter lettuce leaves. Garnish with cilantro.

MEXICAN INSPIRED PASTA

I remember it seemed so recent many of us were freezing our butts off and now the weather is heating up faster than I can even get anything done! Okay, so I’m exaggerating a little but seriously the heat seems to be kicking in gear quick. So let’s lighten things up a little why don’t we! I just spent a good amount of time home in California and it reinforced how much I miss the Mexican food there. A lot of it is very much so Baja Mexico influenced and so I wanted to bring that into the kitchen with a unique flare of fun all in one skillet.

There’s a lot of good health going on in this mix. If you’re watching your carb intake then just omit the pasta altogether. Or if you’re not feeling the pasta then replace it with your favorite rice. Keep it heart healthy by leaving out the cheese. I use a lot of ground turkey instead of ground beef for general health benefits but by all means it doesn’t mean you can’t use your choice of meat. On a busy day and not much of a desire to be in the kitchen for a long time, this is one of my latest favorite go to.  I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

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MEXICAN INSPIRED PASTA
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servings
Ingredients
Servings
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Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Bring a pot of water to a boil and cook the pasta according to the directions on the package. Drain the pasta and set aside until you're ready.
  2. In a large skillet over medium-high heat drizzle about 2 tablespoons of olive oil and saute the onions for two minutes.
  3. Add the ground turkey, salt, ground cumin, and use a wooden spoon to break up the ground turkey into fine pieces. Stir occasionally until it's almost cooked thoroughly.
  4. Then stir in the salsa and tomato sauce until everything is heated through. After a couple minutes, add in the black beans and corn. Stir for another minute or two, again until everything is heated through.
  5. Lastly, mix in the elbow pasta, cheese, tomatoes, and avocado for a minute before serving.
  6. Garnish with chopped cilantro.

EVERYTHING CHOPPED SALAD

Spring time confession here! So I’ve developed a little bit of an obsession with chopped salads. Slightly. They’re just so much tastier when everything chopped up small in unison! And it makes from eating otherwise boring veggies or eating the same stuff all the time the same way THAT MUCH BETTER! This salad has everything in it. Yet again. I kinda get caught up in doing that and can’t help it. It’s hard to let things go to waste. You can tell by the ingredient list there’s a metric crap ton of stuff. You can make it exactly so, omit some, add some, replace some, whatever your heart desires and I’m pretty damn sure it’s going to taste as good. I’ll tell you why…

A lot of the ingredients in this salad comes from the little salsa-succotash-esque that I put on top of my Chicken Lettuce Tacos. I had some leftover from having those delicious tacos the other night and didn’t want it to waste. Sooo I dumped it into a bowl of chopped lettuce among other added goodies. And VIOLA! There’s no guilt here. This is not one of those salads you get at some chain restaurant that will bust your belt at 2,000 calories. So don’t worry. It’s just a butt load of fiber goodness! FYI, I never use store bought salad dressing. With these salads you don’t need them! With lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper brings out the flavors and natural sugars in the fruit and veggies.

OH! And if you have leftovers, it should keep fairly decent for a couple of days.

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EVERYTHING CHOPPED SALAD
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Put all of the ingredients in a large bowl and fold everything until well mixed together.