Sweet Potato Black Bean Chili

You know what this cold, rainy fall weather makes me want to do? Nest.

That’s right. Nest.

My Saturday night consisted of grocery shopping at the big Whole Foods in downtown SLC, doing laundry, vacuuming and a little cooking. Pretty wild, huh? I know I just described some people’s worst nightmare, but to me, it’s heavenly.

Friday night one of my friends convinced me to go out to celebrate my birthday. I told her I was reluctant because I had zero desire to put on jeans and actual shoes and oh it would be so much work to change out of fitness clothes. She assured me it would be fun and casual so out I went on a rainy Friday night. It was fun and I stuck it out all the way until 10:30. Yep. I really know how to rage.

I probably have now put people to sleep.

Have you ever seen such a tired face?

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Back to cold weather nesting. When I was at Whole Foods I was blown away by how many vegan, gluten free baked goods exist. And all the vegan, g.f. baking mixes! I mean Holy Cow! I wanted to eat everything! But that’s a slippery slope so I resisted the temptation and stuck to my shopping list which mainly consisted of fresh vegetables. All those baked goods look delicious but so loaded with sugar. No bueno.

Let me just tell you as a side note. Even though I’m off my cleanse I’ve still been avoiding sugar, except when I’m being force-fed cake. That’s a joke. Really truly I haven’t been eating sugar, chocolate, agave nectar, etc and I feel GREAT! I really notice it running. Running just feels effortless…well maybe not effortless, but it feels a lot better than it used to! Even running up hills, I just feel light on my feet. I know that was an annoying statement and people probably want to slap me now. I’m just saying I feel much better not eating sugar. So that gives me motivation to stay away from sweets even though I loved baked goods more than anyone.

Back to food…

This cold, rainy weather also makes me want SOUP! I got the idea for a sweet potato black bean soup from pinterest so I got to researching and combined about 4 recipes to come up with this. This was so fast and easy to make that by the time the soup was done I had my kitchen cleaned up and this soup will be lunch for the week. That’s what I’m talking about.

Sweet Potato Black Bean Soup

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large yellow onion, diced small
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons chili powder (less if you don’t want it spicy)
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
2 serrano peppers, seeded and diced
1 28-oz can crushed or diced tomatoes (I run them through the food processor so there are ZERO tomato chunks)
3 cups water
6 lbs yams
2 carrots, peeled and diced
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 bunch cilantro, diced up stems and all
2 tablespoons lime juice

In a large stockpot, sauté the onion in oil over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes. While the onion cooks prep the other vegetables. Then, add the garlic, cumin, salt, chili powder and cayenne pepper. Sauté 1 minute to “open up” the spices. Add the chipotles, tomatoes and water. Stir. Add the yams and carrots. Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and allow to simmer for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes add the beans and cook uncovered for another 5 minutes. Last, stir in the cilantro and lime juice. Store in the fridge.

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