Lentil and Butternut Squash Chili

This chili is so much lighter than most chili’s I’ve tasted and definitely lighter than my usual go to the Sweet Potato Chili. Cutting down on the beans by adding lentils instead makes it that it is still rich in protein without the heaviness of too many beans. And switching out the sweet potato for some butternut squash really sealed the deal for me. In my husbands words “this one’s a winner”.

One pot meals like these make me so happy. I make a huge batch, either freeze some for later use, or just have leftovers for a few days. And this method guarantees my kids will get a good dose nutritious delicious vegetables in one meal. As with most one pot meals, I find that it tastes better the next day, although my family had no problem eating more than half of it as soon as it came off the stove.

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Ingredients:

  • 2 TBS olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 TBS cacao powder
  • 1 TBS cumin
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1 TBS chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 cups butternut squash, chopped
  • 1 cup dry french lentils
  • 5 cups water
  • 1 large red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 large zucchini, chopped
  • 1/2 jalapeño, seeds removed
  • zest of 1 lime
  • 28 oz can of diced organic tomatoes
  • 2 cups cooked beans (I mixed white and black)
  • 1 tsp salt

Steps:

  • In a large pot, heat oil over medium heat, add onions and sautee until they become slightly transluscent
  • add all the spices and keep cooking until the aroma has come out, 2 minutes about
  • add butternut squash, lentils, and water and bring to a boil (this is usually when I chop the rest of my veggies)
  • reduce heat, add all other ingredients except for beans
  • simmer on low for about 30-40 minutes or until lentils are fully cooked
  • add the beans 10 minutes before done
  • taste and adjust spices and salt according to preference.

I ate mine with cilantro and avocado, because avocado makes everything taste better 🙂

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Butternut Squash Soup

This soup is sweet and creamy, as well as easy, satisfying and comforting. Thanks to the recently added hidden red lentils to this recipe, it is also high in protein.

This is one of my favorite winter soups. One I grew up eating. Since we had an enormous vegetable garden, I grew up eating the highest quality organic vegetables, and we ate mostly from that garden. Which means that during the winter we ate a lot of squash and loads of soups. Although I complained a lot as a kid, I am so grateful that my parents instilled such good eating habits in us and showed me first hand what real food is.

This soup reminds me of home. We would eat it at my grandma’s house too and she would always serve it with shredded cheese. The kind that melts and makes long strings. Mmmmmmmm.

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Ingredients:

  • 1 large sweet potato, wished and roughly chopped
  • 1 large butternut squash, peeled, seeded and roughly chopped
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 2 TBS olive oil
  • 3/4 cup red lentils
  • 7 cups of liquid (I used half vegetable stock, half water)
  • 1 TBS salt

Steps:

  • In a large pot, sautee the onions until slightly transparent
  • add all other ingredients
  • bring to a boil then reduce heat to medium low
  • cook, covered, until the vegetables are soft, about 25 minutes
  • blend everything together, either with an immersion blender or a stand up blender

This soup will keep for several days in the fridge, and is also a great meal to make ahead for a lazy parenting night.

Butternut Squash Muffins

I went to go visit my friends who just had a baby yesterday. As I always do when I visit friends with a newborn, I bring something to eat. Even if friends with newborns say they need nothing, don’t take their word for it. Having 3 kids myself, I know how nice it is to not have to think about food when all I want to do is cuddle with my baby, or how nice it is to get a little unexpected treat from a loving friend. So for them, I created these butternut squash muffins. I originally intended to make these with pumpkin but had some butternut that I needed to use. I have been making a version of these muffins for years. I love them as they are light and fluffy. I started making these with carrots instead of the squash and would bring them to my daughter’s preschool when it was my day to provide snack. They were always a hit. As usual, I made a big batch so I could freeze some to have on hand for weeks to come.

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Ingredients:

  • 3 cups flour (I mixed spelt and buckwheat)
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp cardamom
  • 1/2 cup apple sauce
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded butternut squash
  • 3/4 cups maple syrup
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 3/4 cups chocolate chips ( I normally use raisins, but I felt like being a little decadent here)

Steps:

  • Preheat oven to 350 F
  • in a large bowl mix all the dry ingredients
  • in a blender blend all other ingredients just enough so everything is well mixed
  • combine both, add chocolate chips, mix
  • grease some muffin tins
  • fill them up
  • bake 10-12 minutes for mini muffins, about 20 minutes for bigger ones
  • let cool on a rack before devouring (Just so you don’t burn your mouth)

Butternut Squash Shake

I bought my first seasonal butternut squash at the market this past week. I am excited for this season and all the fun recipes I will be creating! I chose to bring in this Fall  season with a delicious shake. It’s kinda like pumpkin pie in a cup, but really cold.

After making it I envisioned so many alternatives to making this, the possibilities are endless!! So glad the season is just starting 😉

I wish I would’ve taken a better picture, but I had 3 little children tugging on me as I was photographing their dessert. Their patience was running thin and I decided to stop the torture and give them their treat. I will probably be making this again, and will hopefully get a better picture.

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Ingredients:

  • 1 cup chopped butternut squash/ 200 grammes de butternut
  • 1 tray on coconut ice cubes (my trays make 16 ice cubes)– For this I planned a few hours ahead and froze coconut milk in an ice cube tray, the good kind coconut milk, with the cream and all./ 16 glacons de lait de noix de coco ( j’utilise du lait de coco soit fait frais ou en cannette ou carton, et je congele au joins 4 heures)
  • 4 medjool dates/ 4 dates medjool
  • 1 large frozen banana, sliced/ 1 banana gelee, coupee
  • 1 1/2 cups almond milk/ 1/3 de litre de lait d’amande (Ou un peu plus selon la texture desiree)
  • 1 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice/ 2 cuillieres a caffe d’epices d’autumn melangees (canelle, noix de muscade, clous de girofle)

Steps:

  • put everything in a blender and blast it on high until desired consistency/ mettez tout dans un blender et faites tourner a fond
  • I topped this with a few chopped pieces of dates and crushed pecans/ j’ai ajoutee des morceaux de noid de pecans et de dates pour decorer
  • this made enough for 2 adults and 2 children/ ca a fait assez pour 2 adults et 2 enfants