There have been a lot of celebrations around here lately. We’ve just had two birthdays in the house and now Easter is just around the corner. Because we really try hard to eat a healthful diet normally we tend to splurge a little during celebrations. There comes a time when you feel you’ve lost a little ground in the nutrition realm and need to make up for it fast. I’ve turned to the bean for a little help. Beans are nutritious powerhouses and are cheap. I threw together a quick chili and froze portions to be reheated as needed. Chili seems to be one of those dishes that tastes better that way.

Four-bean chili

1 can each of black, light kidney, dark kidney, and cannellini, rinsed well and drained.

1 lb grass-fed ground beef, cooked, crumbled, and drained. (You can rinse and drain the meat too to get rid of even more fat)

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 large onion, chopped

1 red bell pepper, chopped (Use the color or colors of your choice)

1 28 oz can plum tomatoes, crushed with your hand

1 28 oz can tomato sauce

garlic powder, Italian herb seasoning, and cumin, to taste (you could always use chili powder too or instead)

Saute your onion and garlic with the ground beef, add the remaining ingredients and simmer at least an hour. You could also pour everything in a slow cooker, after browning the ground beef and cooking the onions and garlic a little and allow it to cook all day.

You could cut down the amount of meat used by half or leave the meat out of this recipe, making it vegetarian, and serve it over rice or another more interesting grain.

I made the homemade chips by spraying whole wheat tortillas with olive oil, cutting them like a pizza pie and putting them on a cookie sheet into a 400 degree oven for 5 – 10 minutes. Make sure they do not get too brown but are toasted. Sprinkle with your favorite herbs and or seasonings.