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Chili is a comfort food, but mostly a fall and winter dish due to its heavy nature. We were having a vegetarian friend over for dinner and chili came to mind, but it being a spring day, I wanted to go lighter. I remembered seeing an interesting chili recipe in Make It Fast: Cook It Slow, so I dug it out and happily had all of the ingredients. Paired with cornbread and a salad, we had a fairly quick and easy dinner.

White Bean Apple Chili

White Bean Apple Chili

In addition to finding the recipe listed in the cookbook above, O’Dea also has it on her blog. Check out the recipe here. The white beans I had were dried and since I hadn’t planned ahead, I followed the quick soak method first. I let them sit for two hours instead of one, as I find they’re not soft enough after one hour. White kidney beans were mentioned on the blog as one possibility, but I used Great Northern beans, which are tiny and seemed perfect with the tiny bites of apple.  Since we’re dairy free, I made a few changes to the recipe– non-dairy butter in place of butter, applesauce instead of yogurt; I also used only a tiny sprinkle of chili powder, since we don’t like our food hot. I added our favorite cornbread (Sneaky Chef‘s recipe works beautifully as gluten-free, is awesome with real corn in the cornbread, and we love the little orange flecks that come from using veggie purees as she instructs)  and my husband was shockingly home in time to make a salad.  Those who eat dairy enjoyed theirs with shredded cheddar on top, and there was just enough leftover for one of us to look forward to it for tomorrow’s lunch. Yum. The apple melted right in but gave a slightly sweet note to each bite, and everyone was happy.

Share your family’s favorite recipes as we lighten our palates and move to fun, cooler spring and summer meals. To find out what’s new in our kitchen, stop by, or become a fan on Facebook. Peruse past blogs and keep current with new blogs at

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