Caregiver Crockpot Chicken Quinoa Chili

Beans are one of the cheapest proteins out there. And when mixed with a grain (quinoa, in this case) you get a complete protein. 

Win-win for your health. And win-win for your wallet since both beans and grains are just plain cheap.

I found this recipe on the blog Not Enough Cinnamon, written by a lovely French woman, Marie (her veggie crockpot lasagna is also a favorite). Marie made a few adjustments to the original recipe, as have I. 

I adjusted the heat levels by changing up the spices used, including adding curry powder and reducing chili powder. Plus, I lowered the sodium content by using no salt added canned tomatoes and reduced-sodium canned beans and chicken broth. Items that are surprisingly easy to find in your local grocery store these days... even my store brand is far better quality than expected.

This chili is flavorful, simple to throw together, healthy... and the best part? It makes a ton! At 16 servings, the 4 of us are able to enjoy it 2 nights in a row. Then, I freeze the rest for 2 more meals in the future, which means 2 more nights of no cooking or dishes. 

The perfect meal for those caring for kids, parents, friends in need... the list goes on.

Caregiver Crockpot Chicken Quinoa Chili

Slightly Adapted from Not Enough Cinnamon
Serves 16

4 c. lower-sodium chicken broth
1 c. quinoa, rinsed
2 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. curry powder
1 tsp. ground coriander
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp. salt
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2- 15oz. cans of low sodium red kidney beans drained and rinsed
3- 15oz. cans of no salt added diced tomatoes, undrained

Combine all ingredients except chicken in a crockpot sprayed with non-stick spray. Stir to combine and then add in chicken. Cook on low for 6 hours, or high for 3-4 hours. Remove chicken and place in a bowl. Shred with 2 forks and then add back to chili. Stir and serve.

Freeze leftovers in airtight container.

Notes: To speed up the cooking process, cut the chicken breasts in a few pieces. And, for those not liking a lot of spice, decrease the red pepper flakes, or serve with a dollop of sour cream when serving to help cool it down. Corn can also be added at the end to add some sweetness. 

And to stretch it even further, this chili is great over a baked potato or sweet potato, with a spinach salad on the side for a very healthy and nourishing meal.