Red Hot Rainbow Vegetable Chili

By Barbara Day, M.S., R.D., C.N.

This is one of my favorite chili recipes.  It’s full of colorful vegetables and lots of vitamins and minerals plus a great source of phytochemicals. Plus it’s low in calories and loaded with dietary fiber which will help fill you up on a cold winter’s night.

Nutritional Information Per Serving: 166 calories,  8 grams protein, 4 grams of fat,  27 grams of CHO,  9 grams of fiber,  675 mg sodium.

 Preparation Time: 15 minutes  Cook Time: 1 hour   

Serves:  8, 1 cup servings


  • 1 cup onion, chopped
  • ½ cup green pepper, diced
  • ½ cup red pepper, diced
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced or ¼ tsp minced garlic
  • 2 cup zucchini, chopped
  • 1 cup carrot, chopped
  • 2 cans (15 oz each) black beans, pinto beans or kidney beans, rinsed & drained
  • 2 cans (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp chili powder
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • ½ cup water
  • Pepper, to taste


In a saucepan, saute onion and green pepper in olive oil over medium heat until onions are soft and transparent about 8 minutes. Add garlic. Stir in zucchini and carrots. Cook for 2 minutes. Add beans, tomatoes, chili powder, cumin, Italian seasoning, pepper and water. Bring to a boil. Reduce and simmer for about 40 minutes until vegetables are tender.

Shopping List

  • 1 cup onion
  • green pepper
  • red pepper
  • olive oil
  • garlic cloves
  • zucchini
  • carrot
  • 2 cans (15 oz each) black beans, pinto beans or kidney beans
  • 2 cans (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes
  • chili powder
  • cumin
  • Italian seasoning

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Barbara Day, M.S., R.D., C.N., is a registered dietitian with a Master’s Degree in clinical nutrition.  The former publisher of Kentuckiana HealthFitness Magazine, Kentuckiana Healthy Woman magazine and radio show host of Health News You Can Use, Barbara has over 30 years of experience in promoting healthy lifestyles to consumers.  Barbara worked as Nutrition Consultant to the Navy SEALs (8 years) and the University of Louisville Athletic Department (10 years). Barbara has private practice, DayByDay Nutrition,, where she counsels clients on weight loss, cholesterol management, performance nutrition and an array of other medical issues.  Visit Barbara’s new website which is an on-line health & wellness magazine, Barbara writes nutrition and health columns for as well as a weekly nutrition column for the Southeast Outlook. She also designs and presents employee wellness programs to small and large businesses. Barbara is a runner, cyclist, hiker and a mother and grandmother to 11 grandchildren.    



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