So I have talked before about how my kids don’t like veggies. I put things on their plate, regardless, but I can’t tell you how many times I have heard ,”I don’t like broccoli!” In order for me to feel better about their veggie intake, I will sneak veggies into a dish. I can’t take credit for this idea. I first learned about it from a great book called The Sneaky Chef. She suggests still serving veggies, but making purees and mixing in fruits and veggies into foods kids like and you know they will eat! So I have a variation of a recipe I found online, mixing in a few things. My girls love this chili and don’t even notice the carrots and red pepper!20160607_165729 (1)

Chili with Sneaky Veggies

Total Time: 35 min

*There are two ways to sneak the veggies in. Either chop them up small or if your kids are really observant, you can puree them and mix them in. To puree, simply put the veggies in a food processor/blender with a little water.


  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ cup chopped red onion
  • ½ cup chopped green pepper
  • 1 pound lean ground beef or turkey
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder, or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • ¼ teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 (15 ounce) can chopped tomatoes , or larger
  • 1 (26 ounce) carton low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 a red pepper, chopped OR 1/2 cup red pepper puree*
  • 2 carrots, chopped OR ½ cup carrot puree* (you can cook the carrots beforehand for a smoother texture)
  • ¼ cup cornmeal
  • 1 (15 ounce) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (15 ounce) can chili beans
  • ¼ cup of shredded cheese (can be cheddar, jack, whatever you like!)


  1. Coat the bottom of a large pot with cooking spray and set it over medium heat. Add the oil and onions and garlic. Cook until soft, about 1-2 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, sprinkle the ground meat with chili powder, salt, paprika, and pepper. Add the meat to the pot and cook, stirring occasionally, until the meat is no longer pink. About 5-6 minutes.
  3. Stir in the tomatoes. Add the broth, red pepper puree, carrot puree, cornmeal, and stir well. Bring to boil, then reduce heat and simmer, covered, 15 to 20 minutes.
  4. Stir in the beans and cook a little longer. About 5 minutes.
  5. Serve and garnish with cheese

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Please let me know if this recipe works for you and your family! And what ways do you sneak veggies into your meals?

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