Black Bean Chilli with Avocado Lime Salsa

12 Apr

 I bought a pack of dried black beans last week because, as you know, I am doing a detox which means lots of beans, chickpeas, lentils etc. As I have mentioned before, I have got a bit of a habit of buying dried legumes and then never using them, therefore I have a cupboard full of loads of different types of dals, beans and lentils. I was determined, this time, to use them straight away because I’ve never cooked with black beans before. Not just because I couldn’t fit them in the cupboard…

I did a bit of research and found out that most people advise soaking the beans overnight before cooking them, so this is what I did. Very organised of me, I know. I think it cuts down on the cooking time. A lot of colour comes out of the beans into the water which is quite alarming, you discard this water and cook the beans in clean water or a mixture of water & stock, which is what I did.  Another tip is not to season the beans until they are nearly cooked. If you cook them in salted water it makes them tough apparently.

I had to go Mexican on the flavours here. I lot of the recipes I saw using black beans were for soup which you can easily do by adding more stock or water. I wanted something a bit more substantial for dinner. You could also serve it with some corn tortillas/nachos for scooping up the chilli and avocado salsa which would be great for entertaining. Put a big bowl of the chilli with a dish of the avocado salsa and a pile of corn tortillas/nachos and any other extras like grated cheese, sour cream, chopped spring onions and fresh coriander on the  table. Just let everyone help themselves “family style”.

Black Bean Chilli with Avocado Lime Salsa

serves 3, vegan, gluten-free

  • 250 gr dried black beans (you can used 500 gr cooked just rinse and drain them and add them in with the tinned tomatoes and a bit of veg stock)
  • 500 ml clean water
  • 500 ml veg stock
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, finely diced
  • 1 stick celery, finely chopped
  • 1 green pepper, deseeded and diced
  • 2 or 3 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1/2 tsp thyme
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp chilli powder (or more if you like)
  • 2 or 3 tbsp chipotle chilli salsa (or chipotle chillis in adobo)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tin (400 gr) chopped tomatoes
  • 150 gr sweetcorn
  • 2 or 3 tbsp tomato puree (tomate frito)
  • green parts of spring onion finely chopped for garnish
  • coriander leaves for garnish

Rinse the beans and pick out any foreign bodies. Put them in a large bowl, cover with cold water and leave to soak overnight.

Drain the beans and put them in a saucepan with the veg stock and clean water, bring to the boil, cover and simmer for 1- 1 & 1/2 hours until the beans are tender.

When the beans are nearly cooked heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat then add the cumin seeds & coriander seeds. When they start to pop add the onion, celery, carrot and green pepper and a pinch of salt. Cook for about 5 minutes until softened and the onions are translucent then add the garlic and cook for a further minute. Stir in the tomato puree, chipotle salsa, chilli powder, ground cumin, bay leaves, oregano, thyme and tinned tomatoes. Season well with salt & black pepper and add sweetcorn.

When the beans are cooked remove two ladles full of beans and stock to a bowl or processor and blend until smooth.  If the rest of the beans are really liquidy tip out some of the cooking liquid and reserve it in case you need it later. Pour the blended beans back into the rest of the beans, stir and add into the tomato mixture. Cook for a further 10 minutes and then check seasoning. (You can add back some of the bean cooking liquid or veg stock now if you want it more soupy).

For the Avocado Lime Salsa

  • 1 avocado, roughly mashed
  • 1 spring onion, finely chopped
  • the juice of 1 lime
  • 1/2 clove garlic, finely minced
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 red chilli,deseeded & finely chopped
  • salt & black pepper
  • fresh coriander, leaves & stalks, finely chopped

Mash all the ingredients together in a bowl and taste for seasoning. More lime/salt/ chilli/coriander?

Serve in warmed bowls topped with a dollop of the avocado salsa, some chopped spring onions and coriander leaves.

The black beans have a lovely flavour and a surprising creaminess which makes this a really comforting, spicy dish perfect to eat in front of the TV with a spoon or equally good for casual entertaining.

And if you needed any more incentive: Avocados are rich in vitamin E and alphacarotene, both powerful antioxidants that help prevent furring of the arteries and heart disease. They also contain monounsaturated fat which lowers blood cholesterol as well as essential omega 6 fats that promote healthy skin. People have commented on how well I look, it must be the avocados….!!


19 Responses to “Black Bean Chilli with Avocado Lime Salsa”

  1. Medeja April 12, 2011 at 12:13 pm #

    I like chili, but I have never tried vegetarian version 🙂 and that salsa sounds really fresh tasting 🙂

  2. fooddreamer April 12, 2011 at 1:42 pm #

    Wow, I just love all of the flavours here. Big thumbs up!

  3. Dani April 12, 2011 at 1:58 pm #

    Black bean chili is a winter favorite around here. I often make it with diced sweet potato. That avocado lime salsa looks great.

  4. Susan April 12, 2011 at 2:19 pm #

    Yum! Black bean chili! I never knew tht cooking the beans in salted water makes them tough! Knew to soak overnight any dry beans to cut cooking time, though. Your spicy chili looks wonderful, especially with the guacamole …

    A question for you about gluten-free baking… what are your favored grain/vegetable flours and do you use xanthan gum or another ingredient to increase loft of the baked cake/muffin/bread/etc?

    • foodblogandthedog April 12, 2011 at 4:29 pm #

      As I’ve only just started baking gluten free, I’m not an expert but today I used ground almonds as a substitute for flour which I love the taste of and also the moistness it gives. I used bicarbonate of soda instead of baking powder for an oatmeal cookie, don’t know how it would be for a cake or muffin though. I’m still learning…

  5. Megan April 12, 2011 at 2:44 pm #

    I love that you put a total Mexican spin on this. It looks delicious! Thanks for sharing..

  6. Meghan April 12, 2011 at 4:13 pm #

    Love that you did a vegetarian version! The flavors sound amazing and beautiful presentation!

  7. The Travelling Chopsticks April 12, 2011 at 5:53 pm #

    Another fantastic looking dish – I’m not a vegetarian, but I love including lots of vegetetarian meals into my week. This looks like a winner!

  8. Kelly April 12, 2011 at 7:03 pm #

    I’m a sucker for chili and love that it’s vegetarian! I just got off a great fruit fast/raw detox that worked really well. Good luck on yours! Cheers!!
    Kelly @

  9. Stephanie @ okie dokie artichokie April 12, 2011 at 7:10 pm #

    Loving the fresh avocado lime salsa! Always reminds me of Summer…and with this sudden onslaught of warm weather here in MI these past few days, I’m craving it even more. I have yet to try cooking dried beans, but am definitely adding it to my “to-do” list for the next couple months. Looks like your chili had tons of flavor — yum!

  10. Caroline April 12, 2011 at 11:01 pm #

    This looks fantastic! Yum!

  11. happywhennothungry April 13, 2011 at 3:34 am #

    This looks delicious! I’m glad your detox is going well and that you’re creating these amazing dishes. Nice job!!!

  12. Amy's Cooking Adventures April 13, 2011 at 3:46 am #

    Yummy! I love avocado & black beans, but never thought to pair them in chili–bravo!

  13. tiffany April 13, 2011 at 4:06 am #

    I definitely wouldn’t need any more incentive to try this chili! YUM! And I totally didn’t know that you weren’t suppose to salt your beans early in the cooking process. Thanks for dropping the knowledge! 🙂

  14. Clarkie @ Beloved Green April 13, 2011 at 7:24 pm #

    I really love black beans, you have so many wonderful flavors going on here.

  15. Mama J April 14, 2011 at 2:26 pm #

    Love the contrast of the Avocado Lime Salsa on top. Yum!

  16. sarah April 14, 2011 at 6:56 pm #

    Wow. Looks so good! Brings me back to living in Texas.

  17. Shari April 15, 2011 at 2:08 am #

    Yum – don’t you just wish sometimes that you could press a button on your computer and this food would come to you? I would really like to be eating this right now.

    Shari from


  1. Chickpea Salad with Mexican Mango Dressing « the taste space – steam, bake, boil, shake! - May 5, 2011

    […] has seen some extra hits recently. Cinco de Mayo: a celebration of Mexican culture (with lots of great Mexican dishes). Who needs an excuse to get together with friends over […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

food to glow

feel good food that's good for you

Pease Pudding

Just another weblog

Chica Andaluza

Sometimes Up a Mountain in Andalucia and sometimes Down by the Sea on the English South Coast

Agrigirl's Blog

Placemaking for Healthier Communities and a Healthier Planet

Kitchen Operas

Gluten-Free Deliciousness

for the love of yum

A girl who loves to cook fresh, fun, and global cuisine.

The Path To Authenticity

Mind, Body & Spiritual Growth

%d bloggers like this: