Sweet Potato Chorizo Chili with Poblano-Avocado Crema. If you’ve never added potatoes to chili before, prepare to be wowed by the heartiness of this intensely flavor-packed chili. There’s a reason I’ve been making this recipe for years!
Every fall, my house goes absolutely soup-crazy. The second the slightest chill can be detected in the air, we break out the soup pot or the slow cooker, stock up on… well, stock (usually chicken stock) and our favorite veggies, and go to town.
Some weeks, there might be five different kinds of soup we throw together to warm our insides as we pile on blankets and hoodies and slippers and complain about how early the sun goes down this time of year. Sometimes we enjoy mugs of chicken noodle. Often, we fill up three bowls full of stew each because it is just that good. But what we love most of all– and what I truly can’t get enough of– is a good chili.
Now I know you chili purists out there are clutching your chests and gasping at the thought of changing up your traditional chili, but hear me out– sometimes change is good. That’s not to say that I wouldn’t love your state fair winning family recipe, but this Sweet Potato Chorizo Chili with Poblano-Avocado Crema is an entirely different beast we’re talking about here.
This chili will change everything you ever thought you knew about chili, or at least it will broaden your opinion of what “good chili” can be. With ingredients like sweet potato, chorizo, poblano peppers, chipotle peppers, avocado, hominy, black beans, and, yes, even goat cheese, how could it not be great?
By the way, tangy goat cheese goes amazingly with the spicier ingredients in this chili (and I just love it with sweet potato and black beans in general, as well), but if goat cheese weirds you out, feel free to substitute in a cheese of your choice, or go with no cheese at all. It’s not a critical part of this Sweet Potato Chorizo Chili, but I like to think of it as the finishing touch that really takes it from over-the-top-awesome to super-over-the-top-crazy-delicious-oh-my-gosh-these-flaaavors! You know what I mean?
Like most chili, this recipe requires a little bit more time than your typical last minute soup– in fact, it takes a bit longer than many of the “open these cans and dump it all together” types of chili. But I promise you, the few easy extra steps are so worth it for the heartiness and depth of flavor you get here.
Speaking of extra time, a little extra time in the fridge does nothing but good for this recipe. Leftovers taste just as amazing as (if not better than) the first day you make it. I got a reminder of that when I made this recipe again Saturday night to prepare for football Sunday, and wound up eating leftovers every single day since. I’m all out of leftovers now, but you can bet that I’d be eating Sweet Potato Chorizo Chili for breakfast if I had any!
Yes, I’m serious.
Whether you want to make it for game day tailgates, on a chilly weeknight with family, or to serve up to friends at a casual dinner get-together, I’m willing to bet that everyone who tastes this Sweet Potato Chorizo Chili with Poblano-Avocado Crema will be begging for the recipe in between a chorus of “yum”s and “this is so good”s. I’m not exaggerating; When I first made this chili, my mom even begged for the recipe (as if she doesn’t know where to find it) because she absolutely had to insert it into her fall dinner rotation. And now, what, six years later, she still adores it.
As do I. And clearly, as does James, who ate THIS ENTIRE GIGANTIC BOWL OF CHILI IN ONE SITTING after I was done taking pictures. Complete with the chorus of “yums”, to boot.
- 2 large sweet potatoes
- 1 whole head garlic
- 2 poblano peppers
- 2 tablespoons canola oil, divided
- 1 pound uncooked Mexican chorizo
- 1 white onion, diced small
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 1 (14.5 ounce) can fire-roasted diced tomatoes
- 1 chipotle pepper in adobo, from the can
- 1 (15 ounce) cans black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 (15 ounce) can hominy, drained and rinsed
- 4 tablespoons tomato paste
- Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
- 1 avocado, pit and skin removed
- Juice of 2 limes
- 2 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
- Fresh cilantro, chopped, to top
- Sliced radish, to top, optional
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with foil.
- Cut the papery top off of the head of garlic to expose the cloves. Place the garlic, sweet potatoes, and poblano peppers on the prepared baking sheet and drizzle lightly with oil. Roast for 3o minutes, then let cool until you can easily handle the potatoes.
- Meanwhile, heat the remaining oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Remove the chorizo from the casing and add to the pot. Break apart the chorizo as you would ground beef as it cooks. Cook until browned all over, about 5 minutes.
- Add the onion to the skillet and saute until translucent. Stir in the spices and cook for 1 minute. Pour in the chicken stock and bring to a boil.
- Once the sweet potatoes and peppers are cool enough to handle, use your hands to peel the skins from the potatoes and poblanos. The skins should come off easily. Chop the sweet potato into bite-sized pieces. Stem and seed the poblano peppers.
- In a blender or food processor, combine the roasted garlic (squeeze it out of the papery exterior), 1 of the roasted poblano peppers, 1 chipotle pepper, and the diced tomatoes. Process until well-combined. Pour the mixture into the pot of chili and bring back to a boil. Allow the liquid to reduce slightly, then stir in the black beans, hominy, tomato paste, and chopped sweet potato. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 30 minutes. Season with kosher salt and black pepper, to taste.
- As the chili simmers, process the remaining poblano pepper, avocado, and lime juice until smooth.
- Serve the chili warm with a dollop of the Poblano-Avocado Crema, crumbled goat cheese, chopped cilantro, and sliced radish on top.
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