Picture this: You are on your way home from soccer practice with Timmy and since you haven't gone grocery shopping this week, all you have in the fridge are a couple of onions and some canned beans in the cupboard. You don't want McD's because you had that stuff yesterday and although those fries ARE delicious, they are NOT nutritious. What do you do?!

I'll tell you what to do: make Chili.

You can quickly improvise and omit the ingredients you don't have as this lunch option is very versatile. My chili varies because I often forget to buy an ingredient at the store but it makes it more fun, having the chili be a little different. The combination of beans and vegetables, paired with cheese and/or sour cream make a filling and wholesome meal. You can add soy ground beef for extra texture and protein.

From start to finish, this recipe takes about 20 minutes.

Here is a list of ingredients (most are exchangeable)

1 clove garlic

4 celery stalks

2 tablespoons of olive oil

1 can of fire roasted (or regular) tomatoes

1 green bell pepper

1 medium sweet onion

3/4 Cup of frozen corn

1 can of black beans

1 can of kidney beans (or bean medley)

1 can of lentils

1 can garbanzo beans

1/3 packet taco seasoning (i use a low sodium version)

1 roasted red bell pepper (optional)

1 tablespoon of ketchup (trust me)

ground pepper and salt to taste

a dollop of sour cream

Add olive oil and garlic to the pan. Then add chopped onion and sautee for a couple of minutes on medium heat. In goes the chopped green bell pepper, chopped celery, and taco seasoning. Once the onion is caramelized and the bell pepper gets a crisp around the edges, add the canned tomato, beans and lentils. Let simmer for about 10 minutes on low heat. Add the frozen corn, ketchup, and ground pepper. Let simmer for 3-5 more minutes. Take off heat and cover lightly with a lid. While the flavors marinade together, you can take this time to set the table.

Add a dollop of sour cream and/or cheese and Timmy's lunch is ready to eat!

Helpful Note: The chili will keep safely in the fridge for about a week. Or you can portion and freeze the rest, then thaw as needed. You can easily stretch this recipe and make it last for days. Can't beat that!