Low Calorie and Low Fat Chilli

Those who have read my “A bit about me” post will know I’m a dedicated vegetarian but what they won’t know is that I’m also a healthy eating fanatic.  Remember,  beauty starts on the inside so looking after your body will always pay off.  But like everyone I have my little treats (I’m thinking Blueberry muffins) so when I’ve overindulged a few too many times throughout the day I like to have a healthy and low-fat dinner,  so I sat myself down and chose some of my favourite meals I could make a healthy spin on.  I thought I’d share my favourite recipe with everyone,  a low-fat no fry vegetarian chilli.


Half a red sweet pointed pepper
One small onion
Five large chestnut mushrooms
400g tin of chopped tomatoes (preferably with added chilli)
400g tin of ratatouille
Small tin of red kidney beans
100g Quorn mince
A level teaspoon of cayenne pepper
A level teaspoon of cumin
A level teaspoon of paprika
150ml boiling water


preparation time: 10-15 minutes (dependant on how fast you can chop)
Cooking time:  25 minutes
Serving suggestion: 2 very generous servings

1) Peel your onion and slice it in half  then chop into thin slices,  slice your red pepper in half and de-seed it then slice it thinly,  and then wash your mushrooms and slice them into eighths.

2) Put aside your prepared vegetables,  add your ratatouille,  chopped tomatoes,  kidney beans,  and spices into a large sautee pan then bring to the boil.  This base sauce will take about 5 minutes to boil and heat up sufficiently.

3)  After bringing base sauce to the boil add all your vegetables and mix thoroughly.  The vegetables should cook in the liquid of the sauce,  this means no frying so much less fat!
4)  The vegetables should be cooked nicely after 15 minutes,  but your chilli may catch after losing some of the moisture,  so I strongly recommend adding 150ml of boiling water to prevent burning.

5)  Wait for the water to fully combine with the chilli then add in your Quorn mince.  You may be surprised that the mince doesn’t need frying either and will cook surprisingly quickly in the sauce.
6)  Serve up quickly,  either by itself or with tortillas and a bit of cheese. Yummy.

Nutrional Comparisons

M’kay this is a nutritional breakdown of my recipe and a comparison with other popular recipes I’ve found.

Half of this vegetarian chilli has 285 kcals,  6g of fat,  and 2.25g of salt.
A serving of GoodFood’s famous chilli con carne has 387 kcals,  17g of fat,  and 2.37g of salt.
A serving of Gordon Ramsay’s chilli con carne (on GoodFood)  has 474kcals,  27.6g of fat,  and 1.15g of salt.  In the picture on the website there’s rice but I don’t know if that’s included in their nutritional informtion.

Ready meal wise I picked two popular products.

A Weight Watcher’s chilli beef with potato crush has 386kcals,  11.2g of fat,  and1.2g of salt.
An Innocent Sweet potato chilli (no mince vegetarian or not) has 324 kcals,  7.4g of fat,  and I couldn’t find the salt content but it had 0.66g of Sodium.
Some of these had rice and other things added to them as side dishes,  but as you see my recipe can be easily built on with for example rice,  sweet potato,  and tortillas to turn it into an echillada.  To lower the fat content even more I’d suggest removing the ratatouile,  doubling the chopped tomatoes, and adding your own courgettes.

I hope this inspires you to avoid frying all the time and to try out Quorn mince,  it’s not even a subsitute,  in my opinion it’s an improvement:  no grizzle and less fat.  Even my staunch carnivorous Dad and Grandfather love the Quorn range,  and these are my strapping Scottish men who like their Aberdeen Angus steaks,  Stornoway black pudding,  and the infamous pig’s trotters (eugh).