Butternut chilli

Butternut chilli

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(31 ratings)

Prep: 30 mins Cook: 1 hr


Serves 4
This Mexican stew is hearty enough to satisfy both vegetarians and meat eaters, with butternut squash, black beans and juicy tomatoes

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable
  • Vegetarian

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal370
  • fat16g
  • saturates6g
  • carbs33g
  • sugars16g
  • fibre11g
  • protein10g
  • salt1.7g
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  • 600g medium vine tomatoes, or 400g can chopped or cherry tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
    olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl

    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

  • 2 onions, finely chopped



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 red bird's-eye chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp oregano



    Closely related to marjoram, of which it is the wild equivalent, oregano has a coarser, more…

  • 1 bay leaf
  • 600g butternut squash, peeled and cut into cubes
  • 12 pitted green olives, roughly chopped
  • 150ml red wine
  • ½ vegetable stock cube
  • 200g jar piquillo pimiento peppers, or 2 roasted Romano peppers, roughly chopped
  • 400g can black beans or red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • small bunch chives, snipped
  • 175ml soured cream


  1. If using fresh tomatoes, pour boiling water over them in a bowl, count to 30, then lift out, peel and chop.

  2. Heat the oil in a heavy-based frying pan with a lid and add the onions and garlic. Soften gently, stirring occasionally. Stir the chilli, cayenne, oregano and bay leaf into the onions. Stir-fry for 1 min, then stir in the squash, olives and wine. Simmer for a couple of mins, stirring, then add the tomatoes and 200ml water. Crumble in the stock cube and stir. Bring to a simmer, cover and cook for 30 mins, stirring occasionally.

  3. Add the peppers to the pan and check the seasoning. Add extra water if it’s looking dry. Cover and cook for a further 25-30 mins until the squash is tender. Can be frozen at this stage for up to 1 month – defrost overnight in the fridge before continuing with the recipe.

  4. Add the beans to the pan and reheat. Serve with chives and soured cream on the side.

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Comments, questions and tips

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17th Aug, 2017
Loved this though was a bit too spicy. Used roasted normal peppers as couldn't find the jar ones
16th Aug, 2017
I was on holiday and our family decided to recreate come dine with me, where we paired up and made different meals each night so the effort was shared. We, as vegetarians, made this. It was a struggle to make it lets say, and turned out to take nearly 3 hours for us, but it was so rewarding. Everyone but 1 person liked it (this one person only didnt eat all of it because of the spices). Highly reccomend! came out more as a stew though.
4th Jul, 2017
Initially i was sceptical due to the spice choice and the inclusion of olives (which i'm not usually a fan of) however very impressed with how it turned out. Similar to a comment below, the olives really make it. Added half a teaspoon extra of the oregano and cayenne pepper for personal preference. Very good recipe would do again.
SawyerSauce's picture
26th Jun, 2017
I used a large sweet potato as there were no butternut squash in the shops... Worked fine! I also added in a handful of red lentils because I found the recipe quite watery... I don't think it needs any extra water but perhaps it's because of the differences I made. I served with long grain rice, and added the kidney beans in the last few mins cooking with the rice instead, along with homemade guacamole and creme fraiche :)
6th Mar, 2017
We loved this dish. Served it with taco shells & we all ate & ate until we felt sick ... then had a bit more! I used black beans & a can of cherry toms. I chopped the squash to sugar cube size. Definitely double the olives. Would be lovely with rice for a main or pitta pockets for a lunch.
9th Feb, 2017
Loved it. Will definitely make this again.I was a bit unsure seeing olives in the ingredients but everyone loved it, except my niece who was a little bit sick. Was the right level of spice for my little ones and we had a nice slice of ham on top.
16th Jan, 2017
I'll be making this again this week due to requests, which is the seal of recommendation that any recipe wants. As fans of olives, we agree with the previous comment and would recommend increasing the amount as 12 olives don't really go far. Personal preference of course.
AmeliaSinclair's picture
14th Jan, 2017
So delicious. The green olives were an interesting touch but really made the recipe in my opinion. Even nicer when topped it with halloumi!
8th Nov, 2016
Great recipe, it's been one of my staples for a while now. I usually add a scotch bonnet pepper for an extra kick and blend ~2cups of the mixture right at the end to give it a smoother texture, making it better for tortillas/wraps.
9th Sep, 2016
My husband I found this quite tasty and a nice alternative from a meaty chilli. However it was far to spicy for our toddler! (even with a lot of creme fraiche on his bowl). Not absolutely sure about the olives but a bit different.


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