Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Valley Dish - Sloppy Chipotle Joses

Yesterday was a fun and fabulous day. I got to cook with Tram Mai, the awesome host of Valley Dish here in Phoenix. She is so fun and full of energy. She is passionate about food and is very interested in finding delicious healthy things to eat. A self-proclaimed carnivore, she was very excited to try some tasty vegan fare. I was thrilled to be able to bring some compassionate cooking to the studio kitchen. I do hope that I am able to dispel some of the misconceptions about vegan cooking being bland and boring.

When trying to come up with dishes for the show, I have a fun time trying to find vegan dishes that will appeal to all types of viewers and diners...that can also be prepped in 10 minutes or so. This flavorful Southwestern twist on a classic American favorite fit the bill for this episode. The actual cooking time is longer than 10 minutes of course, but prep is a snap. I've served this dish to kids, adults, carnivores, you name it, with great success. I love it because it is easy, low fat, healthy and really great for feeding a crowd. It doubles easily and freezes like a dream. So it is excellent for busy people. Click here to view the video of Tram and I dishing 'em up (courtesy of Valley Dish).

Sloppy Chipotle Joses

Makes 8 sandwiches

1 ½ cup brown lentils
5 cups water
2 ½ teaspoons Better than Bouillon vegetarian no beef flavor base
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large fresh pasilla/poblano chile, medium dice (approx ¾ cup)
1 medium yellow onion, diced small (approx 1 cup)
3 large cloves of garlic, minced (or 3-4 teaspoons pre-minced)
1 teaspoon ancho chili powder
½ teaspoon smoked paprika
2 teaspoons Mexican oregano
½ teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon prepared mustard
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
½ cup ketchup
8 oz. tomato sauce
2 chipotle peppers (in adobo sauce), minced (leave seeds in if you like a bit more heat)

In a two-quart saucepan combine the lentils, water and bouillon. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer lentils for about 20-30 minutes until cooked through. There should be a very small amount of liquid left (Lentils can be made a day or two ahead of time and refrigerated).

While the lentils are cooking, heat olive oil in a 4 quart saucepan over medium heat. Add pasilla chiles, yellow onion and garlic. Sauté until just soft, about 8 minutes. Add ancho chile powder, smoked paprika, Mexican oregano and salt. Saute for another minute or so until they become fragrant. If lentils are not quite, done turn heat on the vegetable mixture to the lowest setting and simmer. Add lentils and remaining ingredients to the pan. Simmer over low heat for 10-15 minutes. You can serve immediately, but I recommend waiting 15 minutes or so to let the flavors really come out. This one is even better the next day for a quick lunch.

Serve on soft burger buns with a side of slaw.


If you like a lot of heat, you can add an extra chipotle chile and maybe even a hit of cayenne pepper.

Want it more sloppy? Feel free to add another 8 oz. can of tomato sauce.

Just for the fun of it, here is the nutritional information courtesy of


  1. oh this looks and sounds wonderful!

  2. Thanks Rikki! It is super easy too!

  3. This is AWESOME! I put mine on a taco shell for the 'no gluten' alternative, and it was heaven. Super easy to make and very, very affordable too.