Hormone Balancing Black Bean and Mushroom Chilli

Let’s take a break from all the healthy snack recipes! Here is the perfect warming main dish to boost your mood and its suitable for everyone including vegans, celiacs and those with lactose intolerance. Beans are a sure source of essential amino acid, tryptophan which is needed for general growth and development, producing niacin, and creating a neurotransmitter called serotonin in the body. Serotonin is thought to produce healthy sleep and a stable mood and when combined with carbohydrate. To increase serotonin with foods, the best strategy involves eating proper carbohydrates, as well as foods containing the amino acid tryptophan. Therefore by serving this dish with some super fibrous brown rice you have a winning happy hormone and sleep promoting dish!

Serves: 4


2 tbsp olive oil
2 white onions, finely diced4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
250g chestnut mushrooms, thinly sliced
50g button mushrooms, thinly sliced
2 tsp smoked paprika
2 tsp chilli flakes (to taste)
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 carrot, grated
2 x 400g tins black beans, drained and rinsed
1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
200ml vegetable stock
juice of 1 lime
handful of coriander
salt and black pepper


In a large pan or frying pan with a lid, warm the olive oil over a medium heat. Add the onions with a pinch of salt and sauté until softened, about 3–4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for a further minute before adding the mushrooms. Increase the heat a little and cook the mushrooms for 5–10 minutes until they have browned.

Now add all the spices, allowing them to toast and coat all the ingredients. Then add the grated carrot, beans, tomatoes and the stock. Bring to the boil then reduce to a simmer, cover and cook over a low heat for 30–60 minutes, stirring from time to time (a longer cooking time is best for a richer flavour). Remove the lid for the last 5 minutes of cooking to allow some of the excess liquid to evaporate and for the chilli to thicken. Add the lime juice and season to taste. Serve with brown rice and top with sliced chillies, diced avocado and lime wedges. Roughly tear over the coriander.

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