Tex-Mex Sorghum Chili – Sharon Palmer, The Plant Powered Dietitian

One way to boost your disease protection is to infuse your diet with more healthy, wholesome whole grains, such as oats, wheat, quinoa, buckwheat, amaranth, brown rice, wild rice, teff, millet—and sorghum.

What’s sorghum? This ancient, nutrient-rich whole grain also happens to be gluten-free. Sorghum originated in Africa, and from there it traveled on the Silk Road to Asia and India, eventually making its way to the United States on slave ships. While it was primarily used for animal feed, there is a growing appreciation that people can gain benefits by enjoying this delicious whole grain, too!

Sorghum is a whole grain nutrition powerhouse!

Sorghum is a nutritional powerhouse. Unlike other grains, it has no inedible hull, which allows you to eat the entire grain and reap the benefits. Just ½ cup of cooked sorghum packs 6 grams of fiber and 4 grams of protein. Sorghum is also rich in iron (15% DV per serving) and phosphorus (13% DV), which help foster red blood cell development and bone health. Black sorghum is also packed with anthocyanin, an antioxidant that is not found in many other grains.

Sorghum is also a sustainable grain, as it thrives in drought-like conditions, therefore requiring very little water or maintenance. It is naturally resistant to many plant diseases as well. Though it comes in many varieties, white, brown and bronze colored sorghum grains are the most common.

It’s a good idea to include more whole grains, like sorghum, in your day to fill your diet with fiber, which is linked with reducing the risk of colorectal cancer. So, get started with this easy, healthy completely plant-based, gluten-free recipe for Tex Mex Sorghum Chili.

Rely on easy, whole ingredients to make this delicious chili.

Check out the video for this delicious, plant-based recipe here.


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This chili relies upon the flavorful combination of hearty sorghum, which grows readily in Texas, as well as black beans, corn, peppers, onions, celery, and seasonings. Serve it with tortilla chips, avocado, tomatoes, and cilantro to bring out even more delicious flavors.

  • 2 cups dried black beans
  • 1 ½ cups dried whole grain sorghum
  • 4 cups water
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 3 stalks celery, diced
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 cup yellow corn, frozen or canned, drained
  • 1 14.5-ounce can fire-roasted, crushed tomatoes with juice
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3 tablespoons Mexican seasoning blend*
  • Salt to taste (optional)
  • Garnish (as desired): tortilla chips, fresh avocado slices, green onion slices, chopped fresh cilantro, chopped fresh tomatoes

  1. Place beans in a large pot, cover with water, and soak overnight.
  2. The next day, discard the water, and add 4 cups fresh water and 4 cups vegetable broth. Add dried sorghum, stir well, cover and simmer over medium-low for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Add celery, onion, garlic, pepper, corn, tomatoes, tomato paste, and Mexican seasoning blend*. Stir well to combine, cover, and simmer for an additional 45 minutes, stirring occasionally, until beans, sorghum, and vegetables are tender. May need to add additional water lost to evaporation. Should make a thick stew-like texture.
  4. Serve in bowls and garnish as desired with tortilla chips, fresh avocado slices, green onion slices, chopped fresh cilantro, and chopped fresh tomatoes.


*May use prepared Mexican seasoning blend, or make your own with chili powder, cumin, paprika, oregano, cilantro, and cayenne pepper.

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Category: Soup
  • Cuisine: American


  • Serving Size: 1 serving
  • Calories: 272
  • Sugar: 5 g
  • Sodium: 245 mg
  • Fat: 2 g
  • Saturated Fat: 0 g
  • Carbohydrates: 56 g
  • Fiber: 9 g
  • Protein: 13 g

Keywords: vegan chili, healthy chili, vegan chili recipe

Recipe by Sharon Palmer, MSFS, RDN, The Plant-Powered Dietitian for AICR.

Sponsored by United Sorghum Checkoff Program.

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