Appetizer · Side Dish

Paleo Chili Cups

Paleo Chili Cups

With the Super Bowl around the corner these Paleo Chili Cup recipe come at a great time, a hearty hors-d’oeuvre without the mess of a bowl of chili, and with a far better presentation.

There are so many misconceptions about the Paleo or Primal lifestyle, one of them being that we eat primarily meat. I have to say that since going primal, my intake of meat has not increased, but my vegetable consumption more than doubled. A couple of years ago, I would have made this with a can of gas-inducing, tummy-bloating beans and wheat flour, which I have now replaced with fresh  vegetables and a much more nutritious plantain cup.

When choosing the plantains make sure their peel is green, as when they start to get yellow they become sweet and soft. You can also serve the chili in raw bell pepper “cups” instead.

Ingredients for the chili:

2 tbsp of lard, coconut oil, or tallow
2 medium onions, chopped
3 slices of bacon, chopped (optional)
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound of ground meat, I used organic ground chicken
1 teaspoon ground coriander
2-3 teaspoons ground cumin
1 tsp of smoked paprika
3 cups of crushed tomatoes or plain roasted tomatoes, if using my homemade recipe, avoid the spices
3 cups of chopped vegetables. (I used carrots and celery)
1 tbsp of lime juice
2-3 tsp of chili powder
1 large jalapeño pepper, seeded, finely chopped (optional)
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Cilantro and green onions to garnish

Ingredients for the Cups:

6 green plantains
4-5 eggs
6-8 tbsp of lard, coconut oil of preferred cooking fat
1 tsp of cumin
1 tsp of garlic powder
Salt to taste 


  •  In a medium saucepan sauté the onions, bacon and garlic in the cooking fat, until the onions become transparent. (If using bacon you may need less oil).
  • Add the meat and cook until it is medium-well done, breaking up the big chunks of meat.
  • Add the tomato, vegetables, lemon, jalapeño, and spices and continue to cook over medium/low heat until the vegetables are tender.

For the cups:

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  •  Peel and slice the plantains, the easiest way to peel a plantain is to cut off the ends off, cut the plantain in half, cut a slit lengthwise on the peel and separate the peel from the plantain.
  • Place the plantain slices in a cookie sheet and bake for 20 minutes or until the plantains are soft.
  • Allow the plantains to cool.
  • Place all ingredients in a food processor and run until a dough is formed.
  • Line the inside of a greased muffin tin with a 1/3-inch layer of this dough.Grain-Free Chili Cups
  • Bake for an additional 15-20 minutes or until the plantain cup is set and crispy.
  •   Fill the cups with chili and garnish with green onions and cilantro.
  • Serve immediately.


For other Super Bowl recipe ideas try my bacon wrapped dates or my

7 thoughts on “Paleo Chili Cups

  1. I am going to try these with sweet potatoes as the cups base this weekend (allergic to plantains). So excited! Thank you.


  2. So, these were an item featured in my Once A Month Meals menu. I’m not sure how appropriate it was since they were pretty time consuming, but MAN, am I glad I made them!!! The chili recipe had about triple the veggies…not sure why, but it turned out REALLY good. I also used very ripe plantains which I highly recommend. It gives them the perfect hint of sweetness and compliments the chili really well. They DO freeze well!! You want to be careful how you freeze them so that you don’t end up breaking them into pieces when they defrost, but you CAN freeze them (and the chili in separate quart sized bags) without losing any flavor or messing up the consistency. They reheat very easily in the microwave. I’m crafting a blog post on these…they’re fantastic!


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