Rustic Veggie Chili Recipe | Dairy Farmers of Canada 2018 Milk Calendar

This post is sponsored by Dairy Farmers of Canada.

I haven’t had good luck making chili. I love the flavours but for some reason whatever recipe I try turns out like a sloppy soupy mess — I don’t fail at many things in the kitchen, but chili is one of them.

Enter the 2018 Milk Calendar.

Hello, I’m Miss March

When I was a kid, the milk calendar was a staple in our family’s kitchen — haphazardly affixed to the fridge with masking tape and marked up with birthdays and dentist appointments throughout the year. This year marks the 41st edition of the Milk Calendar from the Dairy Farmers of Canada and it’s all about celebrating seasonal twists on family meals.

Like always, the 2018 Milk Calendar is full of delicious, healthy recipes that make meal planning easier than ever — it’s all right there in the calendar, people! There are 19 recipes, with lots of additional tips on how to jazz up these new favourites. It’s been available in select markets as of November 16, and is making its way into the homes of close to two million people across Ontario and Atlantic Canada.

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We’ve been asked to feature March’s recipe here on The Food Girl in Town, which features duh, duh, duh, chili. Luckily the recipe for Rustic Veggie Chili is a winner with the addition of milk, cheese, yogurt and a whole lot of Canadian love. Celebrating local and sustainable ingredients found across Canada paired with 100% Canadian Dairy products, the 2018 Milk Calendar showcases healthy recipes that are also super easy to prepare. Dairy Farmers enlisted the help of food writer and recipe developer Heather Trim to create the recipes and she nailed it every month of the year.

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Rustic Veggie Chili

There’s lots of peeling and chopping involved with this recipe so there’s small jobs for the whole family to participate in — but if you’re solo, you can knock out prep in minutes. Making meals together is something I loved doing as a kid, and the 2018 Milk Calendar helps develop healthy eating habits by helping make cooking great food easy and accessible to everyone around the table.

There’s no stock or water in the recipe for Rustic Veggie Chili, so it’s chunky and not of the sloppy soupy variety which I have come to know throughout my chili failings. Other chilis can be more soup than stoup (a term my husband thought I made up), but the consistency of this chili is near perfect because of the milk and flour mixture added after you’ve let the delicious veggies bathe in the spice mixture.

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Milk subtly reinvents dishes like chili. By adding the milk, you get a creaminess and richness without taking away from the flavours of the spice blend. This technique reminds me of making a quality Bolognese sauce, which also calls for milk, what a great trick!

March’s Rustic Veggie Chili is great for a weeknight dinner or a Saturday lunch with family gathered around the table. Topped with thick Greek yogurt, shredded cheddar cheese or hunks of avocado, it’s fun to let everyone pick their own dressings. I won’t lie, I tried all three on one of the bowls I devoured over a period of three days and it rocked my world.

To find out how to get your 2018 Milk Calendar and snag more recipes like this Rustic Veggie Chili, along with video and extra cooking tips, visit

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Rustic Veggie Chili

Let’s face it, chili is all about the seasonings, and this one is really flavourful. Serve with chopped avocado, shredded Cheddar and plain yogurt or sour cream.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Canadian, Comfort Food
Keyword Chili, Recipe
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 8 people
Author Dairy Farmers of Canada


  • 1 small zucchini
  • ½ butternut squash
  • 1 each red and yellow pepper, cored and seeded
  • 1 tbsp 15 mL butter
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper seeded and finely chopped
  • 3 tbsp 45 mL chili powder
  • 1 tbsp 15 mL dried oregano leaves
  • 1 tsp 5 mL cumin
  • ½ tsp 2 mL salt
  • ¼ tsp 1 mL cayenne
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 28 oz/796 mL cans diced tomatoes
  • 2 19 oz/540 mL cans mixed beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 tbsp 30 mL all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup 250 mL milk
  • 1 cup 250 mL frozen corn
  • ½ cup 125 mL chopped fresh coriander


  1. Cut zucchini into pieces measuring ½ to 1 inch (1 to 2.5 cm). Slice butternut squash and peppers into pieces measuring about the same size as zucchini. In a large saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add onion, garlic and jalapeno. Cook for 3 min until onion begins to soften. Stir in seasonings and bay leaves. Stir in squash, zucchini and peppers. Add tomatoes and beans; stir. Cover; bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat; simmer, stirring occasionally for 20 min.
  2. Whisk flour into milk. Gradually stir into chili. Simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally for 10 more min or until your desired thickness. Discard bay leaves. Stir in corn and coriander.


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