Bread bowls are so last year. Step up your chili game with these baked plantain cups. This recipe piles a hearty yuca and black bean chili into a crispy, homemade plantain cup for the bet chili dish this side of the border.

Yuca and Black Bean Chili Plantain Cups [Vegan, Gluten-Free]

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For the Plantain Cups:

  • 2 green plantains
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Salt, to taste

For the Black Bean and Yuca Chili:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons recaíto (see notes)
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 1/4 green pepper, chopped
  • 2 cups yuca, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 15-ounce can black beans, drained
  • 1 can tomatoes, diced
  • 1 teaspoon adobo seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups vegetable broth


To Make the Chili:

  1. In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat.
  2. Add your recaíto and let it cook for 2 minutes or until fragrant.
  3. Add the remaining ingredients and bring the mixture to a boil.
  4. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer the chili uncovered. Stir the pot occasionally until yucca is tender and the chili has thickened. This should take about 40 minutes.
  5. Set aside.

To Make the Plantain Cups:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Slice each plantain into 2-inch pieces. You should get about three pieces for each plantain.
  3. Brush some olive oil on all of the pieces.
  4. Place the pieces on a perforated baking sheet. If you do not have a perforated baking sheet you can use a regular baking sheet but put a cooling rack in the sheet so that the heat can go underneath the plantains and cook them on both sides.
  5. Bake them for 20 minutes and remove them from the oven.
  6. Using a stuffed plantain press, take a plantain and put it in the press and smash the plantain so that it forms into the shape of a cup. Repeat this until all of the plantains are in cup shapes. If you do not have a stuffed plantain press you can put the plantains in between two metal muffin pans and press them together to form the cups.
  7. Brush on some more olive oil on all of the plantain cups on both sides.
  8. Return the plantains to the perforated baking sheet and put them back in the oven and bake for an additional 15 minutes.
  9. Remove them from the oven and immediately sprinkle some salt on all of the plantain cups.
  10. Fill each plantain cup with chili and serve them hot.


Recaíto is a cooking base used in many Puerto Rican recipes. You can make your own recaíto at home by following the instructions below: 2-3 medium onions, chopped 3 green bell peppers, chopped 6 large sweet green or red chili peppers, seeds removed 8 garlic cloves or to taste, minced 12 culantro (cilantro) leaves (or substitute with more cilantro), minced 2 bunches of cilantro, minced Add everything to a food processor and pulse until combined. Store in an airtight container.


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