Peppered Polenta Topping
  1. In a medium saucepan, bring the broth to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium and whisk in the polenta. Continue to whisk constantly until the mixture begins to thicken, about 3 minutes. Add the peppers, olive oil, cilantro, salt, and pepper to taste. Continue to cook, stirring constantly, until the polenta is very thick, about 3 minutes more.
  2. Baked Polenta Pot Pie:
  3. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly spray a 13 x 9-inch baking dish with cooking spray and ladle in the chili about half way up the side of the dish.
  4. Complete the steps above for the polenta and gently scoop on top of the chili. Use a spatula to work the polenta to the edges of the baking dish. Place the baking dish on a sheet pan, to catch any drips or spills, and place in the oven for 15-20 minutes until the chili is bubbling around the edges and the polenta is golden brown. *I like to turn my broiler on the last 3-4 minutes to get a really crisp topping.
  5. Grilled Polenta pot pie:
  6. Spray a 9 x 9-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Complete the steps above for the polenta then pour into the prepared baking dish, smooth over the top with a rubber spatula; the polenta should be about ¾-inch thick. Allow the polenta to rest for 15-20 minutes so that it solidifies.
  7. While the polenta rests determine what size polenta "tops" you will need for the chili pot pie. I use individual cast iron bowls, so I simply used a round cutter that was slightly smaller than the mouth of our bowls. Alternatively, you can cut the polenta into squares with a knife that will sit neatly on top of your chili.
  8. Preheat a grill pan until very hot, cut the polenta into desired shapes and sizes, then lightly brush each side of the polenta with olive oil. Place the polenta onto the preheated pan and grill for about 3 minutes per side, or until nice deep grill marks have formed.
  9. Place the grilled polenta cakes on top of piping hot chili and serve immediately.
Serving Suggestions:
For a vegan option, top polenta pot pies with roasted poblano cashew cream, fresh chopped cilantro, and homemade pickled peppers as pictured.
If you eat dairy this is also delicious topped with pepper jack cheese and a dollop of sour cream, fresh chopped cilantro, and homemade pickled peppers.
Recipe by Potluck at Oh My Veggies at