C-CAP, the nonprofit organization that runs the annual contest, kicked off the contest last Fall by introducing teen chefs from around the country to the Meatless Monday public health campaign that encourages everyone to start each week with a healthy, meat-free meal. This year’s recipe contest theme was vegetarian chili. The students were asked to explore using new ingredients like fruits, vegetables, grains, and legumes in their chili recipes.
The winners beat out thousands of their C-CAP high school senior peers from across the country with their stand-out recipes.
1st Place winner, Lucila Flores’ Kung Pao Chili earned her a $5000 scholarship
“When I began to work on the Meatless Monday project, I wanted to convert a traditional meat dish into a meatless dish. That way, everyone can enjoy the flavor. Cooking for other people is about sharing experiences and sharing memories. I am excited to continue to learn about new techniques and flavors. I will use what I learn to be creative in my work. Cooking fine foods for other people will be how I express myself and share myself with people.” —Lucila Flores
2nd Place winner, Victoria Kitsos’ Smoked Spicy Seitan Chili received a $3000 scholarship
“I chose seitan because I wanted my classmates to try something new and healthy that they would not normally come across but still had a heartiness to it. Once they tasted it, they didn’t believe it was meatless.” —Victoria Kitsos
3rd Place winner, Briana Small’s Roasted Sweet Potato Quinoa Chilireceived a $2000 scholarship
“C-CAP is a helping hand into my future, teaching me hard work and determination to achieve my dreams, and my job inspires me to expand my thought process on food by using new ingredients in various ways.” —Briana Small
The recipe submissions were judged on originality, flavor, healthfulness, ease of preparation, and writing ability.
This is Meatless Monday’s second year partnering with C-CAP through its support of the annual Meatless Monday Recipe Contest. “Our goal is to motivate aspiring chefs to create tasty and healthy meatless meals. We can’t wait for America to taste the winning C-CAP students’ imaginative meatless renditions of the traditional chili,” says Sid Lerner, founder of the Meatless Monday movement.
Get full press coverage of the contest here.