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Vegetarian Chili August 17, 2010

Posted by nrhatch in Food & Drink, Vegetarian Recipes.

tomatoes98x127I have hesitated to post my “recipe” for Vegetarian Chili because it’s more a general list of ingredients than an actual blueprint for making Chili.

My recommendation:  If you have a recipe for Chili con Carne (with meat) that you and your family love, use that as the starting point:

* Omit the meat, and replace each pound of meat with a 15-oz. can of beans (black beans, pinto beans, and kidney beans are all excellent in chili).

* Another option, especially during the transition phase to a more meat*less diet, replace the meat with Boca Crumbles (or other TVP product).  TVP stands for Textured Vegetable Protein.  It’s generally made from soy beans and looks and acts like meat (but it’s better behaved ~ less fat, calories, and cholesterol than meat, and it doesn’t clog your arteries).

IMGP4091* A third option, replace the meat with onion, green or red pepper, jalapeno, corn, celery, or carrots.

Adding extra veggies adds chunkiness to your chili, without making you chunky in the process.

Mix and match any of these suggestions and . . . Voila!  Vegetarian Chili!

If you don’t have a tried and true recipe for Chili to use as a starting point, here are the general steps I follow.

Vegetarian Chili

1-2 chopped onions
1 chopped red or green pepper
2 ribs of celery, chopped
2-3 carrots, peeled and diced (or thinly sliced)
10-12 oz. frozen corn kernels
28-oz. crushed tomatoes (or 16 oz. tomato sauce and 12 oz. tomato paste)
2-3   15-oz. cans of beans (black, pinto, or kidney beans all work well)
1/2 c. water

Season with Chili Powder (1 Tbsp.), Cumin (2 tsp.), Cayenne Powder (1/4 tsp.), Crushed Red Pepper Flakes (1/2 tsp.), and Tabasco ( a few shakes).  After cooking a few hours, taste the sauce and adjust seasonings to “kick it up a notch,” especially if you like your chili hot and spicy.

Another option:  use a packet (or two) of pre-mixed Chili Seasoning to season your chili ~ usually found near the gravy mixes.

I generally cook the chili in a slow cooker for 4-6 hours (low and slow).  But you can also make it on the stove.  If doing it stove top, sauté all the veggies until the onions are limp before adding the beans, tomatoes, and seasoning.   After adding the beans and tomatoes, turn to low and simmer for 1-2 hours.

Serve over cooked brown rice or noodles.  Top with cheese, sour cream, or chopped jalapenos.

Delicious with fresh baked bread or cornbread.


1. Barbara Gunn - August 17, 2010

Sounds delicious! I’m going to have to try this one.

nrhatch - August 17, 2010

Yay! Glad it sounds yummy to you.

Naomi asked for the recipe, and this is as close as I can get based on my sketchy notes.

2. Chrissie - August 17, 2010

Oh Wow – great inspiration. I LOVE chillies, and chilli. I usually use veggie mince, which I think is tastier than most TVP. ( Not sure if you have this brand – I live in the UK). But wondered how to do it with beans and veg alone.
Thank You. I think I will try this and love the slow cooker idea. Maybe the kids would love it if they have been smelling it all day, and its soft ( the texture means so much to my kids)- I will add more chilli to mine though.
I visited friends the other week, who were cooking amazing chilli and curries, but all meat, so I just ate the whole chilli peppers! Maybe showing off a little, but they lush!

nrhatch - August 17, 2010

I’ve had lots of positive reaction to this recipe (although it’s probably never been exactly the same dish twice). It’s fun to play around with and . . . it smells awesome.

It’s been simmering away all day. Our guests will be here in about 30 minutes and then we can finally enjoy!

3. Chrissie - August 17, 2010

Oh, please can I pop on a plane and come for dinner? xx Yummy! Enjoy! I love chilli piled over a jacket potato. That’s my sort of cooking, go with the flow, and what’s in the cupboards xx

nrhatch - August 17, 2010

We’re having roasted potatoes and red peppers on the side . . . delicious with chili!

We have plenty! Come hungry! : )

4. Chrissie - August 17, 2010

Oh Thank You!! I’l be there in 20! MMmm sounds GORGEOUS!! I am definitely hungry!

nrhatch - August 17, 2010

You’re welcome. It tasted awesome!

5. cindy - August 18, 2010

Sure reads as delish!

nrhatch - August 18, 2010

Very yummy. Our nieces loved it. So did we. : )

6. Agatha82 - August 18, 2010

I love chilli, whether vegetarian or not, so I’ll give it a try…yummy

nrhatch - August 18, 2010


7. Robert Lawrence - August 18, 2010

I have found through my travels that Chile is the most tenacious food to insure that one actually has true and good friends. Simply eat a little more than your share and those who are still hanging out with you after about an hour are indeed you truest of friends.

nrhatch - August 18, 2010

That’s funny!

One of the benefit of a vegetarian diet ~ better smelling toots. : )

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[…] on C~H~E~E~S~E), we’ve put our Slow Cooker to good use this week ~ making Split Pea Soup, Vegetarian Chili, Vegetable Soup with Farro, and . . […]

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