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 Post subject: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 6:48 am 
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Vegan Since Before There Were Vegetables
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Location: Wolfville, Nova Scotia
Hi guys. I am making a big pot of freezable chili with some cornbread for my friend who was in an awful car accident with her parents. I never really make chili because I'm not wild about beans/cumin/chili powder, so what recipe do you guys usually make? They are far from vegan so I am aiming to make it seem very accidentally vegan (no TVP, tempeh, etc), but I want it to be hearty and comforting.


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 Post subject: Re: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 7:39 am 
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I cheat and use chile powder (blend of chiles and spices such as cumin). My lazy chili recipe is a can of kidney beans, black beans and pinto beans. You could also make from dried. I add a large can or 2 small cans of diced tomatoes. You can sautee some diced onions (1 small onion) and garlic(2-3 cloves) and maybe diced bell peppers too (1 green or red) for a few minutes then just add the 3 cans of beans (rinsed), the diced tomatoes (with juice), a couple tablespoons of chile powder and a little salt to taste. If you want to use fresh tomatoes, you'd dice them then add them to the onion/garlic mixture after that has sautéed for a few minutes and sautee the tomatoes for a couple minutes. You could also add half a can of pumpkin purée too for a creamier sauce in which case you may need a little bit more salt. You'd cook on a simmer for 20 minutes or so to have everything blend and add a little water if it seems too thick.

A note on the kidney beans in that in the US, lots of them have sugar added. I buy the ones without sugar but if you rinse well, you can probably use the other type of kidney beans.

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 Post subject: Re: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 8:02 am 
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I love the Black and White Chili recipe from Vegan on the Cheap. And the best cornbread is the corn bread cake from Neva Atlas Vegetarian Family cookbook. I'm not sure of the name of it, but no one can ever believe its vegan. My boyfriend says its the best cornbread that he's ever had and he's from the South!

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 Post subject: Re: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 8:08 am 
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I love the sweet potato and brussels sprouts chili from AFR. Yummy and freezes very well.

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 Post subject: Re: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 8:55 am 
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I like the sweet potato lentil chili from ED&BV, with cornbread for Joy of Vegan Baking! Not sure how lentils will go over with the omnis, though.


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 Post subject: Re: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 9:19 am 
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my favorite chili recipe i photo copied out of some PETA cookbook when i worked at Borders.
it's called Moby's Big City Cashew Chili or something to that effect.

it's got white beans and red beans, green and red peppers, onions, a little bit of coffee (i think it calls for a 1/4 cup instant espresso but i just use regular coffee), a Gimme Lean beef log, and all the normal chili spices and ingredients, crushed tomatoes, and cashews.

i love the cashews in it.

sometimes depending on what i have in my refrigerator i will throw in other vegs like zucchini or carrots.

i serve it with tofutti sour cream.

yum yum!

ive never tried to freeze it though.

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 Post subject: Re: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 9:20 am 
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other than the Gimme Lean beef log it's a pretty straight forward chili.

ive had many omni's eat it and like it and not notice the "beef" wasnt real beef.

i think many people are more open to the idea of "tofu crumbles" and such for a beef substitute this days.

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 Post subject: Re: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 9:45 am 
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Sounds like a good time to try the Cook's Illustrated recipe, since it's tested by omnis, not veg*ns. I haven't tried it yet, but it looks really tasty. It is a fair amount of work though!

Cook's Illustrated Vegetarian Chili
1 lb mix of beans, (preferably at least one creamy bean like navy or cannellini, and one more earthy bean like pinto, black, or kidney)
2 dried ancho chiles
2 dried new mexico chiles
1/2 oz dried shittakes, chopped
4 tsp oregano
1/2 cup toasted walnuts
1 28 oz can diced tomatoes, drained, with juices saved
3 tbsp tomato paste
1-2 jalapeños, chopped
6 cloves garlic, minced
3 tbsp soy sauce
1/4 cup oil
2 lbs onions, finely chopped
1 tbsp cumin
7 cups water
2/3 cup medium grind bulgur
1/4 cup chopped cilantro

Bring 4 quarts of water, 3 tbsp salt, and beans to a boil in a large oven-proof pot. Once boiling, turn off heat and let sit for an hour. Drain beans, rinse them off well, and wipe out the pot. Toast chiles in a 300 degree oven until they puff up and are fragrant (takes about 8 minutes; keep the oven on for later!). Let cool, then remove stems and seeds. Grind toasted chiles plus shittakes and oregano in a spice grinder or using a mortar and pestle, and set aside. Finely grind walnuts in a food processor, remove, and set aside. Combine drained tomatoes, tomato paste, jalapeños, garlic, and soy sauce in food processor, and process until finely chopped. Heat oil in the wiped out pot and saute onions with 1 1/4 tsp salt over medium-high heat until onions start to brown. Turn the heat down to medium, and add the ground chile mixture plus cumin and stir until fragrant. Add beans and water and bring to a boil. Place pot in oven, covered, and bake for 45 minutes. Stir in bulgur, ground walnuts, processed tomato mixture, and the saved tomato juice. Cover pot again, and bake until the beans are fully tender (about 2 hours). Stir the chili well, and let stand at room temperature for 20 minutes, then stir in cilantro. (The stirring well as soon as it comes out of the oven is important to make sure the oil doesn't just rise to the top in an oil slick.)


Last edited by helbury on Wed Oct 17, 2012 9:53 am, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 9:48 am 
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I think should make mollyjade's Texas chili, it won the chili cookoff here, is simple, and uses bulgur for the meaty texture so there is nothing weird about it.

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 Post subject: Re: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 10:15 am 
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Omni boyfriend made this for me the other night, then we brought the leftovers to a BBQ and they were super popular with the omnis:

(recipe says you can sub butternut or acorn squash if you don't have pumpkin)

Pumpkin and Black Bean Chili

1 small pie pumpkin
1 tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 can (28 oz) plum tomatoes, chopped
2 cans (19 oz) black beans, drained and rinsed
1 bottle (300 ml) stout (such as Guinness or Dragon)
2 tbsp brown sugar or maple syrup
1 tbsp chili powder
1 tbsp ground cumin
1 tsp each cinnamon and oregano
2 chipotle peppers, finely minced (that’s two *individual* peppers, not cans)
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels

To make the pumpkin easier to cut, pierce with a fork a few times and microwave on high for 1 minute. Set aside to cool.

Once pumpkin is cool enough to handle, cut in half. Scoop out and discard the seeds (or save them to make toasted pepitas), then cut each half into six wedges. Using a sharp paring knife, cut the peel from each wedge, then chop into 1/2″ cubes.

Pour the olive oil into a large heavy-bottomed pot set over medium-high heat. Add onion and saute until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and squash, and continue cooking for another 5 minutes, or until onion is golden. Stir in tomatoes, beans, beer, brown sugar, spices and chipotle peppers.

Bring the chili to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, for 25 minutes or until the pumpkin is tender. Stir in red pepper and corn, and continue simmering for another 5-10 minutes or until corn is bright yellow and peppers are soft.

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 Post subject: Re: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 10:39 am 
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Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 3:30 pm
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Location: Wolfville, Nova Scotia
So many great ideas! Thanks guys! I think I will make DarthCupcake's version since I have a sugar pie pumpkin sitting on my counter and beer in my fridge.


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 Post subject: Re: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 10:42 am 
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DC, Wow that looks amazing. Thanks for sharing. ::high fives::

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 Post subject: Re: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 11:25 am 
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I'm late to this party, but for an old-school just-like-suburban-moms-used-to-make chili, this one is great. (And it always goes over well with the omnivores!)

http://elizaveganpage.blogspot.com/2010/03/roberts-childhood-chili-all-grown-up.html

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 Post subject: Re: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 5:36 pm 
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Oooh, I just tasted DC's chili and it is awesome! And I don't even like chili that much! I subbed a rum-infused hard cider we make at my work for the beer and it really works. I'm now whipping up a batch of the PPK cornbread (the only cornbread I ever make) to go with it. Thanks, everyone!

Due to being forced to eat ground beef as a child frequently, and hating it, I never go for anything resembling that texture in anything, but my boyfriend feels differently and seems to like TVP, so maybe I'll try some of the other suggestions at some point.


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 Post subject: Re: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 6:37 pm 
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Location: France
I just made chili for the first time. I followed the recipe from the Vegan with a vengeance cookbook. There's cocoa in it (!). And oh my god it looks and tastes just perfect!! I used tofu instead of seitan, and red beans instead of pinto beans. Let me know if you want the recipe!

Also, hi everyone, I'm new here, and I'm from France. I used to be vegetarian and turned vegan last year when I was living in Boston, MA. Now I'm back to France, such a vegan-unfriendly country!


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 Post subject: Re: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:36 am 
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I really love the Better-than-Basic Veggie Chili in Yellow Rose Recipes. It's my go-to recipe!


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 Post subject: Re: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 10:28 am 
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I really love the Vegan Diner recipe, mostly because it's super fast and easy. Des's chili looks really good, too.


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 Post subject: Re: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 11:57 am 
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I always try new chilli recipes, but always go back to this one because it is the kind that my partner loves the most. (but I am totally trying DC's next time!!! that sounds amazeballs). Of course you can change up the veggies and beans, but the spices and the sauce stay pretty much the same. It is a really tomato saucy type of chilli...not very typical, but we like it a lot. I am bored, so I attempted to write it up.

*optional veggies, use whatever variation you want

1 medium onion chopped
1-2 carrots chopped (kind of big pieces)
3-4 cloves garlic minced/pressed

2-3 tsp dried basil
1 tsp mexican oregano
1 TBSP cumin
1 TSP chili powder
1-2 chilies in adobo sauce (add more adobo sauce if you like it hot..I do)
1 tsp salt

1 red/yellow/orange bell pepper chopped*
1 small zuchinni chopped*
4 oz crimini mushrooms chopped*

1-2 cans or 1.5-3 cups beans (black, pinto, red kidney beans, any combo)
1 14 oz can diced tomatoes
1 28 oz can tomato sauce*
*you may need more. I use an additonal 14 oz can of sauce if I have a lot of beans and vegetables
1 cup frozen corn
Optional - nutritional yeast and cilantro


Sautee the onion and carrots in vegetable or canola oil in a large pot about 5 minutes or until onions are tranclucent. Add minced garlic and sautee for 1 more minute

Add chopped veggies and sautee for about 5 minutes. You can just chop them and drop them in the pan.

Add spices and chillis and stir for about a minute. Add beans, tomatoes, sauce, and extra sauce or veggie broth (you might need to add more if you went heavy on the beans and vegetables)

Simmer over low heat for 20 minutes. Add cup of corn (frozen ok) and nutritional yeast (I use at least a TBSP). Turn off heat, let sit for about 10 minutes. Add cilantro right before serving.


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 Post subject: Re: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 2:01 pm 
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LazySmurf wrote:
I think should make mollyjade's Texas chili, it won the chili cookoff here, is simple, and uses bulgur for the meaty texture so there is nothing weird about it.


This is a great chili recipe! I make it with half the bulgur and add beans, because I'm not a real Texan (never mind that I have lived here for 30+ years).

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 Post subject: Re: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 9:03 pm 
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Yeesh it's been way too long since I've been on here - but I'm loving the classic black bean & veggie chili from AFR lately!


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 Post subject: Re: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Fri Oct 19, 2012 12:39 am 
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this is a really important thread because I am in need of a good chili recipe.

Also, Vijita, I'm so sorry to hear about your friend. I'm sure they'll really appreciate having a home cooked meal. xo

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 Post subject: Re: Best Chili Recipe?
PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 7:44 pm 
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My absolute favourite (and omni friendly), chilli is from Dreena Burton's Eat, Drink and Be Vegan. Sweet potato and lentil chilli. So yummy and hearty.


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