Vegan Tempeh Chili with Beans

Close-up photo of tempeh chili smothered a piece of cornbread in a grey bowl.

Close-up photo of tempeh chili smothered a piece of cornbread in a grey bowl.

It might be my midwestern upbringing, but I’m a chili fan. It’s warming and filling- you can’t ask for much more. This chili is using one of my favorite tempeh products, and it comes together in about 30 minutes. Serve with cornbread (or peanut butter sandwiches if you’re like my husband).

The Tempeh

When my husband decided to join me in eating mostly vegetarian, I knew I had to bulk up the protein we were eating on a day to day basis. I’m still skeptical about many of the ‘faux’ meat products on the market, so I tend to stick to tofu and tempeh.

For this chili, I went with using this smoky tempeh. I like the flavor it brings to the dish. However, you could easily use any tempeh. I’d recommend upping the smoked paprika another ½ teaspoon or adding a bit of smoked salt.

Vegetable Add

While non-traditional, I like to add vegetables and greens to my chili. Try kale, chard, or collards for greens or add sweet potatoes, butternut squash, or even root vegetables into the mix. I like to sautee the vegetables with my onions before I add everything else.

Meld two recipes

While I love this recipe, occasionally I will meld my favorite chili recipe with this tempeh recipe. It’s pretty simple: just add about ¼ cup of bulgur to the recipe and up the water by 3/4 cup or so. The bulgur helps add a bit more of the ‘meaty’ texture.

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Close-up photo of tempeh chili smothered a piece of cornbread in a grey bowl.

Vegan Tempeh Chili with Beans


Description

A hearty and filling vegan chili that’s made with the help of smoky tempeh and your favorite beans. Ready in about 30 minutes!


Scale

Ingredients

Chili

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 large yellow onion, minced

½ teaspoon sea salt

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 tablespoon chili powder

2 teaspoons oregano

2 teaspoons cumin

1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika

6 ounces tempeh (preferably the smokey tempeh strips), finely chopped

1 28- ounce can crushed tomatoes

1 to 2 cups vegetable broth

1 ½ cups cooked pinto or kidney beans (see note)

Toppings

Pepitas, for topping

Scallions, for topping

Cilantro, for topping


Instructions

  • Heat a large pot over medium heat. Add the olive oil followed by the minced onion and ½ teaspoon salt. Cook for 10-12 minutes, until the onion is fragrant and softened. Stir in the garlic and cook for another minute. 
  • After the onions are tender, stir in the spices and cook for yet another minute. Once the spices are fragrant, add in the tempeh. I like the tempeh to be about the same size as ground beef would be. Cook until the tempeh is cooked through, a couple of minutes (depending on the size of the tempeh)
  • Next, add in the crushed tomatoes and 1 cup vegetable broth. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook for about 10 minutes; just giving time for all the flavors to come together. 
  • Finally, stir in the beans and cook until hot. Taste and adjust the seasoning as desired. Serve with cornbread and your favorite toppings.

Notes

Notes

I like to amp the beans up in this recipe sometimes. Feel free to double and mix up the beans. I love a combination of kidney and pinto (but black beans would work well too.)

Keywords: tempeh chili, vegan chili

Vegan chili in a grey bowl with a small grey bowl filled with cilantro and pumpkin seeds on a white background.

Vegan chili in a grey bowl with a small grey bowl filled with cilantro and pumpkin seeds on a white background.

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