Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Best Ever Vegan Chili

My vegetarian and vegan friendly chili recipe will definitely win you over  with its meaty texture and flavour. You will swear that you are actually eating the four hoof version. This recipe can't be more tasty, and is of course super healthy. It's sure to impress even the most ardent meat fan. The more "faint of heart" should adjust the seasonings because this recipe is fairly spicy. The medium hot was perfect for us but you can cut back on the chipotle and jalapeño peppers for a milder chili. Delicious served with jalapeño cornbread 
This recipe can also be adapted to canned lentils and beans. I would soak the tofu in additional wine and the liquid from the canned beans. In lieu of  the liquid reserved from home cooked beans, vegetable broth would add additional flavour to the chili base. 

1-10 ounce package firm tofu
1/2 cup dry red wine
1 1/2 cup liquid reserved from the cooked red kidney beans
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 onions chopped
3 garlic cloves chopped
2 teaspoons cumin
4 teaspoons chili powder
1 jalapeño chopped
1 smoked chipotle pepper chopped
1 can (5.5 ounce) of tomato paste 
2 cups chopped tomatoes
2 bay leaves
2 cups cooked brown lentils
3 1/2 cups cooked red kidney beans
1 large zucchini diced
3-4 cups water (for flavour use reserved liquid from the cooked beans and some tap water if needed)
1 tablespoon salt.

The night before, wash and soak the red kidney beans. Cook the beans which have soaked overnight in unsalted water (very important not to add the salt as it will slow the cooking process).Use enough water (about 8 cups)  to cook the beans. This should give you enough liquid when cooled to soak the tofu (1 1/2 cup), and also enough reserved liquid needed to cook the chili.
In a bowl crumble the tofu into small pieces to resemble coarsely ground beef. Pour in the red wine and 1 1/2 cup of the liquid from the boiled beans. Allow to marinate approx 30-40 minutes. This will give the tofu some colour and flavour.
In a large Dutch oven heat 4 tablespoons of olive oil and add the onions. Cook for 4 minutes to allow to brown and add the garlic, continue to cook for an additional minute. Stir in the  cumin, jalapeño, chipotle and tomato paste. Add the chopped tomatoes, the red kidney beans, lentils, bay leaves and zucchini. Pour in the tofu and marinade, plus the 3-4 cups of reserved liquid and bring to a boil. Allow to simmer for 35-45minutes to allow the flavours to absorb and the chili to thicken. Add the salt near the end of the cooking process. Serves 4-6


  1. I'm very interested in your chili. I'm making one for a chili cook-off (the four hoof kind). Any advice? Look at my blog and tell me if you have any suggestions.

  2. Thanks for taking an interest in my blog and signing up as a Follower. Good luck with the giveaway contest.
    I will definitely be checking out your blog but I'm not sure that a "north of the border Canadian" qualifies an expert on chili. All I know is that I have no complaints so far, and will be glad to leave suggestions on your site,for what it's worth.

  3. I love this recipe...Looks delicious :)

  4. Thanks so much and best of luck in contest giveaway.

  5. Shanthi,
    Thanks for dropping in and taking the time to leave a comment.

  6. Great recipe... I've never tried jalapeño cornbreads. I could only imagine this dish with rice or flatbreads. The chilli recipe looks great.

  7. Thanks, I just think the two go hand in hand with the Mexican theme. The cornbread is a simple recipe with finely chopped jalapeño added to it.
    Let me know if you give the chili recipe a try.