cartoon by marc johns.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Hearty Vegetarian Chili

Veggie Chili!
This is a hearty, yummy, healthy, filling vegetarian chili, especially delicious on these cold rainy days.  It's chock full of veggies, beans, and soy protein.  It has some spice, but it isn't too spicy; to me, it is just right.  If you like spicy food, increase the chili powder and cayenne.  The sweetness and smokiness of the baked beans really mixes nicely with the spiciness of the chili powder.  This is also a very forgiving recipe; you can't really go wrong - it all goes in the crock pot and the flavors blend on their own.  (If you do change the ingredients, just make sure there isn't too much liquid or you'll make a soup, or conversely, if there isn't enough liquid, it will just become a big mush.)  The longer this is in the crock pot, the better!  The flavors just get better and better.  This is also one of those recipes that taste better the next day.

I serve it with shredded cheddar cheese, chopped onions, and corn bread.  I adapted this recipe from a recipe on allrecipes.com .

It makes 8-10 servings.

1 (17.5 ounce) can/ box black bean soup
2 (15 ounce) cans of mixed chili beans (black, pinto, kidney), drained and rinsed
1 (16 ounce) can of vegetarian baked beans
1 (14.5 ounce) can of dices tomatoes in puree (I used garlic flavored tomatoes, but it is also good with jalapeno flavored tomatoes if you want the chili to be more spicy.)
1 (15 ounce) can of whole kernel corn, drained
1 package of soy meat crumbles
1 white/ yellow onion, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
2 stalks of celery, diced
3 cloves of garlic, chopped

Spice Ingredients
Dried Spices:
Use them proportionate to your own taste.  These amounts are what I use when I make this chili.
1 tablespoon of chili powder
1 teaspoon of coriander
1 tablespoon of cumin
1 1/2 teaspoons of cayenne pepper

Onto the cooking!!!

1. Drain and rinse the cans of mixed chili beans.
Draining and rinsing the mixed beans.
2. Pour the beans in the crock pot, along with the black bean soup.
Black bean soup in the crock pot.

Beans on top of the black bean soup in crock pot.
3. Add the tomatoes and their juices.
Tomatoes in the crock pot.
4. Drain and add the corn.
Corn in the crock pot.
5. Add the baked beans (and the sauce from the can) to the crock pot.
The baked beans in the crock pot.
6. Dice the onion and begin heating olive oil in a skillet on medium heat.  When the skillet is hot, add the soy meat crumbles and the onion.  Follow the instructions on your soy meat package for heating it.  (For me, it said 6-7 minutes).
Sauteing the soy meat crumbles and the onions.

Just to show the texture of the soy meat up close -
in a chili like this, you really can't tell the difference!
7. While the onions and soy meat saute, stir the beans, corn, and tomatoes in the crock pot.  Then, add the garlic.
8. Dice the green pepper and celery.  Add the green pepper to the crock pot.
Green pepper.
9. Add the soy meat crumble and onion mixture to the crock pot.
Soy meat and onions.
10.  Stir the soy meat mixture into the bean mixture.  Then, add the celery to the crock pot.
11. Add the proportion of dried spices you choose.
Dried spices.
12. Mix all the ingredients.  Turn the crock pot on low.  Heat for at least 3-4 hours, longer if possible.  Enjoy!!!

Close-up of the finished product.


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