Not only are vegetarian options extremely healthy, but they also take half as much time to prepare compared to meat-heavy dishes. Here are our favorite vegetarian chili recipes.
February 27, 2014
1 of 15Photo: Jason Varney
Vegetarian Chili—hot, healthy, delicious. They're practical in that you can make large batches and enjoy for days on end. These veggie chili options will nourish your soul and warm your body from the tips of your toes to the top of your head.
First on our list is our Can't-Believe-It's-Vegan Chili. This dish is sure to make it into your regular rotation: completely satisfying chili that cooks in a fraction of the time it takes to make traditional meat chili. This recipe makes plenty; freeze leftovers for up to three months. Vegan sausage varies widely in taste and texture; we liked the meatiness and mild heat of the
2 of 15Photo: Iain Bagwell
A good veggie chili is really all about the texture. Overcooked vegetables simply won't do. Here, we combine crisp peppers, carrots, mushrooms, and beans with nutty wheat berries—a hearty whole grain that adds a desirable chewiness to this plant-packed pot, and won't break down after a long, slow-simmer. Liquid aminos help boost umami, but you can sub low-sodium soy sauce instead. It's a "big hit with adults and kids" according to reviewer Alexa, just be sure to seed the jalapeño to tone down the heat for your little ones. Top with ripe avocado for a pop of bright flavor and creamy finish.
Another variation of three-bean veggie chili, this recipe calls for cannellini beans as opposed to black beans. Crushed red pepper also gives this dish some subtle heat.
4 of 15Photo: Oxmoor House
Pinto Bean Chili with Corn and Winter Squash
The spiciness of this light yet satisfying chili is complemented by the subtle sweetness of corn and winter squash. Queso fresco is a crumbly, slightly salty Mexican cheese that's available in many large supermarkets. If you can't find it, substitute crumbled feta or farmer cheese. For a heartier chili, add one cup thawed frozen meatless crumbles. For a vegan version, use shredded soy cheddar or mozzarella cheese.
5 of 15Photo: Randy Mayor
White Bean Chili with Corn Chip Crunch
The classic munchy—corn chips—adds a little salty, crunchy punch to each bite.
6 of 15Photo: Howard Puckett
Chipotle Black Bean Chili
Chipotle chiles frequently come packaged in adobo sauce (a Mexican-type red sauce) and can be very hot. They're usually found in the Mexican section of your supermarket. Substitute 1/4 teaspoon of ground pepper for the chipotle, if desired.
7 of 15Photo: Johnny Autry
Quinoa and Roasted Pepper Chili
A bowl of spicy Quinoa and Roasted Pepper Chili guarantees to take the chill off a cold winter's day. This vegetarian chili is loaded with fresh vegetables, pinto beans, and quinoa and gets its zing from poblano chiles.
This soup has a mild chile flavor. If you want more heat, increase the amount of chili powder and don't seed the jalapeños.
9 of 15Photo: Johnny Autry
White Bean and Hominy Chili
Vegetarian chipotle sausage packs quite a punch, adding savory depth to the entire pot of white chili.
10 of 15Photo: Beau Gustafson
The possibilities are endless as far as bean-based veggie chilis are concerned. This recipe utilizes red kidney beans, black beans, and garbanzo beans. Add corn muffins to this three-bean chili recipe, and you've got yourself a meal.
11 of 15Photo: Randy Mayor
Moroccan Chickpea Chili
This recipe—packed with chickpeas, canned tomatoes, carrots, celery, and onion—proves that you don't need meat for a satisfying and filling chili.
12 of 15Photo: Randy Mayor
Jane's Vegetarian Chili
Boasting less than 300 calories and almost 15 grams of fiber per bowl, this hearty chili skips the ground beef and uses chickpeas, black beans, kidney beans, and cannellini beans for a protein boost. To make this a complete vegetarian meal, skip the Worcestershire sauce or use anchovy-free.
13 of 15Photo: Becky Luigart-Stayner
Chunky Vegetarian Chili
This vegetable chili recipe is a great way to get kids to eat fiber-rich foods. It can be taken on camping trips or packed in a thermos for school lunches.