Vegetarian Chili

As the weather turns colder something deep inside sparks the undeniable longing for sweaters, pumpkin patches and of course warm, delicious, comfort food! Nothing says Autumn comfort food better than chili! In my families case it has to be this amazing(ly easy) homemade vegetarian chili!

My favorite thing about this recipe is how flexible it is. You can add or subtract anything based on your own personal preferences. The best place to start is with a good mix of beans. I like to use Hurst’s Hambeens 15 Bean Soup mix because it has just a beautiful and complex mix. I cook 1 1/2 cups of these dry beans on high in the instant pot for 25 minutes, allowing the pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes before manually releasing the rest of the pressure. I then drain and rinse the beans and store them away for later. Alternatively you can use 3, 15oz cans of any beans you want. mix and match for the best results. A popular choice is 1 can pinto beans, 1 can black beans and 1 can kidney beans, but you do you!

Note: For all my non-vegetarian readers, feel free to insert a step here for your meat product. Ground beef or ground turkey are great options, just fully cook and set aside for later.

Next chop up your veggies! I chose celery, onions, green onions, sweet peppers and hot peppers. Other great options I wish I had at home at the time would be carrots, mushrooms, radishes, etc… Add away to your hearts desire! Dice them all to your preferred size and get ready to sauté!

At this step their are two options, choose your own adventure style…
Crockpot or Stove Top

If you choose crockpot skip down past this next step.

If you choose stove top, add a tablespoon of olive oil or butter into a pan with your onions and minced garlic and cook until fragrant and starting to get soft. Next add in your chopped veggies and sauté just enough to start softening.

Next add all of the ingredients together in a good sized pot (or crockpot) and bring to a low boil. I mean all ingredients! Beans, canned tomatoes (juice and all), chili sauce, red wine vinegar, vegetable stock, sautéed vegetables and seasonings. Meat too if that’s your thing.

Reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 30 minutes. If using a crockpot cook on low for 6 hours or high for 4 hours.

At this point your chili may look more like soup, especially if you aren’t including meat in it. What I’m about to tell you will change your life! Remove 1-2 cups of the chili and put it in a blender, beans veggies, everything. The more chunks the better. Blend it up until thick and smooth. Add this back to your pot and watch as your soup magickly becomes a thick, mouth watering chili!

Serve hot and top with whatever you want! I chose cheese, sour cream and green onions. You can even use avocado, tortilla strips, bacon bits… Go crazy with it!

Ingredients

  • 50 OZ of your favorite bean combination (1 1/2 cups Hurst’s Hambeens 15 Bean Soup mix dry)
  • 1 14.5 Oz Canned diced Tomatoes (juice and all)
  • ½ Cup Chili Sauce
  • 1 Tsp Red Wine Vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil or butter
  • 2 Cups Vegetable stock
  • 5 Cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 1 Large Celery Sticks, Chopped
  • 6 mini or 2 Large Bell Pepper, Chopped
  • 2 medium Hot Peppers, Chopped
  • 1 Medium Onion Chopped
  • 3 Tbsp Chili Powder
  • 2 Tsp Smoked Paprika
  • 1 Tsp Cumin
  • 1 Tsp Black Pepper
  • 1 Tsp Salt
  • 1/2 Tsp Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1 Tsp Dried Oregano

Optional for Topping

  • Avocado
  • Fresh Cilantro
  • Sour Cream
  • Tortilla Chips
  • Shredded Cheese
  • Green Onions

INSTRUCTIONS

  • cook 1 1/2 cups of the dry beans on high in the instant pot for 25 minutes. Allow the pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes before manually releasing the rest of the pressure. Then drain and rinse the beans and store them away for later.
  • Chop all of the vegetables to a reasonably small bite sized pieces.
  • Add a tablespoon of olive oil or butter into a pan with your onions and minced garlic and cook until fragrant and starting to get soft.
  • Add in your chopped veggies and sauté just enough to start softening.
  • Add all ingredients into a large pot, and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Once cooked, take 1-2 cups of chili out of the crockpot and add to a blender. Blend until thick and only small chunks remain. (This is a super important step if you want chili texture and not soup!)
  • Add it back to the pot and stir.
  • Serve the chili warm with optional toppers and enjoy!

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