As a foodie, food taster, menu creator and also flavour-seeker, making a hearty vegan chili is NO small feat. Beans are delicious and all but can fall flat quick if just married into a tomato bath with a sprinkle of spices without much layering.
Let’s face it, meat does kinda build some OMMPH to a good, hearty chili as it fills in the gaps and adds texture and bite. Don’t worry though, this chili is cruelty-free, is full of ridiculous flavour, requires some patience but I promise, you will get one kick-butt, delicious, over-the-top chili that won’t leave you hanging.
Now listen, I KNOW there are other Beyond Meat chili recipes on the internet, that all claim to have the best flavour. I have googled them all and some actually look pretty amazing and others well, as Borat would say…”not so much”. I do challenge you that before the winter is over, give this recipe a try, send me pics or drop comments of your beautiful chili and my most favourite, proprietary recipe that I know will impress those carnivore friends of yours you have been hoping to convert 😉
Flavour layering 101‘
Before we get started, I have to talk to you about flavour layering. In chili, it is soooo important. So please do not dump your spices in the pot hoping to create a shortcut and get the same results. Be patient with my layering, and if your palatte needs a little more or less, get creative but with chili, less is more. (Wait-did i just say that when using a word like BOMBASTIC to describe chili??!!!) No really, it is in the case of chili. THAT’S my secret. Now you know.
1 can kidney, black and pinto beans each – all rinsed very well, drained, set aside
1 can regular beans in tomato sauce
1 can can marzano tomatoes in juice (do not cheap out on this!)
1 Cup corn kernels
1 large bell pepper of each: green, orange, red, large dice
2 ribs celery, small dice
1.5 medium onions, small dice
1 Cup water
1/4 Cup Whisky or 3 tsp apple cider vinegar
3 large dice plum tomatoes, seeded
1 block Beyond meat
1 tsp liquid smoke
2 tsp sugar
1/2 poblano pepper, seeded, sprayed with olive oil and roasted in oven until charred slightly
1 tsp chili power, cumin, salt and smoked paprika plus 1 sm thumb of whole cinnamon stick and 1/2 tsp oregano + 1/2 tsp garlic powder
VEGAN AVOCADO LIME CREMA (for garnish)
1 large avocado
1 tsp olive oil
1.5 limes, juiced
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 C vegan sour cream
Blend all ingredients until smooth. refrigerate until ready to use as a garnish on chili.
- Take JUST your beans, corn, tomatoes, cinnamon stick and water and place into a crock pot. Turn on high and cook as you prep other ingredients.
- Roast your poblano pepper and small dice, placing into crock pot with beans and water.
- Turn pan onto medium heat in oil and saute onion until translucent. Add celery and saute for 2 minutes. Add remaining spices and cook for another minute.
- Incorporate your peppers into the crock pot and cook for two hours on high.
- Add beyond crumble in large chunks, breaking slightly but keeping meaty. Turn up pan if needed to get the product hot and sizzling. After 5 minutes, add liquid smoke and booze or vinegar along with the sugar, and cook down for a minute or so. Remove from heat.
- Turn heat to low and add beyond crumble. Remove cinnamon stick at this point. Cook on low for 3-4 hours total. Check spices and heat and adjust salt as you wish.
Serve immediately with crema, tortilla chips, cilantro, lime wedges, red onion, vegan cheese or whatever your heart desires.
Last but not least, enjoy and tell your friends!