Vegetarian Chili

Vegetarian Chili can be made to suit any taste.

Vegetarian chili is not unlike any meat chili in that there are quite a few ways to make it. Just think of how many veggies there are out there and you can see it is quite easy to come up with enough ingredients to appease any chili eater, not just the vegetarian.

This recipe is easy to modify, but is pretty tasty as is. The main thing to remember is to start with about half of the seasonings and slowly add a little more according to your own tastes.

If there is a veggie patty you enjoy, don’t be afraid to break a few up and add it to your chili. This is the equivalent of adding burger meat to a meat chili.

Chili is one of the most individualistic recipes. Look at the recipe as a guide. There might be a vegetable or two in the recipe that for some reason doesn’t appeal to you. If that’s the case, substitute another vegetable. Think about what veggies you like. Also, do you prefer black beans or kidney beans or even no beans at all. Are you into super spicy or mild? All these things should be considered.

This recipe is easy to modify, but is pretty tasty as is. The main thing to remember is to start with about half of the seasonings and slowly add a little more according to your own tastes. It is always easier to add seasoning and spices than it is to get rid of too much.

One thing I do differently that takes a little effort but adds more flavor is to grate a bit of the carrots to get a little carrot juice. Use the fine grater and grate into a small bowl so you can add the juice and pulp at the right time.

I like a lot of different veggies so the chili is nice and chunky. Again, feel free to add or subtract veggies as your taste buds dictate. Give this a try and enjoy.

Vegetarian Chili
1 large yellow onion, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
3 carrots: 1 small carrot, grated; 2 carrots, sliced
1 large green pepper, diced
1 large red pepper, diced
1 large zucchini, diced, using only the outsides & not the seeded center
½ head broccoli, peel & dice the stem, cut the top into small flowerets
3 small cans of beans, any combination of drained kidney, black, garbanzo, etc.
3 cans diced tomatoes
½ bag frozen super sweet corn
2 large cloves garlic, diced
1-2 jalapeño peppers, minced
1 T oil
5 bay leaves
1 T cumin
½ T chili powder
2 T dried oregano
2 t chili paste
Salt and pepper to taste

Cut all the veggies. Blanch and cool the broccoli, keeping the flowerets and the stalk separated. Drain the canned beans before you start.

Get a pot hot on the stove and then turn down to medium heat. Add onions and cook until translucent. Add garlic, carrots, celery, jalapeño, broccoli stalk, peppers, half tablespoon of cumin, oregano, bay leaves and chili powder. Sauté for a few minutes. Add zucchini and sauté another minute, stirring regularly.

Add tomato and simmer on low for 15 minutes. Add beans and simmer on low 15 more minutes Add corn and flowerets and let simmer for 10 minutes. Add chili paste a little at a time and any more seasonings. Salt and pepper to taste.

Remove bay leaves before serving.