7 Ways to Make Vegan Chili, Because Fall Is Finally Here

There's truly nothing better than getting cozy with a heaping cup of plant-based chili — here are a few different ways to make the vegan delicacy.

Lizzy Rosenberg - Author

Sep. 21 2021, Published 1:53 p.m. ET

Vegan Chili
Source: Getty Images

Haters will say that fall isn't officially here until Sept. 22, but in our eyes, autumn begins at the start of September. There's truly nothing better than breaking out your favorite flannels, decorating for Halloween, and most importantly, cozying up with a heaping bowl of chili — and luckily, there are so many vegan chili recipes out there that are simple, inexpensive, and most importantly, your ticket to cozy town. With that in mind, we thought we'd share a few of our favorites, below.

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Classic Three-Bean Chili

Bean Chili
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There is really nothing easier than making a classic three-bean chili — I created my own recipe several years ago, and have been making it regularly ever since. Grab your Crockpot, and toss in one 15-ounce can of kidney beans, one 15-ounce can of black beans, one 15-ounce can of chickpeas, and one 15-ounce can of corn. Pour a large can of tomatoes in, crushing up a few of them, and add four cups of vegetable stock, a large handful of diced pickled jalapeños, diced onion, and chopped cilantro.

If desired, add three cubed potatoes, and season with garlic powder, salt, cayenne, paprika, and black pepper. Cook for three hours on high and experience the magic. Garnish with vegan cheese and fresh diced red onion.

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Spicy Pumpkin Chili

Pumpkin Chili
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Pumpkin spice isn't everyone's cup of tea... but what about pumpkin chili? This is another original recipe that I've perfected over the years, and it truly never disappoints. Start out by blending a 15-ounce can of pumpkin with a diced fresh jalapeño pepper, a tablespoon of cayenne, and salt to taste. Put the mixture in the crockpot with three cups vegetable broth, two cans garbanzo beans, cubed butternut squash, salt, and paprika. Cook on high for three hours, and prepare to feel the cozy wrath of fall.

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White Bean Chili

There's truly nothing heartier than a white bean chili — and Bakerita does it best. Her recipe involves heating 2 tablespoons olive oil in a dutch oven over medium heat. Sauté a small diced white onion, and 1/2 a minced jalapeño for up to 10 minutes, add three minced garlic cloves, and 1 1/2 teaspoons of cumin and sauté for one more minute. Add two tablespoons of tapioca flower, a pound of chopped Yukon gold potatoes, and four cups vegetable broth.

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Add two 15-ounce cans white beans, 1 cup corn kernels, a jar of salsa verde, a can of green chiles, salt, pepper, and oregano. Simmer for 30 minutes, and garnish with fresh cilantro, lime juice, crumbled tortilla chips, vegan sour cream, and avocado.

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"Beef" Chili

The recipe for vegan beef chili is easy — follow the instructions to make my Classic Three-Bean Chili, but substitute one of the types of beans (your least favorite?) for a package of vegan ground beef (Trader Joe's Beef-less Ground Beef is perfect!). Cook exactly as you would the Three-Bean.

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Vegan Green Chili Stew

Brand New Vegan shares their vegan twist on the New Mexico favorite, making for a hearty and spicy meal. Simply sauté a diced onion and bell pepper, 4 gloves of minced garlic, and a 10-ounce can of jackfruit or another vegan meat substitute, simmering until heated through. Add a can of fire roasted tomatoes, 2 cups of vegetable broth, 1 cup water, and a diced medium Yukon Gold Potato.

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Simmer until potatoes are cooked, and add cumin, oregano, and salt to taste, before tossing in 3 cups roasted Hatch Green Chiles. Bring to a low boil, adding masa or flour to thicken, and simmer for 15 more minutes.

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Lentil Chili

Whole Foods offers a delectable recipe for brown lentil chili — start out by heating a large pot over medium-high heat, before adding a chopped yellow onion and a chopped red bell pepper. Stir and cook until vegetables are browned. Then stir in 3 tablespoons of vegetable broth and keep cooking. Toss in 5 cloves of chopped garlic, 4 teaspoons of chili powder, a 16-ounce package of brown lentils, 2 cans diced tomatoes, and about 8 cups vegetable broth.

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Boil and simmer for 30 minutes, and cook uncovered for 10 more minutes. Stir in 1/4 cups of fresh chopped cilantro, and serve.

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Chick'n Chili

To make Veganosity's Vegan White Bean "Chicken" Chili, sauté a large chopped Vidalia onion and 4 chopped ribs of celery. When onions are translucent, toss in 1 chopped bell pepper, 16 ounces of shredded jackfruit, and 1 chopped jalapeño pepper. Cook until softened, and add 5 cloves of minced garlic, a 60 ounce can of white beans, 3 tablespoons cumin, salt, 1 teaspoon dried ground oregano, 1 teaspoon dried ground sage, 1 teaspoon dried ground parsley, and 1/4 teaspoon white pepper.

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Cook for more two minutes and stir, before adding 1 quart of broth and 3 to 5 cups water. Bring to a boil, before reducing the heat to low. Simmer for about 2 1/2 hours, and stir every 15 minutes. Throw in a mix of 1/4 cup cornmeal + 6 tablespoons of water, along with more salt and pepper. Serve hot, and garnish with 1/2 cup chopped cilantro, cubed avocado, and lime wedges.

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