Everyone loves a cozy bowl of chili on a gloomy day. And we all have our go-to chili recipe when a craving calls. But if your typical recipe calls for traditional meat/dairy ingredients, here are a few easy tips for “veganizing” your chili. You’ll still keep all that rich, spicy, warm and bold flavor – but this steamy bowl will be the veggie version!..
How-to Veganize Your Chili Recipe
1. The Meat. If you put gobs of meat in your chili recipe, here are a few flavorful, meat-free substitutions: TVP (comes dried – textured vegetable protein – looks like ground beef when re-hydrated) – or try chopped vegan sausage. I find that vegan sausage is packed with chili-perfect flavor (my fave is Field Roast brand’s spicy chipotle flavor). The sausage is contains oils, spices and vegan protein – while TVP is a lighter way to add protein, texture and flavor to your chili.
2. Beans. You are good here!
3. Sour Cream on Top. I love a cool, creamy dollop of vegenaise on top of my chili. You can also find soy-based sour cream substitutes that are quite tasty.
4. Beef or Chicken Stock. You can easily use a veggie broth in place of a meat-based broth.
5. Butter. Some recipes call for butter. Well you can substitute dairy butter with “vegan butter” – I like the Earth Balance brand. All the butter flavor you will need!
6. Cheese on Top. If you like a nice handful of cheese on top of your chili – try Daiya pepperjack cheese. It melts nicely and has a salty, savory, spicy cheese flavor.
7. More Cheesiness. I like to add in a few scoops of nutritional yeast to intensify the “cheezy” savory flavor of my chili. Plus nutritional yeast is packed with good for you nutrients like B vitamins.
8. Smoky Bacon. Smoky chili is delicious. But instead of adding high fat bacon to increase the smoke flavor – try vegan liquid smoke – in liquid form. It is awesome! I like the Colgin brand. Find it in the hot sauce section of Whole Foods. Or try vegan bacon too.
9. Beef Bouillon. I love Rapunzel brand veggie bouillon cubes. Perfect for adding vegan flavor to soups, stews and chili.
Try my Vegan Chili Recipe here!