Five alarm vegan chili

By Rodney Bowers
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  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 large sweet onions, finely chopped
  • 2 celery stalks chopped
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 cup toasted homemade chili powder (recipe follows)
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/2 head of garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 828 milliliter can diced tomatoes
  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can pinto beans, drained
  • 6 cups of vegetable stock or water
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup medium coarse bulgur wheat
  • 2 cups of vegan ground meat OR 2 cups crumbled firm tofu OR 1 cup ground walnuts and 2 cups ground mushrooms
  • 1/2 cup cilantro, roughly chopped – plus more as garnish

Chili powder recipe:

  • 1/8 cup sweet paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin


  1. Make the vegan ground meat and transfer to a bowl and set aside.
  2. Next make the Vegan Chili: Heat canola oil in a heavy bottom pan over medium-high heat. Add in onion, celery, and selected chilies. Cook, stirring frequently, until onions begin to brown, seven to nine minutes.
  3. Reduce heat to medium and stir in cumin, chili powder, tomato paste, and garlic. Cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, for about one minute.
  4. Add in diced tomatoes, black beans, pinto beans, vegetable stock, soy sauce, bulgur, and the vegan meat or tofu mixture.
  5. Put the lid on, bring the mixture to a boil, and then let it simmer until it thickens to your liking, approximately 40 minutes. The longer it simmers the thicker it will become.
  6. Stir in the cilantro right before serving.
  7. Ladle into bowls and top it off with the garnishes.

Chili powder:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Stir.


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