Meaty, tomatoey, spicy. It’s a love of mine. It’s real and it’s deep.

I love me some chili. It’s a go-to in our house, because it’s pretty easy to prep and cook, it’s hot and hearty, it’s crying food. You know those foods you can just sit, feel sorry for yourself, have a good sob into and then eat and still be tasty? Yeah, it’s one of those? Oh, you’ve never cried into a bowl of food to add seasoning? Try it. It’s the new Orange Shower.

This is a veg version. I still use the word ‘meaty’ here, because I chose ingredients that feel hearty, slightly chewy and give an umami to your food that meat normally would. This is one of those vegetarian meals that make you go, “No meat? Meh.”

Tangent: I love, “Meh.” It’s such a universally descriptive word yet it doesn’t really mean anything. I don’t have to explain it to you, you just get it by the sound that your mouth makes as you form the word when you’re reading.

Un-tangent: I add a ton of vegetables to nearly everything I eat. I want to write a post in the near future about how I shop and how I end up with so many vegetables to use up throughout the week, but that’s for another day. Minestrone? VEGETABLES! Bolognese? VEGETABLES! Chicken fried steak? Well… I can only do so much.

Experiment with ingredients in here, but keep the ‘base’ the same. It will turn out delicious, I promise.


Bean-ey (Baby) Chili

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 30 mins

Makes 4 servings


  • Mirepoix
    • 1 medium onion, diced
    • 4 celery stalks, diced
    • 3 medium carrots, diced
  • 4 cloves of garlic, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons of ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon of ground coriander
  • 2 tablespoons of smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon of oregano
  • 2-3 pinches of cayenne pepper
  • 3 bay leaves (damn the daft Chipotle-hating-idiots)
  • Optional: 2-3 dashes of liquid smoke
  • 16 oz can of crushed tomatoes
  • 1 cup of vegetable broth
The rest
  • As many hearty vegetables as you care to dice up. I added red peppers, mushrooms and zucchini/green squash.
  • 2-3 cans of your favorite beans, drained – I used red kidney beans and black beans but I like adding chick peas/garbanzo beans, white kidney beans etc.
  • Manchego Cheese, to garnish
  • Parsley, finely chopped, to garnish


Method (and a touch of madness)

  • Fry off your mirepoix in a tablespoon of oil. Once everything is softened, add in the rest of your vegetables.
  • Once they are softened, add in the rest of the base ingredients and bring to a simmer.
  • After 20 mins, add in the cans of beans, continue to simmer, stirring frequently.
  • Remove from heat and serve with brown rice. Garnish with cheese and parsley.
  • Enjoy that feeling of accomplishment and satisfaction.

 Guide for the ‘arians:

  • Flexitarian – good
  • Pescetarian – good
  • Vegetarian – good
  • Omnivore – good
  • Vegan – remove the cheese
  • Gluten free – good
  • Lactose free – remove the cheese


Enjoy your first cry bowl!


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