Super Simple Vegetarian Chili

by zesty on January 14, 2011 · 13 comments

Happy Friday!  This post might be a little funny as you read as to why I decided to make vegetarian chili.  Not that I have anything against vegetarian cuisine as a matter fact I tend to enjoy it, however all day I was craving a big meaty bowl of chili.

As I begin the process, I get the onions in the sauce pan with a little olive oil, I start preparing the spice blend and then I go to the fridge and reach for the package of lean ground beef.  Guess what happens next?  Yeah you are right, the ground beef is SPOILED, almost a purplish green color and a stink that would knock you over…. zesty is now cranky!

I kept my composure and decided to add mushrooms to act as a meat replacement and continue on with my chili craving.  The results were very impressive.  We loved it!


  • 1 Tbsp. Olive oil
  • 1 Cup onion
  • 2 Cups Mushrooms (chopped)
  • 1 Tbsp. chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh oregano (or 1 teaspoon dried)
  • 1 Tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 Tsp. Oregano
  • 1 Tsp. ground mustard
  • 2 Tbsp. chopped garlic
  • Chopped green and red pepper ( optional )
  • 1 Cup chick peas
  • 1 1/2 Cups cooked Romano beans (one 15-ounce can, rinsed and drained )
  • 1 1/2 Cups cooked Kidney beans (one 15-ounce can, rinsed and drained )
  • 3 Cups diced tomatoes (or one 28-ounce can roasted diced tomatoes, undrained)
  • 1 Cup fat free vegetable broth


  1. Preheat Sauce pan or Dutch oven over medium heat.
  2. Add olive oil onion and sauté over medium-high heat until soft and just starting to brown.
  3. Add mushrooms and peppers; cook over medium high heat, until cooked through; about 6 minutes.
  4. Add chili powder, oregano, cumin, mustard, garlic, beans, chick peas,  tomatoes, and broth.
  5. Bring to a boil over high heat and then reduce the heat to a simmer.
  6. Cover and let simmer for 40 minutes.
  7. Remove cover and simmer until desired thickness is reached
  8. ENJOY!

Zesty Tip: If you want your chili to be a little thicker you have two options.  You can remove the cover for the last 20-20 minutes to allow it to thicken or you can take a cup or so of chili out and puree it and stir it back in to aide in the thickening process.

I am not sure why but lately I have been addicted to rice and beans so I decided to serve mine with a little side of rice and some nacho chips.  Of course you could serve with a big piece of corn bread, some homemade bisucits or whatever tickles your fancy.  I hope you h ave a great weekend and I will see you on Monday.

Take care


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{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Danica

I am always amazed at how you can turn something you don’t want into something that sounds and LOOKS amazing!!! I am totally one to spice it up although I am thinking of adding your BBQ sauce to this recipe instead ~ YUM! Another great recipe Z that is actually quite points+ friendly ~ Thanks!!!

Have a fantastic weekend!



2 Baking 'n' Books

I agree with Danica. Looks superbe. Mushrooms do make for a meatier texture don’t they? What type do you use? Regular button, portobello?


3 ZestyCook

I went with Regular button as that is what I had on hand.


4 sarah m

ummmm….chicken broth is NOT vegetarian :) Looks good though!


5 ZestyCook

@Sarah – Good point. I guess I missed that as I was adding it in last night. Thanks for the clarification. I guess you could use Veg stock and or water to keep it Vegetarian.


6 Dynamics

Hey Zesty, I have never heard of Romano beans. What part of the country has this bean? What do they taste like? You always amaze me. I love how you just toss things together to make a fantastic meal.


7 ZestyCook

@Dynamics – according to my research – Romano beans are a form of flat snap bean which originated in Italy. Many Italians cook with these beans when they are in season during the summer months, and they are also cultivated in other regions of the world. They work well in soups, stews etc.

Hope this helps.


8 Bonnie Macleod

Hey Cory….. I have a big pot of Chili on simmering as I type… That is for Sat. night supper…Tonight is Beef Stew with Herbed dumplings…. MMMMMMMM…. I love to serve my chili with a big dollop (spellcheck please) of sour cream (restaurant style) and some taco chips….. Is it almost supper time…… Im hungry… Have a great weekend Cory…


9 Jennifer

I am always looking for new vegetarian chili recipes. I look forward to trying this one soon.


10 DEE

This is the BEST Veg chili ever! I couldn’t find Romano beans so I used pinto instead. I also used 1 cup more mushrooms. I am always looking for good recipes for my Vegan daughters and it gets pretty hard after awhile. Thank you, keep them coming :)


11 zesty

Thanks Dee – So glad you enjoyed it!


12 Kerrie

Though, I am going to try this recipe. I’m afraid I will have to tweak it a bit. Because if there is chicken broth in it, it’s not REALLY vegetarian. And my fiance would get very sick if he had it in his system. Vegetable Broth FTW. <3 Thanks for the simple recipe. Everywhere else was absolutely bizarre!


13 zesty

Thanks Kerrie for pointing out my blunder. I modified the recipe to include vegetable broth.



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