Really Good Chili

This is delicious and easy to make too! This recipe makes a large pot of chili – we had friends over for a last minute dinner tonight and it fed 4 adults, 1 teenage boy, 1 10-year old girl and our toddler with enough for most people to have seconds. Our toddler had two big bowls, she loved it!

I served this with Daiya shredded vegan cheese, chopped italian parsley (all I had) and Habanero Sauce.

The cocoa powder really brings out the flavor. I love using cocoa powder in my chili… and Guinness beer and strong coffee too! The chili was gone before I had a chance to take a better picture but here’s what it looked like… YUM! Next time I think I’ll add some quinoa, some chopped kale or chard and a few cups of hominy!

Really Good Chili

Toddler Approved!

This recipe comes from Nava Atlas‘s new book Vegan Holiday Kitchen, I highly recommend this book… it’s awesome!!

Really Good Chili

By Nava Atlas

Serve with stone-ground tortilla chips, guacamole, and a big salad or cole slaw.


  • Water for sautéing veggies
  • 2 medium onions, finely chopped
  • 4 to 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 medium green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, diced
  • 3 28-ounce cans beans of your choice (try a combination of pinto, pink, and black beans), drained and rinsed – I used 3 15oz cans each of pinto beans and black beans – 6 cans total
  • 1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes, with liquid
  • 1 16-ounce can tomato sauce
  • 1 to 2 jalapeño or other hot peppers, seeded and minced, or one 8-ounce can mild or hot chopped green chiles – I used green chilies
  • 1 tablespoon good-quality chili powder
  • 1 Tbs unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • Chopped ripe tomatoes for garnish
  • Chopped cilantro or parsley for garnish


  1. Water/broth sauté the onion sauté over medium-low heat until translucent. Add the garlic and sauté until the onion is golden. Add the remaining ingredients except the last three. Bring to a simmer, then cover and simmer gently for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the peppers are tender and the flavors have melded.
  2. Season with salt and pepper, and adjust the other seasonings. If time allows, let the chili stand for up to several hours before serving. Heat through as needed.The chili should be nice and thick; if it has gotten too thick, stir in a cup of water. Serve in individual bowls, garnished with tomatoes and cilantro.

Varations and optional garnishes:

Add a cup or two of cooked corn kernels toward the end of cooking time

* Add a medium or large firm-cooked sweet potato, peeled and diced

* Add a diced zucchini or yellow summer squash about halfway into the cooking time

* Serve with grated nondairy cheddar cheese on the side for garnishing individual servings

* Put out extra “hot stuff” like minced fresh chili peppers, dried hot red pepper flakes, or hot sauce for those who like their chilies extra-spicy

Preparation time: 10 minute(s) | Cooking time: 40 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 12

Nutrition (per serving, including oil): 236 calories, 37 calories from fat, 4.3g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 938mg sodium, 719.6mg potassium, 39.9g carbohydrates, 11.6g fiber, 5.8g sugar, 11.4g protein, 6.8 points.

Without oil: 216 calories, 17 calories from fat, 2g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 938mg sodium, 719.6mg potassium, 39.9g carbohydrates, 11.6g fiber, 5.8g sugar, 11.4g protein, 6.2 points.

Saute onions and garlic

Add remaining ingredients and simmer

Didn’t last long!!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger... Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Comment 12 Replies

Your Information

  1. I made this for Super Bowl, with a modification or two.. love it!

  2. Jeri Pero-Fraser Reply

    Just came across your site today & am so excited to try some of your recipes. The “Chili” is a must do this weekend:)
    Kale is my favorite go to food so i will be trying all your kale recipes soon!!

    • Welcome Jeri! That chili is always a hit! Try the Kool Ranch Kale Chips, those are the best!!!

  3. jstew52 Reply

    This looks good. I just made the chili from the latest issue of Cook’s Illustrated and subbed TVP for the suggested barley. Most excellent.

  4. Courtney Cloe Reply

    Any chance I could make this in the crock pot?

    • I’m going to make it in a crockpot tomorrow, I’m sure it’ll work great! Just sautéed the veggies first :-)

  5. Pingback: Leftovers Lasagna with Veggie “Pasta” | Kid Tested Firefighter Approved

  6. Kim Reply

    Hi. I’m new to plant based cooking and was looking for a kid friendly meal for lunch and came across your lasagna, however in looking through the list of ingredients I found your chili recipe and had to just rave about it. I added a sweet potato and 1 habanero. I just tasted it and it is amazing. With the cocoa you first get this amazing sweet like flavor (sweet potatoes) and then you get the heat from the habanero. Thank you for posting this online.

  7. Linder Reply

    Hi! We are new to plant based eating as well and looking for ideas when I found your blog. Chili is one of my husband’s favorites and he really enjoyed this one. He skeptical but supportive and I have two little boys I’m trying to feed as well, your blog is such a great help for me so a big thank you from our house!

    • So glad I can help! Good for you, you should be proud of yourself!! Way to go Mom!! :-)