This best vegetarian chili recipe was passed from someone to my Mom, Sally Reed, who passed it on to me.  The vegetarian chili recipe has a meat option which you can cook in the pot or on the side, which is what I do.  The secret of the recipe is to always add an ingredient when you get it; my addition was the corn.  If you use it, please tell me what you add.  It’s mild-to-spicy, depending on how much chili powder and hot sauce you throw in, and very easy to prepare.  At parties, I  serve the meat in a separate bowl. Sally Reed’s vegetarian chili recipe serves about 10, though it’s best on the second day.

  • 1 package ground beef (optional)
  • 2 cans whole stewed tomatoes
  • 3-4 cans red kidney beans (half-drained)
  • 2-3 chopped onions
  • 2 chopped green peppers
  • 2 chopped jalapeño peppers (optional)
  • 3-5 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 shakes dry hot pepper
  • 1 can whole kernel corn
  • 4 bay leaves
  • Salt and pepper
  • Hot sauce (to taste)
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • White rice

Brown meat at high heat, lower heat and cook for 5 minutes and set aside.

In stew pot, cook peppers, jalapeño peppers  and onions until onions are transparent (about 5 minutes).

Mix chili powder with water to make chili paste.

Add stewed tomatoes, hot sauce, chili powder paste, remaining spices and cover and cook at low heat for 1 hour.

Add kidney beans, uncover and cook for 30 minutes.

Add corn and cook for 30 minutes.

Serve in bowls over rice with optional meat.

Difficulty: easy.

Time: 2 hours of intermittent attention.

Precision:  approximate measurement OK.

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