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Chili without carne


A vegetarian derivative of chilli con carne (just without the…meat). The vegetarian alternative to chilli is actually quite fresh and light to eat since it does not contain all the fat from the mince. And because it contains plenty of chilli it keeps your appetite wide open so you end up eating a lot of it. Great as a snack also with some doritos chips. Chilli typically includes kidney beans but you can substitute this for what you want. As far as I am concerned what makes chilli is the flavour of cumin and chilli (mainly). You can also add a small cube of dark chocolate to give extra richness.

Normally served with rice and we also added some potato wedges, doritos (talk about a carb overload!!). The bowl of “white stuff” you see on some of the pictures is actually tahini paste which we use it as a substitute for sour cream.

Vegan Mexican Chilli Recipe

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For the chilli sauce:

  • 2 small onions, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp dried coriander
  • 1 tsp mixed herbs (or just oregano, or marjoram)
  • 1 tin chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tsp tomatoe purée
  • 1/2 glass cooking red wine (I added some Madeira!)(optional)
  • 1/2 cup vegetable stock
  • 1 tin of kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 large red pepper, cut into strips
  • 6  mushrooms, sliced
  • Chopped coriander
  • 1 cube dark chocolate (optional)

For the potato wedges

  • Potatoes, cut into wedges, unpeeled (you can peel them)
  • Seasoning: Paprika, chilli powder, herbes de provence
  • Olive oil


  • Start by preparing the wedges, as they will take 30 minutes. Preheat your oven to 200 degrees.
  • Peel your potatoes, scatter on a non stick baking tray, sprinkle with paprika, chilli powder and the herbs.
  • Pour over olive oil and rub everything together till well mixed.
  • For the sauce, to start sauté the onions in a little vegetable oil, around 5 minutes.
  • Add the garlic and cook for a further 2 minutes.
  • Add the cumin, chilli, paprika, coriander and fry for 1 minute to release the flavours.

  • Add the tomatoe puree and fry for a further 1 minute
  • Add the wine and turn up the heat for a minute to burn off the alcohol.
  • Add the tinned tomatoes, vegetable stock, mixed herbs and red pepper.
  • Season with salt and pepper and allow to cook for 10 minutes.
  • Add the kidney beans and mushrooms and allow to simmer for a further 10 minutes.

  • Throw in the coriander, leave for a minute then add the chocolate and allow to melt in gently.

  • Serve with white rice

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  1. love herbs de province and don’t see it used often enough. can’t wait to try this. saving it (http://cookmarked.com)!

  2. Great recipe!! Chocolate is _NOT_ optional, it’s a great addition. I put a fair bit of olive oil in (at least 1/4 c.?) with onions, and maybe next time would add half a jalapeño (seeds removed).

  3. it doesent say how long it takes to make or how much it serves:(

    • Mongolian Chef

      This recipe should take you between 30-60 minutes and will serve two people comfortably

  4. Eileen

    this was super good, made by my omni hubbie. the potatoes were great.

  5. Rebecca

    This is a great recipe. We did a test for the best vegetarian chilli recipe to serve at our school fair – and this won. People raved about it. Congratulations to the chef(s)!

  6. Surfmonk

    This must the best, most filling and flavourful vegan chilli out there. I make it all the time and my carnivorous boyfriend LOVES it! Thank you for sharing x

    • The Mongolian Chef

      Thank you for the feedback really glad you enjoyed our recipe it’s one of our favourites too

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