This easy vegan chili sin carne recipe is a delicious meal prep dish that you can serve with rice or other side dishes you love. Use your favorite meat alternative to make this nutrient-rich and healthy plant-based chili to serve for a quick lunch or dinner – It is spicy, meat-less, flavorful, and super simple!
The Best Vegan Chili Sin Carne
Chili is one of those Mexican dishes that can always lift your mood after a busy day or when the weather is cold. I really love this recipe because it’s so quick and easy to make with simple pantry ingredients. But the best thing is that it not only tastes incredibly delicious, but it will also nourish your body and soul!
Aside from that, it is also a great recipe to use up leftovers! If you have leftover veggies or side dishes from the previous day like rice, pasta, or potatoes, you can always serve those with this flavorful vegan chili sauce. I highly recommend preparing the chili ahead so you can save some time on a busy day and don’t need to worry about what to cook. However, if you already have my cookbook “Vegan Foodpoorn” at home, then you may already know this recipe 🙂 .
Chili con Carne vs Chili sin Carne
Unlike traditional chili con carne, my chili sin carne is meat-less as it contains no meat or other dairy ingredients. That makes it even healthier than the non-vegan versions, however, the taste is at least as amazing as the classic chili recipes.
This chili dish contains a lot of fiber and plant-based protein from the beans and the meat substitute. Since the spices are completely adjustable, you can spice it up to your liking – whether very spicy, mild or even slightly sour with a squeeze of lemon or lime juice – that’s your choice!
What vegan meat substitute can I use?
I use dry sunflower granules as a meat alternative here because it’s soy-free, gluten-free and I love the texture. However, you can use any ground meat alternative you like such as soy granules or packaged vegan ground beef. Also, regular firm tofu will do. Simply squeeze it out and then crumble it with your hands into small chunks. For detailed instructions on how to prepare tofu, check out my recipe for vegan tofu nuggets.
If you don’t want to use any of those meat substitutes, you can simply leave it out and add more beans or vegetables instead. Here are some healthy natural ingredients that you can add to your chili sin carne for more nutrients and proteins:
- Chickpeas: Legumes are always perfect for your vegan diet!
- Beans: such as kidney beans, black beans, or white beans.
- Peas: green or yellow ones.
- Lentils: whether red, brown, green, or black lentils – any will do! However, please note that they have different cooking times.
- Mushrooms: are also a great meat alternative because of their meaty texture! I recommend chopping and sautéing them beforehand.
- Quinoa: This gluten-free grain contains plenty of protein and gives your chili sin carne a thick textured consistency.
How to make Vegan Chili sin Carne
As always I recommend checking out the recipe video and these step-by-step photos first. Then you’ll find the full recipe with exact measurements in the recipe card below!
Step 1: Prepare the ingredients
First, peel and chop the garlic, onions, and carrots. Also, soak the sunflower or soy granules in the vegetable broth for about 5 minutes. Then squeeze it out well but reserve the excess broth. (If using tofu or another ready-made meat alternative, you can skip this step).
Step 2: Cook your chili
First, sauté the diced onion and carrots along with the vegan mince in a pan with a little oil for a few minutes. Then add the garlic, chili, paprika powder, and tomato paste and continue sautéing it for another minute. Next, add the tomatoes, reserved broth, kidney beans, corn, some salt, pepper, and sugar to taste.
Now let it simmer over low heat for about 20-25 minutes so the flavors can develop. While your chili is simmering, cook the rice according to package instructions, so both components will be ready at the same time. Lastly, taste your chili sin carne again and adjust seasonings as needed.
How can I serve my chili?
I love to serve my delicious vegan chili with rice. Then I garnish my dish with chili flakes, black and regular sesame seeds, fresh parsley, and lime wedges on the side – It’s so good! However, there are countless side dishes you can serve your chili sin carne with. The most popular ones are probably the versions with rice, potatoes or even pasta. Other great ideas are couscous, bulgur, or buckwheat, as well as mashed potatoes and millet. If you want to keep it simpler, you can also just dip some tortillas, fresh baguette, or bread in it. Sometimes I even enjoy it with vegan naan or aloo paratha. If you like, you can also add a spoonful of cashew ricotta or vegan aioli on top of your dish.
Anyway, it doesn’t really matter what veggies or grains you choose – just serve it whatever you have on hand!
Can I make chili sin carne ahead?
This recipe is great for meal prep because you can make a big batch ahead for later meals! If 3-4 servings aren’t enough for you, simply double the recipe and store leftovers in the fridge for up to 3 days.
The finished chili can also be frozen in portions! Then you can reheat your desired portion in a pot whenever you want. That way you’re all set for the next busy days so there’s no need to worry about what to eat!
*Note: Be sure to store or freeze your chili sin carne separately from the side dish to prevent it from getting mushy.
This Vegan Chili sin Carne Recipe is:
- Dairy-free (lactose-free)
- Quick and easy to prepare
- Hearty and savory
- Loaded with protein
- Great for Meal-Prepping
- The perfect vegan lunch or dinner!
More easy vegan Mexican recipes to try:
- Sweet Potato Quesadillas
- Mexican Tortilla Casserole
- Mexican Pasta Salad with Chipotle Sauce
- Vegan Burrito Samosas with Guacamole
- Mexican One-Pot Taco Pasta
- Mexican Sweet Potato Skins
If you try this vegan chili sin carne, please leave me a comment and a rating because I’d love to hear your feedback on the recipe! And if you take a photo of your yummy chili dish and share it on Instagram, please tag me @biancazapatka and use the hashtag #biancazapatka to make sure I won’t miss your post! Have fun cooking!
Chili sin carne (Vegan + Easy)Author:
Chili Sin Carne
- 2-3 cloves garlic chopped
- 2 onions diced
- 1-2 carrots diced
- 4.2 oz (120 g) sunflower or soy granules or 8.8 oz tofu or a ready-made meat alternative of your choice*
- 1 ⅔ cups (400 ml) vegetable broth
- 2-3 tbsp oil
- 1 small chili pepper chopped (or 1/2 tsp chili powder)
- 1-2 tsp red paprika powder
- 3 ½ tbsp tomato paste
- 14 oz (400 g) chopped tomatoes 1 can
- 7 oz (200 g) tomato passata ½ can
- 9 oz (255 g) kidney beans rinsed and drained weight of 1x14 oz can
- 1 ¾ cups (270 g) corn
- salt and pepper to taste
- a bit of sugar to taste
Side dishes (of choice)
- 8.5 oz (240 g) cooked rice
For garnish (optional)
- chili flakes
- sesame seeds
*Note: Be sure to check out the recipe video + step-by-step photos above!
- Peel and chop the garlic. Peel and dice the onions and carrots.
- Add the sunflower soy granules to a bowl. Pour the hot vegetable broth over it and let it soak for 5 minutes. Then drain in a colander and squeeze it out, reserving the excess broth. (If using tofu or another meat alternative, skip this step).
- Heat the oil in a pan. Add the onions, carrots, and sunflower or soy granules (or tofu*) and sauté for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Then add the garlic, chili, paprika powder, and tomato paste and sauté for another minute.
- Now add the tomatoes, reserved vegetable broth, kidney beans, corn, a little salt, and pepper, and let it simmer for about 20-25 minutes over low heat (so that the flavors can develop). Then taste and adjust seasonings as needed.
- Meanwhile, cook the rice according to the package instructions.
- Serve your chili with rice and garnish with chili flakes, sesame seeds, fresh parsley, and lime wedges on the side.
- Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, or freeze for longer storage. Then simply reheat in a pot on the stove or even in the microwave.
- You can use your favorite meat alternative (see blog post for suggestions). You can also add more beans, mushrooms, or more vegetables.
- This recipe should be naturally gluten-free if you are using a gluten-free meat alternative, side dish, and vegetable broth.
- For more ideas and tips, please read the blog post above.
- Nutritional information is calculated for 1 Serving of 4, including the rice.
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