This vegan chili recipe is easy, tasty and hearty. Often, vegan chili consists of beans and a few vegetables, like green peppers, onions, and sometimes, corn. I like how this vegan chili recipe brings an additional punch of heartiness with meaty chunks of seitan and chewy wheat berries. These two ingredients not only amp up the chili’s texture, but also bring additional protein and fiber. It’s one delicious, satisfying meal!
A few notes..
Plan to make the wheat berries for the recipe ahead of time. They need ~60 minutes to boil. If you soak the grains overnight, they cook up in 30 minutes and are a bit softer.
You can totally make this recipe with a regular can of diced tomatoes. The canned fire roasted tomatoes bring something special, but this will still be a pretty good bowl of chili without them.
Hearty Seitan and Wheat Berry Chili
1 small onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 tsp ground cumin
½ tsp smoked paprika
1 Tbsp chili powder
2 bay leaves
2 tsp hot sauce
½ cup chopped red pepper
½ cup frozen sweet corn
2 cups pinquito beans (OR 15.5 ounce can of pinto beans, drained and rinsed)
1 cup cooked winter wheat berries (see note above)
15 ounce can of tomato sauce
14 ounce can of fire roasted tomatoes
1 ½ cups of water
1 cube of fake beef bouillon (I like Edward & Sons Not-Beef Bouillon Cubes) (OR 1 tsp red miso)
Sliced fresh avocado, optional
1. In a large, heavy pot or dutch oven, add onions, garlic, olive oil and a pinch of salt. Sauté for ~7 minutes over medium-low heat, then add cumin, smoked paprika, chili powder, and bay leaves. Sauté for another minute or 2, and then, add hot sauce, red pepper, sweet corn and seitan. Move it around in the bottom of the pot for about 3-5 minutes over medium-low heat.
2. Add the beans, cooked wheat berries, tomato sauce, fire roasted tomatoes, water and bouillon (or miso). Bring to a boil, and then, cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes.
3. Taste and adjust seasonings, if needed (salt? more hot sauce?), and serve with sliced fresh avocado on top or your favorite chili toppings.