*Don’t fret, fellow meat lovers! While this recipe uses Yves Veggie Ground Round, you could definitely swap it for classic ground beef or turkey!
I really am quite shocked that I would like, let alone make, a vegetarian chili, but trust me on this one: it’s delicious. It started when I was on vacation at a VERY old and VERY remote cabin a week or so ago; a large group of us spent a few nights there, and each night one of us would cook dinner for the group. It worked out wonderfully since there was always plenty of amazing food around and something new every night that I wouldn’t have necessarily made myself.
But I may have stressed out a bit about what meal I was going to cook. Picking a large meal to feed 8 hangry friends who’ve been drinking and hanging out in the sun all day might seem like an easy feat, but when one of said friends turns out to be a vegetarian, well that messes things up, considerably. Especially for someone like me, who makes things like this and this and this. Vegetarian? Me? Those two words rarely go together.
So here I was faced with the daunting task of figuring out out a meal:
a) big enough for a group of 8 very hungry, very impatient people,
b) easy & simple enough to make in a very old kitchen with limited tools and only a hotplate (the cabin was built decades ago and of course, the stove was broken!),
c) vegetarian, to accommodate the ONE person who is, and
d) hearty and yummy enough for the other seven of us who, as a general rule of thumb, eat twice as much meat just to spite the vegetarian. (we may or may not be terrible people)
I opted for a chili but was skeptical since the only good chilis I’ve had have had meat in them (obviously). I wanted the texture and heartiness of a chili with ground beef, but without the actual beef.
I thought I was out of luck until someone suggested I try this veggie ground round stuff. I bought it, and was still skeptical. I made the chili and was still skeptical. Then I tried it and I was sold. It’s actually really tasty and you can’t even tell that you’re eating a vegetarian chili. The ground round gives it that hearty texture, similar to ground beef, and if you saute and simmer it with enough spices and sauce, it’s really as good as the real thing.
So, to sum up, this is a hearty chili that will satisfy both the meat-lovers and the meat-haters. It’s got a bit of a Mexican flare due to the chili powder, jalapenos, peppers, and avocado salsa, and is best served with a big dollop of sour cream to counteract the spiciness. I will warn you, this makes a TON of chili, but I like making a big batch all at once so I can eat leftovers for the week or even freeze some. Feel free to halve the recipe if you like.
And if you like cornbread with your chili (who doesn’t!) Finn has wonderful recipe here!
|Vegetarian Chili with Avocado Salsa and Sour Cream|| |
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 small yellow onions, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
- 1 red pepper, chopped
- 1 yellow pepper, chopped
- 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
- 1 Tbsp chili powder
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp oregano
- ½ tsp red chili flakes (optional)
- ½ tsp salt
- ¼ cup tomato paste
- 680g Yves Veggie Ground Round (2 small packs)
- 2 cans black beans, rinsed and drained
- 2 28-oz cans of diced tomatoes
- 3 cups vegetable broth (or water)
- Avocado Salsa:
- 2 avocados, pitted and diced
- 2 Tbsp red onion, minced
- 1 Tbsp cilantro, chopped
- Juice from one lime
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- ½ tsp paprika
- Sour cream, to serve
- In a large, heavy-bottom pot over medium heat, saute onions in oil until softened, about 5 minutes. Add in garlic, jalapeno, peppers, carrots, chili powder, cumin, oregano, red chili flakes and salt; stir well and cook for another 5 minutes until peppers have softened.
- Stir in tomato paste, then crumble in the ground round. Add the beans, diced tomatoes and vegetable broth, stirring well. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer on low for 1½ to 2 hours until the vegetables have cooked down and the chili has thickened.
- To make the avocado salsa, combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Serve on top of a large bowl of chili with a big dollop of sour cream.