Finally, a vegetarian chili for true chili lovers. With chipotle sausages, four kinds of chili powder, beer, coffee and chocolate, this is a truly intense chili. It has an edge of bitterness, a strong but not aggressive spiciness and a very subtle touch of sweetness. It’s well worth searching out the ancho and New Mexico chili powders, as they add an authentic chili flavor.
I’m recommending Field Roast sausages here – this is not an endorsement, but they are the only brand that has the right consistency for this chili!
- 1¾ cups dried pinto beans, soaked overnight
- 2 links Field Roast chipotle vegetarian sausages, crumbled
- 1 teaspoon + 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil or organic canola oil
- 1 large green bell pepper diced
- 1 large yellow or white onion, diced
- 3 large cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons ancho chile powder
- 2 tablespoons hot or mild New Mexico chile powder
- 2 teaspoons chipotle powder
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons ground coriander
- 1½ teaspoons dried Mexican oregano
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 3 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 26-oz carton Pomi chopped tomatoes* (or substitute canned crushed tomatoes)
- 12-ounce bottle chocolate stout beer
- 1 tablespoon instant espresso powder
- 2 teaspoons molasses (or substitute brown sugar)
- 1½ ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
- 1 tablespoon freshly-squeezed lime juice
- Cooked brown rice (optional)
- Toppings: Avocado, red onions, cilantro, soy yogurt or soy sour cream
- Drain the soaked beans, then place in a large saucepan and cover well with fresh cold water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until tender, about 1 hour, adding water as necessary. Let them sit until you’re ready to use them, then drain, reserving the cooking liquid.
- Heat a teaspoon of oil on medium-high heat in a large, heavy-bottomed pot. Add the crumbled vegetarian sausages and cook for 3 minutes, stirring a few times (it will stick; it’s ok). Remove to a plate.
- Heat the remaining oil on medium heat in the same pot. Add the onions, garlic and peppers. Cook for 8 minutes, stirring frequently and scraping the bottom of the pot to incorporate the sausage remnants that stuck to the pan. Add the tomato paste, chili powders, cumin, coriander, oregano, salt and pepper. Cook for 3-4 minutes, stirring frequently.
- Add the tomatoes, beer, espresso powder and brown sugar or molasses. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Add the reserved vegetarian sausage and beans and simmer very gently for 10 minutes. If the chili seems much too thick, add a little of the bean cooking liquid. Stir in chocolate and lime and turn off the heat.
- Serve on cooked brown rice with your toppings of choice, or refrigerate and serve the next day, when it’s even better.
* I now recommend Pomi tomatoes in tetra packs instead of canned, because of the BPA.