Black and White Vegetarian Chili Recipe 14 comments

I have made this chili twice–once with ancho chiles and once with chili powder.

Black and White Vegetarian Chili by Being A Wordsmith

I learned that the key to making Vegetarian Chilinot a bean and vegetable stewis adding replacements for the different ways in which meat adds depth and flavor. Hence the ingredients soy sauce, dried shiitake mushrooms, bulgur, and tomatoes below. Some people grind walnuts and add them. This is how I rigged mine.

Black and White Vegetarian Chili (Rigged)

  •  Salt
  • 1/2 pound dried navy beans, rinsed
  • 1/2 pound dried black beans, rinsed
  • ***2 dried or fresh ancho chiles OR 1/4 cup chili powder
  • 1/2 ounce dried shiitake mushrooms, chopped coarse
  • 4 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained with juice reserved
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 – 2 jalapeño chiles, stemmed and coarsely chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 pounds onions, chopped fine
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 7 cups water
  • 2/3 cup medium-grind bulgur
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

***If using chili powder instead of chiles, grind the shiitakes and oregano from step 2 with 1⁄4 cup of chili powder and add mixture in step 4.


1. Bring 4 quarts water, 3 tablespoons salt, and beans to boil in large Dutch oven (cast iron pot) over high heat. Remove pot from heat, cover, and let stand for 1 hour. Drain beans and rinse well. Wipe out pot with paper towels and set aside for later.
2. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 300 degrees. Arrange chiles on rimmed baking sheet and toast until fragrant and puffed, about 8 minutes. Transfer to plate and let cool, about 5 minutes. Stem and seed chiles. Grind toasted chiles, mushrooms, and oregano in spice grinder or similar method.
3. Process drained tomatoes, tomato paste, jalapeño(s), garlic, and soy sauce in blender for about 45 seconds.
4. Heat oil in now-empty Dutch oven (cast iron pot) over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add onions and 1- 1/4 teaspoons salt; cook, stirring occasionally until onions begin to brown for 8 to 10 minutes. Lower heat to medium and add ground chile/chili powder mixture and cumin; cook, stirring constantly until fragrant for about 1 minute. Add rinsed beans and water and bring to a boil. Cover pot, transfer to oven (still 300 degrees F), and cook for 45 minutes.


5. Remove pot from oven. Stir in bulgur, tomato mixture, and reserved tomato juice. Cover pot and return to oven. Cook until beans are fully tender, about 2 hours.
6. Remove pot from oven, stir chili well, and let stand uncovered for 20 minutes. Stir in cilantro. Serve the chili with lime wedges, shredded cheddar cheese, and sour cream. If desired, add diced avocado and chopped red onion.

Serves 6 to 8

If interested in more of my Rigged Recipes, click here.

Have you ever eaten or made vegetarian chili?
Have you eaten or used bulgur in a dish?
Do you like your chili spicy or mild?

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14 thoughts on “Black and White Vegetarian Chili Recipe

  • Sonya

    This looks yummy! I love a good vegetarian chili and I’ve never tried a recipe like this one, so I will happy to try this one out. I’ll let you know how I like it, I’m sure it will taste good.

    • beingawordsmith Post author

      My husband suggested this recipe to me and I was hesitant at first. But it turned out great. If you are a meat eater, you will never miss the meat. Thank you, Sonya!

  • kristink25

    This looks delicious, and such a variety of ingredients!

    Thanks for sharing at Wine'd Down Wednesday. I am pinning this onto our new WDW Pinterest board. Hope to see you back again next week!
    My recent post Shrimp and Broccoli Curry with Quinoa and Brown Rice

  • Trinity

    When I started making vegetarian chili, I was surprised at how good it tastes. It is all about the flavor. I really like the way you used dried beans. I usually use the vegetarian canned beans.
    My recent post Doing You WELL Wednesday

  • dishofdailylife

    Love new chili recipes!! We had turkey and white bean chili tonight…totally rigged recipe…but a hit! Too bad I didn't measure anything…I'll never be able to duplicate it exactly.
    My recent post The Mother of All Pranks

    • BeingAWordsmith

      Rigging is what it's all about, Michelle. I am so much more comfortable these days in the kitchen. My grandmother is famous for “not being able to tell” family members what she puts in her gumbo, red beans, or crawfish bisque. She claims she doesn't remember the recipes and that it's just a little bit of this and little bit of that. It's hysterical, but her food is amazing.
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  • prowessandpearls

    Hey Kim! On a dreary day like today your chilli sounds delicious! That's our “go to” dish around here during the fall/wintertime. 🙂 Nope, I've never eaten vegetarian chili, gotta have my meat, lol! As far as the temp of my chilli…I'm a spicy kinda girl! 🙂 Thanks for sharing…have a great week!
    My recent post Mastering YOU Monday…time for a check-up ladies!

    • BeingAWordsmith

      Sorry it's dreary in your neck of the woods, Michell. After lots of rain, Tropical Storm Karen passed us and we got a cold front and sunny weather. Actually Karen may have made it your way. 🙁 I'm definitely a meat eater, but you will not miss the meat in this dish. Thanks for stopping by.
      My recent post Scandal Season 3 Scoop and Spoiler Alerts

  • rxfitnesslady

    Did I miss something? You're not a vegetarian are you hun? If you are, I've totally been missing that! I love chili, I'm sure I'd like it this way too.

    • BeingAWordsmith

      NO, MA'AM! I am not a vegetarian. Just can't say no to steak and hamburgers. And bacon! Hubby and I have just been eating healthier. You'll never even realize that this chili has no meat in it.
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