Beans from the bulk section of a grocery store are a staple for me, both for sprouting (plain sprouted garbanzos are on of my favorite snacks) and for making the occasional pressure cooker stew. I have a strict no-cans policy for food; cooking your own beans is cheaper, chemical-free, and provided you take a moment in the morning to soak them in water, not nearly as time consuming as people fear.
Chili is one of my favorite things to make in the pressure cooker. It’s under an hour start-to-finish, easy to customize for veggies and non-veggies alike, and super tasty. My parents gave me a huge bag of Frontier chili powder blend last time we visited, and my father said it made some of the best chili he’s had. I’ve used it in small doses in dishes lately, but nothing where it really got to shine; now that I’ve made chili out of it, I have to agree that it is pretty much the tastiest chili powder blend I’ve ever used. It has a deep, dark, rich flavor, thanks to the addition of both allspice and cloves, with a mild heat. Its ingredients can be viewed here.
Beyond the chili powder, my ingredient list for this is pretty standard. I think what makes it so flavorful without any meat or fake meat is the method of cooking all aromatics first and the additions of cider vinegar and chipotle.
Super Tasty Vegan Chili:
1 1/2 cups each kidney and pinto beans OR
1 cup each kidney, pinto, and black beans
1 7 oz glass jar tomato paste like bionaturae organic (please don’t use cans! Canned tomatoes are the worst canned food of all, because the acid in tomatoes leeches all the chemicals from the can into the food.)
1 32 oz glass jar pureed tomatoes, also bionaturae organic or other organic, jarred brand (if it is spring or summer, you can puree enough tomatoes to make 32 oz.)
32 oz water or vegetable broth
1 medium onion, 1/4 separated
6 large cloves garlic, 2 cloves separated
3 jalapenos, 1 separated
1/3 cup chili blend
2 tbls oregano
2 tbls cumin
1 tbls garlic salt, or to taste
1 tsp chipotle powder
2 tbls apple cider vinegar
2 tbls grapeseed or other neutral oil
1. Soak beans in the morning in plenty of water. Drain, rinse.
2. Chop jalapenos, onion, and garlic into desired sizes; I do a moderately fine dice, and like to use both green and red chiles:
3. Saute chiles, onion, and garlic in grapeseed oil until lightly colored.
4. Add all spices, saute until fragrant.
5. Deglaze pot with cider vinegar.
6. Add tomato paste, cook until it darkens.
7. Add beans, water or broth, and pureed tomatoes.
8. Put top on pressure cooker and let cook for 35-45 minutes once pressurized. Alternately, cook in regular pot on medium-high for 50-70 minutes, until beans are tender.
You can use this as a side dish, add to chili afterwards to ensure that your veggies don’t get overcooked, or add it straight in to the pot. If adding directly into chili, add during last 10 minutes in pressure cooker, or last 20 minutes in a regular pot.
1 head broccoli
1 bunch arugula
1 bunch collard greens
reserved portions of garlic, jalapeno, onion
2 tbls chili powder
1 tbls grapeseed oil
1 tsp garlic salt
This is what I had on hand this week- you can change it up to any veggies of your choosing! I’ve made it with spinach, bell peppers, cauliflower, etc.
1. Chop veggies into large bite size pieces.
2. Cook jalapeno, garlic, onion, till fragrant.
3. Add chili powder, saute briefly.
4. Add veggies, and stir frequently until tender-crisp, about ten minutes.
If you choose to instead cook the veggies into the chili, don’t reserve the garlic/onion/jalapenos, and add veggies raw.
Top with any chili toppings you prefer; I used almond cheddar cheese for mine.
It is thoroughly worth an hour of your time to have food you can enjoy for days and feel guilt-free about, knowing that you made it without convenience foods and chemicals. The difference in taste alone makes it worth it!