What comes to mind when you think of Chili? Comfort Food, right? Chili has that wonderful, comfort food ability to make you feel that all is right with the world! It’s warm, it’s filling, and most of us grew up eating it, so there’s that home cooked meal – memory thing built into your thoughts on chili! That’s why, when I decided to make a post about chili, I decided to do a classic chili. Sure, we could get fancy and add all kind of new fangled chili ingredients, like lentils, and mangos or something, but when it comes to chili, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it! Am I right? Let’s go with yes, at least for the duration of this post… 🙂 This recipe is not spicy either, so you can add your own heat when you’re cooking it, or if you have kiddos at the table, you can let each person spice it to their liking. I like Frank’s Red Hot Sauce with mine, and the hubby goes Tabasco or some kind of local, artisan hot sauce, he’s a bit of a connoisseur of hot hot sauces! My boys like it just as is. Another great thing about chili is that it is so versatile. I’m talking in a bowl, on top of chips with melted cheese, on a baked potato, on a veggie dog, you know where I’m going with this right? Yes! Tell me what you like to eat chili on or with, so we can all get inspired together!!
As you can see from the photos, I made some yummy (vegan/GF) cornbread with this batch! Recipe here! It takes just a few minutes to whip up, and you will be so glad you did!
To make this chili recipe a classic chili, I used all of the usual chili ingredients, and I substituted TSP (Organic Textured Soy Protein by Bob’s Red Mill). It absorbs the flavor of the broth and has a meaty texture when cooked. You can also use prepared, ground veggie burger crumbles, but this is cheaper, and you can keep it on hand for other recipes too.
I cooked the whole thing in my Instant Pot pressure cooker, but I’ve also done it many times on the stove top, so you can pick which one works for you. The benefit of doing it in an Instant Pot or other pressure cooker, is that it’s done very quickly, with a simmered all day taste! You could also use this recipe in a slow cooker or with the slow cooker feature on the Instant Pot. So let’s talk about how easy this recipe is for just a minute! We’re talking one pot guys!
You can saute the onions and garlic, right there in the pressure cooker, or your pot. Add tomato juice, and puree. I puree the onions and garlic into the juice because it helps to thicken the broth, and also (main reason) because my husband is onion phobic! Fun food fact… there’s actually a name for this, but it mainly pertains to the fear of the scent of things in the onion family. It’s called ‘Alliumphobia’. Just thought I’d pass that info along. (?!) He doesn’t actually fear the scent, it’s more of a texture thing, so he doesn’t mind if they’re in there, as long as they’re blended up, and he would also prefer not to know. The things we do for the people we love… Good thing he’s worth it! I love him! 🙂
This is a great dish to make if you are having a party, because you can keep it warm in a slow cooker, Instant Pot, or a heavy duty Dutch oven, and guests can serve themselves.
And the last thing that I need to tell you about this recipe is that you can freeze it! If this batch is too big for you, then you can either cut it in half, or freeze some of this, for on the spot, chili craving comfort food goodness! My grandparents used to make “chili bricks” for us when we were little. For a time, my family was my two little brothers, myself and my dad. We would visit my grandparents for the weekend, and when my dad came to get us, they went to work, like two Angels, packing up all kinds of sandwiches for the drive home, and chili bricks for easy meals. To make a chili brick, just line a loaf pan with parchment paper, with enough sticking out to cover the top. Pour cooled chili in, almost to the top of the pan. Pop in the freezer until thoroughly frozen. After it’s frozen, remove it from the loaf pan, and wrap in parchment paper and then foil. Place in a Ziploc bag and return to freezer. When you are ready for it, just put it in a pot over low to medium heat, with the lid on, stirring occasionally, and bring it to temperature. Don’t forget the cornbread!
- 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
- 1 Large White Onion, diced
- 5 Cloves Fresh Garlic, minced
- 6 Cups tomato juice
- 1 C water
- 1 Tbsp. + 1 tsp. Chili Powder
- 1 t garlic powder
- ½ t cumin
- 1 t pink or sea salt
- dash of pepper
- 2 C TVP (see blog post for more info)
- 7 Cups hydrated kidney beans (canned or presoaked)
- 2 Cans diced tomatoes
- In a large pot (at least 6 Qt), or Instant Pot, saute onion until softened and slightly translucent. Add minced garlic and saute for another minute. Remove from heat. Add tomato juice and spices. Using and immersion blender, puree the onions and garlic, until smooth and juice is more like a sauce.
- Next, add the rest of the ingredients.
- If cooking in an Instant Pot, secure lid and press Soup button. Use the timer keys to set it for 7 minutes. Come back when it's done - use time to make cornbread! (Recipe here!)
- If cooking on a stove top, bring chili to a boil, and then reduce heat. Allow chili to simmer for about 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Chili is done when beans are very tender, and flavors are fully blended.
- Serve with choice of hot sauce if you like it with heat.
P.S.- You need canned or pre-soaked kidney beans for this recipe. You can speed up the soaking process by doing the beans in the Instant Pot. Add 4 cups of water and 1 tsp of salt for each cup of dried beans. In this case, you’ll need 3 cups of dried beans. Whether you use dried beans and precook them in the Instant Pot, or canned beans, make sure you save the liquid that results. This liquid is called aquafaba, and can be used to replace eggs in recipes! See my recipe for Melt in Your Mouth Cornbread where I used aquafaba instead of eggs, with great results! Feel free to comment or email if you have questions!
P.S.S. If you are looking for another Instant Pot recipe, check out my Hearty Broccoli Soup recipe!
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