This Incredible Vegan Chili Recipe Taught Me How To Improvise in the Kitchen

You’re busy, I’m busy, we’re all busy! Cooking every night can get a little exhausting, but meal prep can be daunting when you’re first getting into it. Luckily, sometimes you can just throw a bunch of stuff in a pot, let it cook for a few hours, and boom, you have a week’s worth of robust vegan chili. And I LOVE a good chili! It’s customizable, the whole family totally digs it, and it’s super rich in vitamins, antioxidants, and protein. Now be warned: you may not have everything on the ingredients list and to that I say, WHO CARES! I don’t give a fuck, and neither should you. I didn’t have the correct spices or beans, and this dish turned out to be absolutely incredible. So, just use what ya have and remember that a little improvising can go a long way (and can come with some surprisingly great results). Check out this awesome recipe (well, let’s look at this as more of a flexible guideline) for a big ‘ol pot of vegan chili. 

Laura Clery vegetables


  • Half cup neutral oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 medium carrots, chopped
  • 4 bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 bunch of celery (8-9 medium-sized stalks), chopped
  • 3 jalapeno peppers, chopped (We like it spicy, but this is optional.)
  • Garlic to taste, chopped (4 cloves is a good base.)
  • 2 jars of tomato sauce (We used Farm to Fork tomato basil sauce.)
  • 2 cans of black beans (But any beans will do. I used chickpeas and cannellini beans. Remember, WHO CARES!)
  • 1 28 oz. can of diced tomato
  • 1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. plus 1 tsp. oregano
  • 1 Tbsp. coriander
  • 2 Tbsp. cumin
  • 2 Tbsp. chili powder (I used Balti Curry seasoning from Whole Foods because I was out of cumin and chili powder.)
  • Sea salt to taste
  • Vegan cheddar cheese

Chili powder

Balti Curry


  • Add oil into a large pot
  • After heating the oil, add in the onion and cook on medium-high until they’re soft and translucent
  • Add carrots, celery, and garlic and cook for five minutes
  • Add bell pepper and cook five-ten minutes
  • Add oregano, coriander, cumin, and chili powder (or whatever spices you’re using), and cook for five minutes.
  • Add tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, and beans. Let simmer for at least an hour.
  • Mix cilantro and jalapeno (if you like it spicy, wink) into the chili and cook for five minutes or less
  • Salt to taste
  • Sprinkle fresh cilantro and vegan cheddar cheese on top right before serving!


There you have it! Just add all your favorite toppings and enjoy!

Written by: Laura Clery