Vegetarian Chilli Con Carne

Vegetarian Chilli Con Carne - or Chilli Sin Carne to be Precise

It was ages ago when I cooked Chilli Con Carne for the first time. And it was so easy back then! At first, I fried some beef. Next, I opened a pack of seasoning mix, added it along with tomatoes and red beans and done! Yes, however much I am embarrassed to admit to it now, I have to make this confession. In the past, I used a shop-bought mix to make that dish. And there is something even more embarrassing. When that ready to prepare packet wasn’t available anymore... I stopped cooking Chilli Con Carne. It took me some time to realize I could make it myself from scratch and it would taste equally good or even better.  And furthermore - I would exactly know what was in it. When I started preparing proper Chilli Con Carne, it soon became one of our family's favourites. So when my daughter decided to go on a plant-based diet, I knew I had to face another challenge. I had to cook a meal that is based on meat without the meat. And obviously, I had to make it taste like a real thing.

Vegetarian Chilli Con Carne Recipe - How to Achieve the Authentic Flavour

Finding a replacement for meat wasn't that difficult. Just as it was in case of vegetarian Bolognese Sauce, I used mushrooms. In my opinion, it is quite easy to achieve a texture and look of fried minced meat when you use thinly chopped champignons instead. But I still had to get the same taste of the Vegetarian Chili Con Carne as we knew from the meaty version. I decided to take the easiest route and to use for my Veggie Chilli Con Carne, the same ingredients and spices as I did for the original dish. I think this strategy worked incredibly well. There were quite a few people who couldn't believe it was indeed Vegetarian Chilli Con Carne. P.S. If you would like to have a Vegan Chili Con Carne, either omit the sour cream or replace it with a vegan equivalent. [embed][/embed]

Vegetarian Chilli Con Carne (vegetarian/vegan)

Chilli Con Carne for vegans and vegetarians: made with mushrooms instead of meat, with a bit of chocolate for the great taste.
Servings people
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes


To serve:


  1. Heat the olive oil in a big frying pan; add the onions and garlic, sweat on a medium heat for 5 minutes.
  2. Add the cumin and chilli, fry for a minute.
  3. Add the mushrooms and fry for 3-5 minutes.
  4. Add chopped tomatoes, passata, salt and fry for 10-15 minutes till the sauce thickens.
  5. Add chocolate, red beans and adjust the seasoning. Serve on a bed of cooked rice with a dollop of sour cream and grated cheese on top.
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Agnieszka Weiner

Hi, I am Agnieszka, and I am passionate about delicious but healthy food. Many healthy dishes are bland and uninteresting. I reject this. So I created my blog Tastes of Health to share my yummy recipes for healthier (often plant-based and gluten-free) versions of family favourites. I look forward to receiving your feedback after you try them.

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