Smoky Chipotle Tempeh Chili

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You may have noticed that I make a lot of chili. I love chili. I get this from my Dad. I consider him to be the expert among all experts in chili making. Growing up in Central New York, you need a good, hearty chili on a weekly basis just to keep you warm in the winter. My Dad is a hunter and every year has a group of friends staying at our house for hunting season. He makes crockpots of chili, a little different every time, but usually fills it with venison and sausage and a lot of heat.  The first time I called him for his recipe I recall him saying “you know some onions, peppers, venison…and a sh*tload of chili powder…” I think that’s one of the great things about chili- you can make it different every single time and it is always delicious. This version is very different from ones I’ve made in the past. This is the first time I’ve used chipotles and adobo as well as the first time I’ve used tempeh. It turned out really great. It’s spicy, smoky and is SURE to warm you on a cold day. If you don’t like a lot of heat, cut back on the jalapeno and chipotle- but where’s the fun in that?


1 Yellow onion
1 Green bell pepper (seeds and veins removed)
1 Jalapeno pepper (seeds and veins removed)
1 Stalk of celery
4 Cloves garlic
3 Chipotle peppers in Adobo sauce
1 Can dark red kidney beans
1 15 oz Can whole peeled San Marzano tomatoes
2 Cups tempeh, ground
1/2 bottle of beer (I used an Drake’s IPA)
1 Cup vegetable broth
1/2 Cup water
2 TBSP Chili Powder
1/4 Tsp. Coriander
1/8 Tsp. Cayenne
1 Bay leaf
1 Tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Pepper
1 Tbsp Olive oil
Sour Cream or Toffuti and chives for garnish (optional)

Dice the onion, celery and peppers and mince the garlic. Heat olive oil in a very large pot on medium heat. Add the onion, celery, peppers and garlic and saute about 5-7 minutes.

Remove the whole canned tomatoes and chop, reserving the liquid. Add the tomatoes and liquid to the onion and pepper mixture. Chop the chipotle peppers and add them along with about 3 TBSP of the adobo sauce.

Strain the kidney beans and add to the pot. Add the beer, tempeh, water, broth, spices and bay leaf. Cover and simmer on low, about an hour.

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