Vegan Lentil Chili

I had a lentil chili recipe I had been using for years. Decades, in fact. So when we invited my new vegan friend and her husband over for Superbowl Sunday, I dug through my recipe binder, thinking this was the perfect thing to serve. But my fantastic recipe was GONE. I couldn't believe I had culled this tried and true recipe during my fanatic purging stage before moving to Florida! Drats!

I scrolled through a bunch of recipes online. Nothing sounded anywhere near as delicious as the recipe I remembered. So I decided to wing it.

The first problem was finding the lentils. You wouldn't think something as basic as lentils would be hard to find, but I normally shop at Aldi. No lentils at Aldi. So we searched through Costco. Nope, no lentils there. Of course Walmart came through for us. Walmart has literally everything in the universe.

Lentils make up the base for this chili, but I also add at least 2 different kinds of beans. You can switch up the beans and use whatever you have on hand, or whatever you prefer. I like a colorful chili, so I used both red and yellow bell peppers, in addition to carrots and jalapenos. You could also throw in some frozen corn. I used a can of beer instead of water in order to keep the dish completely vegan. If you don't care about this, you can use chicken or beef broth. Vegetable broth would work, too.

I chose to cook the chili in the crockpot. You can also do this on the stovetop, if you prefer, and reduce the cooking time to about an hour. Taste the lentils to make sure they're cooked all the way through.


2-3 TB coconut oil
1 large sweet onion, chopped
3 large jalapenos, chopped (I remove the seeds, but you don't have to.)
1/2 cup red bell pepper, chopped
1/2 cup yellow bell pepper, chopped
1 cup carrots, sliced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 TB chili powder
1 teas. salt
1 teas. cumin
1 teas. dried oregano or Italian seasoning
1 cup lentils (brown)
14 oz. diced tomatoes
12 oz. beer (I used light beer.)
15 oz. black beans
15 oz. garbanzo beans

In a heavy saucepan, melt oil and saute the veggies for a few minutes, until onions are wilted and just beginning to brown. Add spices and cook for a couple more minutes. Dump veggies into the crockpot and add the lentils, tomatoes, and beer. Cook on HIGH for about 3 hours. Add beans. Cook another 15 minutes. Serve chili with salsa and guacamole, or sliced avocado, or any other toppings you desire. Makes plenty for 6 hungry people.