Mother Earth Living

Kitchen Table: Crockpot Vegetarian Chili

By The Herb Companion staff
February/March 1996
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Serves 8 to 10


• 1/4 cup olive oil
• 1/3 cup tamari soy sauce
• 2 teaspoons chili powder
• 1 tablespoon cumin
• 1 teaspoon ground cardamom


• 1 pound tofu, cut into 3/4 -inch cubes
• 1 large onion, diced
• 1 teaspoon minced garlic
• 4 tablespoons olive oil
• 1/2 teaspoon mustard seed
• 1 large can red kidney beans, drained and liquid reserved
• 1 large can black beans, drained and liquid reserved
• 1 20-ounce can crushed plum tomatoes
• 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
• 2 tablespoon basil
• 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1. Mix the marinade ingredients and gently pour over the tofu until all the cubes are coated. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, sauté the onion and garlic in the olive oil until the vegetables are translucent. Add the mustard seeds.

2. Remove the tofu from the marinade with a slotted spoon and add it to the skillet. Sauté until the tofu is tawny and just sticks to the pan, about 10 minutes, turning with a spatula until all sides are brown.

3. In a slow cooker, combine the marinade, tofu-onion mixture, beans, tomatoes, cilantro, basil, cayenne, and enough bean liquid to just cover the ingredients. Cook on low setting at least 6 hours. Remove the lid to thicken the liquid if desired.

—David George, Wheaton, Maryland 

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