Hearty Tofu Chili is the ultimate comforting meal on chilly nights. Meaty and packed with plant protein and fiber!
All the meaty meatless thangs there ever were are right here in this very chili.
It's that time of year where we put everything in a pot and say "oh hi, here's dinner." And breakfast. And lunch. Everything becomes a one-pot-meal.
Because no one wants to do dishes when it's thirty degrees outside. We want to sip coffee with cinnamon and chow down on sweet gingerbread nothings while things cook in one pot. While dishes don't pile up. While the counters clean themselves.
I'm a huge tofu fan but never have I ever put the 'fu in chili. Why, you ask?
I have no answer for you there. Tofu is magical in the way that it takes on the flavor of pretty much anything. It's basically an edible sponge. A high-protein, tasteless sponge. How appetizing does that sound right now? Raise your hand if you're thrilled to whip up a batch of meatless tasteless sponge chili.
But seriously. The combination of tofu and mushrooms and beans galore makes this chili one for the chili books. It's meaty without trying to be meaty. It's savory, umami, bold. It would be insanely delish atop cornbread. Or like jalapeño cornbread studded with roasted corn slathered in something...buttery.
In order for tofu to not take on the stereotype of being a white mushy monster, you must press it. My go-to vehicle for pressing tofu is the EZ Tofu Press. It's been the best-selling tofu press on Amazon for the past three years, which is about how long I've been using it.
Essentially the press efficiently removes the water from the tofu in 15 minutes or less, leaving that nice firm tofu that's ready to absorb all the flavors and take on the world! If you've ever tried pressing tofu using millions of paper towels or heavy cans and books which then proceed to fall on your toes, you'll appreciate this press even more. It costs $19.99 on Amazon, is easy to clean, and is also dishwasher safe. Dreamy!
Tofu Chili Recipe
- Prep Time: 20 mins
- Cook Time: 1 hour 20 mins
- Total Time: 1 hour 50 mins
- Yield: 6 servings 1x
- Category: Main Meal
- Method: Stovetop
- Cuisine: American
- Diet: Vegan
HeartyTofu Chili is the ultimate comforting meal on chilly nights. Super meaty and packed with 15 grams of plant protein!
- 1 lb extra firm tofu, drained and pressed
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 8oz mushrooms, chopped
- 2 bell peppers, chopped
- 2 ½ tbsp chili powder
- 2 tsp cacao powder
- 2 tsp oregano
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp salt
- 2-15oz cans beans (I used red and white kidney beans), drained and rinsed
- 2-15oz cans diced fire-roasted tomatoes
- Drain and press tofu for at least 20 minutes.
- Heat olive oil in a medium pot/Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and sauté for 5 minutes. Add mushrooms and peppers and sauté for another 5 minutes.e
- Crumble tofu and add to pot with spices. Sauté for another 7-10 minutes.
- Add beans and tomatoes, stirring to combine. Bring mixture to a boil and then reduce heat to low and simmer (covered) for about an hour, or until flavors have melded together.
Keywords: vegan tofu chili
Sounds amazing and looking forward to cooking it. Can it be frozen or stored in fridge for a few days?
Alexis Joseph says
Yes, either works great!
This is one of my favorite recipes! Even people who claim they “hate” mushrooms end up loving it! We love seasoning so most of the time I double the seasoning and add an extra can of of beans (whatever I have in the cupboard). Would give 6 stars if I could! ❤️
Marie Burris says
A tofu press?!?!?! Who knew?? There goes another million dollar idea I missed out on inventing. LOL I have printed off the tofu mushroom chili recipe and plan to venture into the tofu chili waters next week. BTW, I've recently made your "Yummiest Vegetable Soup" recipe and I have to agree. It truly was absolutely yummy. I've never tasted a vegetable soup so flavorful, and I've tried so many. Thank you for all you do and thanks for your website! It's a lifesaver!
S Baxley says
I just purchased the EZ Tofu Press on Amazon. I will be making the Vegan Mushroom Tofu Chili.
I made this for dinner and it was delicious! Thanks for the great recipe!
YAY so happy you loved it! Keep cookin' 🙂
Made this for dinner and it was delicious! Thanks for the great recipe
Tara A. says
Great recipe!! Thank you for sharing, it's delish! I added black beans instead of white kidney, some jalapeño, paprika, and some corn. Soooo yum.
Oh sounds DELICIOUS!
Love this recipe!! I would like a Tofu press because I am currently in transition of becoming a Vegan. I love to cook, but have some challenges making Tofu that have made me feel discouraged in going Vegan. The Tofu press will make cooking easier, and I'll feel motivated to make so many recipes including this amazing chili. I love mushrooms!
Thank you in advance for your consideration. Whoever gets it, will be lucky and happy holidays!!!
I like to make cashew- tofu cream to spread on toast. I love to make this chili too!
As so many others have said, I would totally make this recipe with the tofu press! I also like to bake tofu - and it never seems to get dry enough, after pressing with plates and cans.
I made this tonight and followed the recipe exactly. I found it pretty bland and watery.
I WOULD SO MAKE THAT TOFU CHILI!
I would love to make this tofu chili. I love chili and it would be perfect to make this for winter!
i'd make a huge batch of curry and stir fry some tofu to pop in it!
Jillian Too says
I'd either make a veggie tofu stir-fry or an Italian white bean tofu stew.
There are so many recipes to choose from it's hard to pick just one. =) Soups and salads are just some!
Lydia Claire says
For pretty much every recipe I use tofu in unless it's silken tofu!
I´d make ¨Ma Po Tofu¨, of course. What other dish could highlight the awesomeness of tofu. Fried tofu, garlic, spicy bean paste, sriracha, yummers. And then, maybe a tofu bacon wrap.... kind of like a BLT without the bread. Tofu press, thatś brilliant!
I would make tofu "wings" and tons of stir fry!
I would probably make some kind of a stir-fry!
Not really sure what I'd make, as I've never made tofu before. But I think I'd try out some tofu-centric Chinese food!
Yummmm!!!! I always make sweet potato black bean--but this one is a must!! I need a little variety and it looks amazing! And the tofu press?! Something I've had intended to buy ages ago and forgot about. Love it!
paige c says
I would love to have a tofu press, I can never seem to get all the water out when making stir fry or any other tofu dishes
I've also never used tofu in chili, but I have used tempeh. This recipe looks like a good use for my next tofu purchase. I also love to make smoky maple baked tofu, which is a recipe from the Thug Kitchen cookbook. I always use a million and five paper towels to press my tofu, so it'd be nice to have this tofu press instead.
Emilie @ Emilie Eats says
Me me me!?? A tofu press would make a great addition in my humble college apartment kitchen! I've been cooking with toy more lately because I finally found a way to cook it where it doesn't taste like a nasty sponge. I love mixed in with a soy-ginger marinade, baking it, and then putting it over vegetable noodles (like turnip noodles!) with edamame, avocado, sauteed kale, and a little soy sauce. So delicious!
Beverley @ sweaty&fit says
hahahah. 'a high protein tasteless sponge.'
that is EXACTLY what tofu is. I am convinced tho!! I will definitely try it in my chili next time. Great recipe 🙂
I love a good tofu stir fry! Hahaha oh i know the paper towel struggles far too well. A tofu press would be awesome!
Sarah @ Making Thyme for Health says
Tasteless sponge chili sounds fantabulous to me!! I don't have a tofu press but I've wanted one for a while now. I hate having to use dish towels and stack books every time I cook it!
Courtney Glausi says
I've been wanting a tofu press so badly! I make baked tofu for an easy dinner often, but the tofu pressing is such a hassle and makes the easy dinner not so easy! I'd LOVE to try this chili recipe!! Meat in chili always seems like overkill to me, so the tofu option sounds like an amazing way to get in lots of protein without the meat. Thanks for the recipe 🙂 I'll let you know soon how I like it!
What a cool gadget. I didn't even know those existed. I have a tower that I build whenever I press my tofu and it involves two plates, a couple cookbooks and my heaviest cutting board. Anyway, I would use it to make Tofu Pad Thai. Yum
I would use it to make your crispy tofu fingers! Although this chili looks like a good place to start with my anti-tofu husband ?
I think I would revisit every tofu recipe I've ever made, to be honest! This would be a game changer for marinating and soaking up optimal flavor!
Lindsay Amerman says
If I got this awesome EZ Tofu Press, I would use it when I make tofu stir fry constantly! I love to make all different veggie stir fries with tofu during the week and having this tofu press would definitely save me time when I get home late from work!
Hi Lindsay, you're the winner! Please email your address to email@example.com. Thanks!
Dieititan Jess says
So many good tofu recipes to make-but ones of my favs is your ricotta tofu lasagna (meat eating hubs LOVED it!) If it don't win I need to add a tofu press to my Christmas list!
I've been tweaking a salad with quinoa, butternut squash, cranberries, spinach, and a number of other things, but it's amazing with honey-glazed baked tofu, and baked tofu is five million times better with a tofu press. I've been wanting one of these for ages!
Janet Novak says
Well, I would make this mushroom tofu chili, of course! ? It looks fabulous!
A tofu press? Amazing! I always have a hard time cooking tofu I place a ton of things on top of it to try and drain it, but it never seems to work well...this could change my feelings towards prepping with tofu! I have a couple recipes I would try out...one Buffalo Tofu Bites and second this mushroom tofu chili. Followed by many more if cooking with tofu became easier!! 🙂
Well if I had an EZ Tofu press I would first give this recipe a whirl, it sounds amazing! Then I would make some sort of curry tofu with veggies, indian food is my latest obsession! I became a vegetarian about 9 months ago and I have loved experimenting with tofu in my cooking. Keep the recipes coming 🙂
What a novel invention. I've been using the dish on top of numerous paper towels since I started eating tofu. I would make this recipe with the tofu press! Going to try it out for Thanksgiving and I'm sure will want to make it again.
I would love to try Baked Spaghetti with Kale, Mushrooms, and Tofu Ricotta!! And, of course, the tofu press would make this and so many other recipes MUCH easier to tackle!!
Sharon Gilbert says
I would love to have this press-my cast iron skillet just hit the floor while I was using to press tofu for this chili recipe. My go-to recipe for tofu is an easy one I've adapted from Sunset magazine. It's called Curried Lentils with Paneer, which I replaced with cubed extra firm tofu.
I love tofu with some kind of peanut sauce over rice and lots of veggies
Umm I would definitely make this chili with a tofu press! I'm drooling over the pictures!! I actually can't believe I didn't even know such a thing existed!
Alicia Branam says
I love baked tofu and I make lots of different kinds - teriyaki, BBQ, Sirracha, curry, all so good! Great snacking item and my kids love to take it in their lunches too! My plates are getting tired as doubling as a tofu press 😉
Ashley Rachal, MS, RD, LDN says
I have a great recipe for Chili Lime Tofu "Steaks" that I would make. I recommend getting a tofu press to all of my vegetarian/vegan patients and yet, somehow I don't have one myself! I'm using the old tried-and-true method of stacking several heavy plates on top of mounds of paper towels. This tofu press definitely seems like a more convenient (not to mention safer for my dishes) option! And this chili recipe looks fantastic! Can't wait to try it 🙂
I would love to have a tofu press because I can totally relate to stacking multiple items on top of the tofu to only have them fall all over the floor!