The best vegan chili is a meatless, gluten free, and low carb meal. By preparing the recipe in a crockpot, it makes it an ideal choice for busy weeknights. It’s also freezer-friendly and perfect for meal prep!
This meatless chili has plenty of vegetables, including onions, green peppers, and mushrooms, making it a great alternative to regular chili. Thanks to the addition of walnuts, it is also a good source of plant-based Omega-3 fatty acids.
Is this vegan crockpot chili recipe low carb?
The recipe uses walnuts as a meat substitute instead of legumes like lentils or beans. Therefore, this chili has a lot less carbs than other vegetarian chili recipes.
A 1-ounce (28 grams) serving of walnuts provides 4 grams of protein but has just 2 net carbs.
Are there other protein options for meatless chili?
To keep this vegan chili low carb and gluten-free, I use walnuts as a meat substitute, but there are several other protein options available. Keep in mind that many of these options may not be appropriate for a low carb diet.
- Lentils: This is a popular choice for many people when making meatless chili. While lentils are high in both protein and fiber, they are not the best option if you are looking for a low carb chili. To keep the carbs at their lowest, choose whole green lentils over the red split variety.
- Tofu: Opt for a firmer tofu since the softer ones will break apart too easily during cooking.
- Other nuts: Pecans are an excellent alternative for the walnuts.
- Quinoa can be an option for more active people on a low carb diet. But it's much too high in carbs for those on keto.
- Chickpeas have about 6 grams of net carbs per tablespoon. Therefore, it's best to leave them out unless your on a more liberal low carb plan.
How long will it keep in the refrigerator?
This vegan chili will keep well in the refrigerator for up to three days if kept in a covered container. If you don’t think it will be eaten during that time, then it’s better to freeze the leftovers.
To freeze: Divide the leftover chili into single or family-sized servings in airtight containers or heavy-duty freezer bags. If you are using freezer bags, you can flatten the bags so that they take up less space in your freezer.
Frozen cooked chili will keep well in the freezer for up to three months.
What’s the best way to reheat frozen chili?
To enjoy the chili you’ve previously frozen, it must first be thawed, using one of two methods:
- Place the frozen chili in the refrigerator and let it thaw overnight. Or, leave it in the refrigerator for up to two days before reheating.
- You can also thaw chili in a microwave, using the defrost option. Follow the manufacturer's recommendation for defrost time.
Once the vegan chili is thawed out, reheat it using:
- A saucepan. Place the thawed chili into a saucepan and reheat it over medium heat until it is thoroughly heated through (about fifteen to twenty minutes).
- A microwave. Place the thawed chili in a microwave-safe bowl and set the timer for three minutes (this may require more or less time depending on your microwave). Stir the chili halfway through the cooking time. If the chili isn’t heated through, continue reheating it at 1 minute intervals (stirring in between) until the chili is heated thoroughly.
If your chili is too thick after reheating, stir in some warm vegetable broth or tomato sauce.
Topping Options for Vegan Chili
You can also provide a variety of chili toppings on the side and let everyone fix their chili with their own choices. Some popular chili toppings include:
- diced avocado
- shredded (vegan) cheese
- (vegan) sour cream
- shredded lettuce
- crushed (gluten-free) keto tortilla chips
Serve some low carb cornbread on the side and this will become a popular meal any day of the week!
Creative ways to use up leftovers
Make a large batch of this crockpot vegan chili and enjoy it for several meals without ever getting bored.
- Stuff it into cauliflower tortillas for a fun and healthier twist on burritos
- Serve it over pressure cooker spaghetti squash
- Add it to a keto taco salad
Or, incorporate the leftover chili into one of my other recipes!
- Zucchini Nachos can be baked with this meatless chili on top.
- Stuffed Spaghetti Squash is perfect for using up any leftovers!
You can also use it for the filling in a keto cornbread casserole!
Vegan Chili (Slow Cooker)
- ¼ cup diced onion
- 1 medium green pepper diced
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 ½ teaspoons salt
- 8 ounces baby bella mushrooms chopped
- 1 pound white button mushrooms chopped
- 1 ½ teaspoons cumin
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 dash ground black pepper
- 1 cup chopped walnuts
- 6 ounces tomato paste
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- Mix all ingredients in a 4 to 6 quart slow cooker crock.
- Cook on high 3-4 hours or low 6-8 hours.
Array ( [calories] => 150 [carbohydrates] => 13 [protein] => 6 [fat] => 10 [saturated_fat] => 1 [sodium] => 1113 [potassium] => 665 [fiber] => 4 [sugar] => 6 [vitamin_a] => 1225 [vitamin_c] => 18.5 [calcium] => 43 [iron] => 2.1 )
Notes on Nutritional Information
Nutritional information for the recipe is provided as a courtesy and is approximate only. We cannot guarantee the accuracy of the nutritional information given for any recipe on this site. Erythritol carbs are not included in carb counts as it has been shown not to impact blood sugar. Net carbs are the total carbs minus fiber.
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