Vegan Chili

Dawn and I both grew up in Northern California. Another friend once shared with us that she missed seasons after moving to the Bay Area. She asked us how we knew when it was fall.

“Pumpkin spice lattes,” we chimed at the same time. We started laughing hysterically, our other friend…not so much. #teampumpkinspice

Now if one doesn’t have seasons in Northern California, one definitively does not have seasons in Southern California. So it’s been surprising that the last few days have been:

  1. rainy
  2. cold

Granted, I know many would not consider 48 degrees overnight “cold” but I assure you that it calls for my winter sweaters. My British husband has rolled his eyes a couple times when I added additional layers onto the boys’ outfits. I felt vindicated when Richard donned a sweater (excuse me, a jumper) for tonight’s walk. He may have been wearing shorts at the time, but as many of us have learned over the past week, a win is still a win.

During the 2017 Women’s March, I took my mom and baby Nicky out for the festivities. I was particularly proud of my mom for joining us, as she was relatively new to political activism at that point. When I texted pictures of the event to friends in Boston, I was expecting some celebratory emojis for my efforts.

“What is it? 70 degrees? Why are all the Californians wearing hats and scarves?”

Feeling irritated, I quickly responded. “It is 62 and windy.” Way to defend myself!

Anyway, thank you for joining me for this fun-filled, seasonal free association; here’s the chili recipe for these cold nights.


  • 2 15oz. cans red kidney beans, drained
  • 1 15 oz. can black beans, drained
  • 2 14.5 oz. can fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 16 oz. vegan sausage, chopped (can be omitted but ideal for texture)
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 1 red bell pepper chopped
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen corn
  • ½ sweet onion chopped
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 3-4 tbsp Creole seasoning
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ½ black pepper


  1. Add all ingredients to slow cooker (except vegan sausage)
  2. Cook on high for 3-4 hours or low for 7-8.
  3. Add sausage to slow cooker a half hour before serving.
  4. Serve with favorite toppings.

*I recommend enjoying this chili with corn bread.

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