Vegan Chilli Con “Carne”

One of our favourite dishes to cook and enjoy is what we term “Mexican Mess”. This dish is basically Nachos with a large tasty salad on top. The key ingredient in this dish is most definitely the Chilli  Con “Carne”.

Shown here served on Nachos with Vegan cheese, guacamole and salad

Serves: 4
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes


  • One large onion – diced
  • 1-2 tbsp Olive oil 
  • 1 Birdseye chilli
    • OR 1 tbsb of chilli powder
    • OR 1 Cayenne chilli if less heat preferred
  • 1 tbsb of cumin
  • 1 tbsb of oregano
  • 1 tbsb of hot paprika
  • 1 tbsb of chopped coriander
  • 1 tbsb of chopped jalapeño chilli (optional)
  • 1 400g tin of beans (black beans, maxi beans, kidney beans – we prefer black beans) or you could use lentils, tofu or a Vegan mince like TVP (textured vegetable protein) –  whatever you have in the pantry
  • 1 400g tin of diced/chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tsp of porcini powder (not essential if you don’t have this it is mushroom powder it makes it super yummy)
  • 1 tsp of sugar, agave nectar or maple syrup
  • You can include other suitable ingredients such as corn, diced capsicum (peppers), 


  1. Heat a deep dish fry pan (or saucepan) to a medium-high heat
  2. Add the olive oil and the onion to the pan and fry for 2 minutes
  3. Add chilli, cumin, oregano, paprika and coriander  and fry until onions become translucent
  4. Add remaining ingredients, reduce heat and simmer for about 30 minutes stirring occasionally
  5. If the chilli is drying out while simmering, add small amounts of water to maintain the desired consistency
  6. Serve with your favourite Mexican dish —  Tacos, Nachos, Burritos, Tortillas, salad or eat on its own for tasty high protein dish

This dish can be easily stored in portions and frozen and reheats easily in the microwave.

This recipe was originally adapted from  “Mexican Vegetarian Cooking” by Edith Metcalfe De Plata Healing Arts Press  (1983)

Nutritional Guide

The following approximation is based on using black beans, sugar, a red chilli and including Jalapenos.

Amount per serving:

Calories / Kilojoules182 / 761
Total Fat7 g
Cholesterol0 mg
Sodium16 mg
Total Carbohydrate22 g
     Dietary Fibre9 g
     Sugars4 g
Protein10 g

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