Low Waste Recipe: Vegan Red Lentil Chili

Low Waste Recipe: Vegan Red Lentil Chili

This recipe is adapted from Minimalist Baker.

Winters in Minnesota get long, and sometimes it feels like there is no end in sight. You forget what warm feels like and what the trees look like with leaves on them. While we (unfortunately) cannot control the weather, we can choose to fuel our bodies with hearty, nourishing meals that warm us from the inside out. At Tare Market, we love recipes that utilize low waste, package-free ingredients that are affordable and planet-friendly.

This plant-based red lentil chili is vegan (or vegetarian, depending on your toppings) and so delicious– omnivores will love it, too. It’s perfect to cozy up in front of a fireplace or your favorite TV show with, or to serve when you’re feeding a crowd. (Super Bowl parties, anyone?) The most time-consuming step is cooking your dried beans, so plan ahead for this. Preparing them in advance makes the rest of your preparations a breeze. Once the beans are cooked, this recipe takes about an hour to prep and cook and serves 6. Enjoy!
Dried red kidney beans pictured in a white measuring cupThis image shows chopped peppers and food scraps on a cutting boardThis image shows a bowl of finished chili ready to serve.
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 45 minutes
Yields: 6 servings
From Tare Market:
  • 2 tbsp avocado oil or coconut oil
  • 1/2 tsp fine sea salt (more to taste)
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper (more to taste)
  • 3 tbsp chili powder
  • 2 tbsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 3/4 cup dry red lentils
  • 1 cup dry red kidney beans (cooked in advance)
Please note that at this time, our bulk salt, pepper, and spices are only available in-store at both Tare Market locations and are not able to be shipped or packaged for curbside pickup orders. 
From your local co-op, farmer’s market, or grocery store:
  • 1 medium white or yellow onion, diced
  • 1 medium red pepper, diced
  • 1 small jalapeño, finely diced (remove seeds to reduce heat)
  • 2 - 15 oz. cans diced tomatoes
  • 3 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 cups water
Bonus points for composting your veggie scraps! See our previous post, Composting 101, for help getting started.

Cooking instructions:

THE DAY BEFORE: Cook the dry kidney beans using the method of your choosing before starting the steps that follow. Check out this how-to guide if you need some assistance. 

Step 1. Saute the onion and red pepper for 3-4 minutes in avocado or coconut oil in a large pot over medium heat.

Step 2. Add the garlic powder and diced jalapeno to the pot along with a pinch of salt and pepper. Stir to combine.

Step 3. Add 2 tbsp of chili powder, 1 tbsp cumin, smoked paprika, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, and water. Stir to combine, then increase the heat to medium high and heat until the mixture reaches a low boil.

Step 4. Add the red lentils and reduce the heat to bring the mixture down to a simmer. Simmer for 15 minutes, or until the lentils are cooked through. 

Step 5. Add the cooked kidney beans, another pinch of salt and pepper, and the remaining 1 tbsp each of chili powder and cumin. Stir to combine, then reduce the heat and cover. Simmer for another 15-20 minutes.

Step 6. Add more salt and pepper to taste, then serve. See serving suggestions below.

Serving suggestions:

Serve your chili over rice or quinoa. Top it with any combination of your favorites, like fresh cilantro, avocado, and corn chips, or, for those who eat dairy, cheese and sour cream. Enjoy!

Whether you’re a seasoned bulk shopping expert or have no idea where to begin, we are here for you! Visit either of Tare Market’s Minneapolis zero waste store locations and we’ll help you shop for zero waste food from our bulk section, or shop online for sustainably packaged bulk offerings shipped right to your door.

Don’t forget to tag us in pictures of your zero waste meals! We love to see how you use our products.

Subscribe to this blog post to be notified of future blog posts. 


What are you looking for?

Your cart