Missing the taste and texture of meat in your meals? You may not be able to use meat in your vegetarian chili recipe, but who says you can't use a meat substitute? Believe it or not, there are many vegan alternatives to animal ingredients. And, while it's true they don't taste like the real thing, they come awfully close. Below are some of the safe vegan alternatives to common animal ingredients.
Meat. Try portobello mushrooms, textured vegetable protein or TVP, tempeh, tofu, beans, eggplant, or seitan. If you can't think of a single vegetarian chili recipe that will complement any of those perfectly, take your search online. You'll be surprised at the number of recipes you can find.
Parmesan cheese. Make your own fake Parmesan cheese by blending 1/4 tablespoon salt, 1/4 cup toasted sesame seeds, and 1/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes. Blend until everything has been completely ground up, and use the same way you would the regular Parmesan cheese.
Mayonnaise. Most vegans live in fear of mayo but not you, and not with this tofu mayo. Simply blend 1 cup silken or firm tofu, 1 small garlic clove that has been minced, 1 teaspoon good mustard, 1/4 tablespoon salt, and 2 tablespoons cider vinegar. Continue blending while you pour the canola or olive oil.
Sugar. Fruit juice, sucanat, and natural sugar are great alternatives to the usual sugar households use.
Eggs. Instead of eggs, you can use flaxseed, tofu that has been pureed, soy eggs, or egg substitutes.
Milk. Can't use regular milk in your cooking? Improvise with almond milk, soy milk, oat milk, or rice milk.
Don't limit yourself to this list, though. Experiment with different ingredients so you can come up with textures and flavors uniquely your own. In the same way there is more than one way to skin a cat, there are 101 ways to whip up one vegetarian chili recipe after another.