pepperoni chili

by Kristina Sloggett

in Dinner,recipes,Vegan

pepperoni chili

This chili tastes exactly as I imagined it would – a warm bowl of spicy pepperoni. I have had this on my mind for a few weeks, and could not wait to try it. First thing you think of when I say pepperoni? Pizza, right? Most likely not chili. Trust me, this works. It works well.

I added some other classic pizza toppings – green bell pepper, tomato, mushroom. Okay, no mushroom. I thought about it, even had them out to chop up – then changed my mind. No, not in chili.

pepperoni taste test

After standing in the faux meat aisle for too long, holding two brands of pepperoni, I decided to conduct a taste test – I bought both!

In categories of flavor, texture and structure (whether they held up or ripped when peeling individual slices), Tofurky won our vote in a landslide. The flavor was spicy and very pepperoni like, the texture was decent, and the individual slices stayed in one piece. For this recipe, I sliced the pepperoni into quarters, so the structure didn’t matter as much, but it will if I ever want to use it on pizza…

We enjoyed this chili with a cold beer and broccoli cheese muffins, and piled it high with fresh jalapeno and more pepperoni:

vegan pepperoni chili

pepperoni chili

1-2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large yellow onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 jalapeno pepper, minced
1 can fire roasted tomatoes
1 + cup vegetable broth (or water)
2 cups cooked pinto beans
2 cups (1 can) kidney beans
2-3 tablespoons chili powder
2 teaspoons cumin
2 teaspoons paprika
sea salt and pepper
1 (4 ounce) package pepperoni

In large soup pot, saute onion with olive oil. Add garlic, bell and jalapeno peppers, tomatoes and broth. Add beans, chili powder, cumin, paprika, pepperoni, salt and pepper –  stir to combine and simmer on medium / medium low heat for 60-90 minutes (or transfer to slow cooker after sauteing veggies).

pepperoni chili

Pepperoni – it’s not just for pizza anymore.


{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Heather (Where's the Beach) January 24, 2013 at 5:10 am

Fantastic idea. We love chili so it’s always fun to come up with new ideas for it. And Tofurky just has some great products period. And you know I’m digging the jalapenos ;-)


2 Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table January 24, 2013 at 7:17 am

I think pepperoni belongs on everything. I should have been Italian. 😉


3 Kristina Sloggett January 24, 2013 at 2:09 pm

I am starting to think the same thing – pepperoni is going to happen more around here ;)


4 Allie January 24, 2013 at 8:18 am

What? A hot bowl of pepperoni with a beer? I want your life. Or maybe just all your food. And a dachshund. I haven’t made chili yet this winter (yeah, I don’t know how that happened, either). I may need to start with a pepperoni version!


5 Kristina Sloggett January 24, 2013 at 2:08 pm

yes, you definitely should start with pepperoni chili! I wish you were closer, I’d have you over to visit the dachshund and eat chili with us! :)


6 Jess @ Flying on Jess Fuel January 24, 2013 at 8:21 am

Ooh! What an interesting idea. Chili is my hubby’s favorite meal and he LOVES pepperoni, so this sounds perfect!


7 Kristina Sloggett January 24, 2013 at 2:06 pm

hi Jess – thanks for stopping by! kinda sounds like THIS should be the next chili you make then? :) cheers!


8 Jess January 24, 2013 at 9:55 am

omg YUM! I love turkey pepperoni and just made a really good chili last weekend. DEF trying this next time!!


9 Kristina Sloggett January 24, 2013 at 2:05 pm

yay – you’ll LOVE it!


10 jobo January 24, 2013 at 10:17 am

That is an awesome twist on traditional chili!!! love it!


11 Heather @ Better With Veggies January 24, 2013 at 11:52 am

Interesting addition to chili! I’m glad you’re not afraid of a little faux-meat. :)


12 Kristina Sloggett January 24, 2013 at 2:02 pm

I am not at all! I do prefer to make it, but every now and then it’s okay. I love pepperoni…


13 Bianca-Vegan Crunk January 24, 2013 at 12:06 pm

I am sooooo making this!! I love vegan pepperoni, but the only thing I ever know to do with it is pizza. Btw, I put mushrooms in my chili every time, and it’s a wonderful addition. Try it!


14 Kristina Sloggett January 24, 2013 at 2:01 pm

Bianca, which pepperoni do you like? The next chili I make, I WILL try mushrooms! I knew I should have done it with this one! ;)


15 Sarah @ The Smart Kitchen January 24, 2013 at 7:36 pm


This not only makes me think of Mike’s famous Pepperoni Sauce from Top Chef, it makes me happy because I might not eat meat, but I am a meat lover…and cured meats are the MOST fun.*

*If you haven’t seen the movie Shag, that’s not as funny. And you should go see the movie. :)


16 Kristina Sloggett January 24, 2013 at 7:58 pm

oooh, not only am I excited about a new movie to watch, but I also must find out more about this Pepperoni Sauce!?!?? I knew I should be watching Top Chef…


17 Bill Gerrard January 30, 2013 at 7:42 am

This sounds wonderful!
One question, at what point do you add the pepperoni to the chili?


18 Kristina Sloggett January 30, 2013 at 10:33 am

oops, thanks Bill! I have updated the recipe to include the pepperoni – I added it with the final ingredients, beans etcetera. Enjoy!


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