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Hearty Smoked Chili | Raw Vegan | Oil-Free

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A warm pot of chili on a cold winter’s day is one of the most comforting foods I can think of. Chili warms you inside and out, plus it’s filling, easy to make, and nutritious to boot. This recipe is straightforward to pull together.  As your eyes scan over the ingredient list, you might feel a bit intimated by its length, blame the spices for that.   Just take a deep breath and tell yourself,  “I can do this!” Because you can, I promise.

I broke it into three segments to ease your mind.  The sauce… super easy, pulse in the food processor.  The spices… super-duper easy, scoop and plop in a food processor.  Boy, don’t I sound like a seasoned chef (ohoh a pun! hehe) and then the veggies… No sweat. Chop and place in the food processor.  Pulse all together and voila!  I promised you it was easy.  If a recovering spice-a-phobic like me can handle this, you can too.

You can enjoy this chili right away, but I highly recommend putting it into a bowl, covering, and sliding into the fridge overnight.  By doing this, it will allow all the amazing flavors to meld together.  When you cook food with heat, the heat opens all the flavors and brings them together right away, but I am sure that you have experienced that soups, stews, chilies… always taste better the next or even two days later.

As you make this recipe, you have the added beauty in making this just the way you like.  I have had many chilies in my life, and they have ranged from thick and hearty to a more soup-like texture. We like it thick and hearty.

Below, I instruct you to rehydrate the sun-dried tomatoes in 2 cups of warm water.  I didn’t use the sun-dried tomatoes that come packed in oil.  You will remove the tomatoes from the soak water, but keep that water to add at the very end.  I added all of it, and as you can see in my pictures, it is rather thick.  So, if it is still too thick for your liking, add more water.

I also added some walnuts to the recipe.  I did this for the nutritional values of omega 3’s but also because it adds to the overall flavor, and I do enjoy a little crunch and heartiness in my chili.   You can always use sunflower seeds if you can’t eat nuts or just omit them altogether.   I hope you enjoy it and please let me know if you try it.  I always love to hear your comments.  I served this with my Vegan Pepper Jack Cheese, a great combo!


Yields 7 cups





  1. Rehydrate the sun-dried tomatoes in 2 cups of warm water while you get all of the other ingredients ready.  This step is just to soften them.  After soaking, remove the tomatoes from the water but keep the soak water.  Set the water aside for now.
  2. In a food processor, fitted with the “S” blade, pulse together the avocado flesh, fresh tomatoes, sun-dried tomatoes, lemon juice, and maple syrup.
  3. Add the spices; oregano, chili powder, cumin, paprika, red pepper flakes, garlic powder, black pepper, celery salt, thyme, and salt.  Pulse together.
  4. Add the walnuts, mushroom, tomato, yellow pepper, onion, and corn kernels.  Pulse just a few times.  Add the sun-dried tomato soak water, as little or as much of it as you like.  I used all of it.
    • For a nut-free option, replace the walnuts with sunflower seeds
  5. Serve at room temperature or warm in the dehydrator, setting the temp at 145 degrees (F) for 30 minutes or until warm.  You can also heat it on the stove in a small saucepan to finger dipping temp.
  6. Store leftovers in the fridge for 3-4 days.


43 thoughts on “Hearty Smoked Chili | Raw Vegan | Oil-Free

  1. sally says:

    Wow Amie Sue,
    this looks amazing.
    The ingrediants sound great together.
    Can’t wait to try it ;-)

  2. Lorraine Marsh says:

    Good Morning,

    I am so upset, for some reason I can no longer print the recipes, is anyone else having problems?

    Thanks, Lorraine

    • amie-sue says:

      Good morning Lorraine,

      I just tried to print a recipe and it worked just fine. Have you tried reloading the browser that you use on your computer or reboot your computer all together? Sometime strange glitches happen. Let me know. amie sue

  3. this looks CRAZY!!! I have to try it!!


  4. Nancy says:

    Hi I am so anxious to try your cheese recipe, probably where you are there is also a Jack cheese with garlic and green onions also very good and could probably be made with your cheese recipe, great for pizza. Could you share where you buy some of your staples and spices? thanks for your very appreciated hard work and willingness to share. nancy baughman

  5. Lyn L. (mom of many) :] says:

    Amie Sue – you are a little sweetie!!! :],

    I am so VERY EXCITED to try your chili recipe. I will ready my old, but very good recipe for the trash as I KNOW yours will win it hands down. :] I am not confident when it comes to spices (so glad you now are), so I am so glad you don’t just tell us to throw in what ever amount to taste, that’s ALWAYS intimidating to me . The big bonus here is the pepperjack cheese- Gene LOVES Pepper Jack cheese. Whoppeeee I think I’ll just dance a little jig on my way to the kitchen. I plan on replacing all my old (sadd) recipes with healthy ones. “Out with the old and in with the New (and definitely improved)”, Thanks to you, Lyn :]

    • amie-sue says:

      I made this chili partly with you two in mind. It was at least a week or two ago that you asked for a raw chili… ta-da! I appreciate your vote of confidence in my recipes. Oh the pressure, I hope it is pleasing to the tastebuds for you guys. You must let me know, because this is how I learn too.

      I identify with you about spices. I am sure you have read a few of recipes where I share my spice-a-phobia-syndrom. lol It’s all a learning process and I am thankful that I am catching on. I could never follow recipes that just listed out the spices without measurements. A cruel joke to play on someone like me. :P I am passing my spice-confidence on to you, I have enough to share.

      I love your joy in preparing these foods for Gene… just like I do for Bob. What a blessing, isn’t it?

      Once you get to the kitchen, don’t stop dancing… dance through the process. I look forward in hearing how it went. Blessings, amie sue

  6. Cassie says:

    You made my day!!! I have dinner planned now! Im just out for a 25mi bicycle ride, then to pick up agar powder & peppers for the pepper jack cheese to go with the chili! Hoo hoo! Thanks so much, Cassie
    Yee ha

    • amie-sue says:

      Hi Cassie,

      Oh I love making another persons day a good one. :) That makes my day! hehe I hope you enjoy both of the recipes. The cheese is ready to make in less than 30 minutes so it is easy and fun to make on the spot. I hope you had a great time on your bike trip (since you will read this after it) I admire you ditty-and-go to do a ride like that. :) Many blessings. Keep me posted how things go and to make sure you made it back from your adventure too. hehe amie sue

      • cassie says:

        The chili was amazing! Absolutely delicious. I admit when trying new recipes, I’m always a bit reluctant, but once again your creation was very very very good. Thanks so much! When my husband Paul said “It’s ok” then a few bites later said “I’d eat this again” I knew it was a winner! Just as the cold winter is approaching here in Wisconsin. Oh, I left out the corn (too GMO for me, and I don’t like mushrooms)I put 1/2c walnuts and 1/2 sun flower seeds both soaked/dehydrated. Voila’ XXOO

        PS I could find the agar at local health store, (I’ll order on Amazon) so I made the pepper jack without, yum! I’ll bet it will go well with your pizza bread. Blessings to you!

        Have you tried to recreated “Mary’s gone crackers” crackers? I have but they’re not totally raw. I bet you could make a mean Amie-sues gone crackers cracker!

        • cassie says:

          Forgot to mention, I warmed the chili in a double boiler. It was so delicious! Thank you so much Amie Sue. Your recipes are are incredible! This will be a hit for Packer games!!

          • amie-sue says:

            Your making me blush. :) I am just so happy to hear that you and your honey enjoyed it. I tend to hold my breath, wondering if others like a recipe like we do. Packers game here we come!! Blessings, xox amie sue

        • amie-sue says:


          You just made my night. :) Thank you for sharing this with me. How was the cheese without the agar?

          I haven’t tried Mary’s Gone Crackers… to be honest I rarely ever buy packaged raw foods, but only because I have so many on hand that I create that it is all we can do to stay on top of it. lol Is there a particular flavor that they make that I can check out? :)

          Thank you again, your awesome! amie sue

          • cassie says:

            The cheese dip was good. I like the added tahini. I had not used it before in cheese dips. Here’s a recipe that I’ve used for Mary gone crackers, they real crunchy. http://www.mynewroots.org/site/2012/05/happy-crackers-2
            I have found that if strong spices are incorporated like caraway for example it’s too overpowering for dips.

            • amie-sue says:

              Morning Cassie,

              Did you bake or dehydrate the crackers? I don’t use rice, so I would have to think about that. Hmmm :)

              • cassie says:

                I don’t use (eat) rice either. I used to cook faro often-an Italian type of rice….it’s a wheat grain. But since reading “wheat belly” I try my best not to eat wheat.) So, I’ve made these “copy cat Mary’s gone crackers” substituting quinoa. Now I’ve cooked it (it’s kinda sticky when cooked)so that helps adhere all the other ingredients. I baked them on my first try and then thought why not dehydrate them! So, I’ve made them raw or mostly raw. I’ve used sprouted quinoa too. (Just saw your new sprouted quinoa post! And that reminded me to check the cracker post!) I enjoy sprouted quinoa in salads. I’ve dehydrated a bunch, but haven’t done anything with them. They’re in the freezer. Oh wait, yes I have, I did put some into granola bars with good success. OMGosh I have to tell you about my Nut clusters, you’ll love how far reaching they have gone…. I’ll post under nut clusters! (probably tomorrow..I’m way too tired

                • amie-sue says:

                  Morning Cassie,

                  Good to hear from you. :) I have to say that every person that I have met that has removed gluten from their diet, has felt better in the long run. The crackers that you speak of sound yummy. Raw crackers are a staple in this house. Bob, my never ending grazer really enjoys them. hehe There ar so many things to do with sprouted quinoa, I have used them in granolas, cereals, pies, crackers, kale chips… they are not strong in flavor as you are aware of so they can be used creatively. :)

                  Lets have a happy day, what do you say? hehe amie sue

  7. Dee says:

    I am SO going to make this!!…The ingredient list looks simple, and I have everything already..yay! I made your corn chili last year and it was a huge hit! I can tell by the ingredient list that this one is going to be even better. I am EXCITED! Thanks!

    • amie-sue says:

      Oh thank you Dee… you so sweet. I am happy to hear that you enjoyed the corn soup last year. Perfect time to revisit that recipe too. :) I hope you try this one, I would love to hear your thoughts on it. Have a wonderful afternoon and evening for that matter. haha amie sue

  8. Debbie says:

    Oh My Goodness…I just made this for supper and it is in the dehydrator right now. But today I snitched with a spoon and it is even perfect cold! THANK YOU! Being a new Raw foodist, I am so sick of eating cold food and with fall and winter in the north woods of Wisconsin. one needs to stay warm…too early for the wood stove but brings back the comfort of the fall! next time I make this, I may try and sprout some red kidney beans a few days a head of time just for the old way of chili…and make your bread also but today I woke up just wanting some good old fashioned chili…Thanks again Amie-sue I am lovin this sight more and more!

    • amie-sue says:

      Well Debbie…. It always excites and amazes me when people make a recipe right away. hehe Thank you for trusting my recipes and giving them a try. I look forward in hearing how the end result came out.

      I know what you mean about needing some warming foods come Fall and Winter. I went 100% raw in Alaska, and started in the Fall… what was I thinking? lol I think I have permanent goosebumps! I am not 100% anymore since my body didn’t respond the best after a full year of it. But we eat a very high raw diet and there are times I do eat 100%. It is all about listening to your own body and feeding it appropriately. Don’t let labels lock you into any eating pattern if you are operating in optimal health.

      Anyway, have you read my post on “How to “warm” up your raw foods”? You may be well aware of all of this and I don’t want to insult you but I thought I would share it just in case, since you indicated you were new to raw foods. https://nouveauraw.com/raw-techniques/how-to-warm-up-your-raw-food-dishes/

      Have a great day Debbie… keep in touch. amie sue

    • amie-sue says:

      Oh, I almost forgot to talk with you about sprouting red kidney beans… I just want to caution you because I have read that kidney bean sprouts are toxic and should be avoided because they retain phytates which cause poor digestion and gas.

      In my research I also read that the” Food and Drug Administration recommends kidney beans should, at minimum, be soaked for 5 hours, and then boiled for at least 30 minutes before they are safe to eat. Essentially, raw food eaters should never eat kidney beans uncooked or even prepared in dehydrators, slow cookers or crockpots, as these cookers do not reach high enough temperatures to destroy the toxins present in kidney beans. Partially cooked kidney beans are even more toxic than uncooked beans!”

      I just don’t want you to get sick. If you are not 100% raw, you can still add cooked kidney beans to this chili. There are still plenty of health benefits to them.

      Here’s to happy tummies! amie sue

  9. Debbie says:

    Morning Amie-sue,
    well the true test is official i ate two bowls of this scrumptious chili and brushed my teeth before bed. 5 minutes later my beloved husband get in bed and leans over for the good night smoochie and he pulls back and said now did you put all the garlic from the garden in your chili wheew…so guess i better use baking soda after the chili night! It is so good have to eat the last bowl for breakfast/lunch today! i only eat two times a day since going RAW the amount of food I now eat has packed such energy that I am never hungry unless I am making some of your cookies then I am munching all day long! thanks dear this is a must have on my new Rawpatroir.

    • amie-sue says:

      That is just wonderful to hear Debbie. :) Bob ate the chili two days in a row and then our electrician came one evening. He had to do some electrical work in the dark and it was chili. I asked him if he was hungry and his eyes lit up. He is young and has done plenty of work for us around here and is always eating my raw foods. I feed him well. lol He is catching on to the raw thing. So, I told him that I had some raw chili, and raw cheese crackers. He instantly said, “YES”! but don’t heat over 118 degrees. hehe Stinker. Long story, short. He gobbled it up and loved every bite. Later Bob asked for some chili. DOH! It was gone. He smiled knowing that the electrician got the last big bowl.

      Anyway, sort got winded there. I am thrilled to hear that your body is being fueled with healthy foods. I agree that foods like this are more satiating and sustaining to our bodies because it isn’t void nutrition.

      Thank you for sharing and tell the hubby that I am sorry for the garlic breathing dragon. hehe amie sue

  10. Gwen Miller says:

    Hi Amie Sue ~ I made this two nights ago and we ate it last night. You are right ~ it was even better tasting after allowing all the flavors to “marinate” overnight. My hubby (Bob) had a 2nd bowlful!!

    May I ask your recommendations for bringing the heat down just a bit? I did substitute the red pepper flakes for 1/2 tsp cayenne, but it is still a bit too hot for our taste.

    I am a new subscriber and have learned so much from your recipes. You put a lot of heart into each recipe you share with us. Thank you ~ Gwen

    • amie-sue says:

      That is great Gwen, I so loved that you shared this. I find many raw dishes reach that “sweet spot” where the flavors really brighten and meld together. The main contributors to the heat are the; red pepper flakes, black pepper and garlic. If the batch already made is still to hot, try adding a little sweetener to counter balance it. Start with maybe 1 tsp and build up. For the next batch, leave out those three ingredients, taste test and slowly feed them in in smaller measurements… tasting as you go.

      I am happy to have you here. Many blessing to you and your family! amie sue

      • Gwen Miller says:

        Thanks so much for your feedback. I added the sweetener to my bowl and that worked just fine. Bob can handle the heat better than I; he loves it just like it is. ;-)

        It seems the culprit is the red pepper flakes, so when I make it again, I’ll bring the measure down to 1/4 tsp and see how that tastes then add more.

        thanks again ~

        • amie-sue says:

          Your welcome Gwen. A lot of times, there are tricks to counter act over powering spices.. so I am glad that this helped. :) Have a wonderful evening, amie sue

  11. RenB says:

    So I finally got around to making the chili today. I left the chunky ingredients together for two days in the fridge because I just could not get to it and I am so glad that it worked out. The flavors had blended nicely.

    Thank you so much for sharing this recipe. It made me realize how eating a high raw diet can be just as satisfying as the poor standard diet that I used to consume.

    I must say, this was one great meal! It amazed me how wonderful it was cold! (I couldn’t wait to warm it up because it smelled and looked wonderful)! The flavors and textures were just like my old fashioned chili that I have made for years until now.

    Your recipes always thrill me and I am so sorry that I have not posted to let you know that until recently! Many blessings to you and gratefulness for your sharing!

    • amie-sue says:

      Good evening RenB,

      Oh I am soooo thrilled! Thank you so much for sharing the outcome with me, it means a lot. :) I think that eating a healthy diet, rich in raw foods is WAY more satisfying, physically, mentally and emotionally. Does that make sense? There is no need to be bored with this eating lifestyle. You have blessed me RenB, thank you.

      I hope that continue to be inspired by my recipes and other raw recipes that come across your path. Have a wonderful evening, amie sue

  12. Travisli says:

    Amie-sue, this is yet ANOTHER fantastic recipe I’ve tried from you. Since it’s been cold at night I’ve been craving some chili, which concerned me because I enjoy being 100% raw (I feel my best 99.9% raw) and didn’t want to cave to a bowl of hot chili! This recipe tastes JUST LIKE CHILI! The only thing I did wrong was pulse my ingredients too much — next time I’ll do it less and it’ll be even more chunky. THANKS for everything you do. You are awesome!

    • amie-sue says:

      Oh that just blesses my heart Travisli! I am so happy that you enjoyed it and it helped with your craving. I know just what you mean though. If you have any other “cravings” that you would like to see “rawified” let me know. I can try to help. Have a blessed evening, amie sue :)

  13. Stephanie says:

    Just made this dish and despite the fact that I blended the last ingredients too much, it tasted so……. good. Thank you so much for this website as I make my Raw Food Transition. Have you thought about starting a school to get people their raw food certification?

    • amie-sue says:

      Your welcome Stephanie. :) I am glad that you enjoyed it. Right now in my life, I am not set up to have a certification school, but I appreciate the thought. :) I would be fun to do but I have soooo many things that I want to do and am doing that I can’t keep up. hehe So for now, I will continue to share and “teach” on my site.

      Have a blessed weekend. amie sue

  14. Nathalie says:

    Wow and wow again! this Chilie is Amazing! I’ve been eating it for the past two nights and I think I’ll keep going until it’s all gone! The next time I will try to make it with fresh garlic. Thank you for making my ‘raw-vegan’ life so easy!

    • amie-sue says:

      Good afternoon Nathalie,

      I am sorry that it took me a bit to respond to you. I have been on a “walk about” for the past 6 weeks (see blog posting). I am not fully integrating back into things but I wanted to start tackling some of the questions that have been collecting. :) All that to say, I appreciate your patience with me. :)

      Awesome! So glad that you are enjoying the chili recipe. We love it too! Thank you for sharing your experience with it, means a lot. amie sue

  15. Carol Bitar says:

    Hi Ami Sue,
    I made your hearty smokey Chili con carne tonight for dinner. It was a hit with my family. It taste like traditional chili and is so easy to make and it is very filling. I have been on a quest to improve my health by eating vegan and now I am diving into the raw foods. I am so excited to try more of your recipes, they look so appetizing.
    Thank you so much for all the wonderful tasty recipes you share.

    • amie-sue says:

      You are welcome Carol. We love this chili too. I am so thrilled that you and your family enjoy it too. Please keep in touch as you try more recipes. Have a blessed weekend. amie sue :)

  16. gracefulheather says:

    Another home run recipe! Warming from the inside out. I plan on bringing a large batch to our family Christmas this weekend (it’s a soup and cookie potluck). Delicious!! Thanks, Amie Sue!

    • amie-sue says:

      We are on a winning streak! I love it. hehe This will be perfect to take to the potluck. I can’t wait to hear what others say too. :) Enjoy and thanks for the feed-back. :) Blessings, amie sue

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