spring tofu chili

two problems: first, it went from a near heatwave here in d.c. to 50 degrees, overnight. we were eating cool, summer foods then suddenly needed something to warm us up! second, i bought tofu from costco. that means i bought about five pounds of tofu. as the expiration date drew near i had to find a way to use it all up (apologies to my carnivorous husband, who might be having red meat withdrawals).

this tofu chili was an easy fix for both issues. rich, warm, and perfect for these cool spring nights.


you’ll need:
1 lb. tofu
3 red onions, fine diced
5 garlic cloves, minced
1 bell pepper, fine diced
1 jalapeno, fine diced
1/3 c. chile powder
1 tsp. cumin
28 oz. chopped tomatoes
14 oz. tomato sauce
1/2 tsp. oregano
1 can black beans, drained + rinsed
oil, salt, pepper
garnish: green onions or cilantro


  1. in a large heavy pot, heat ~4 tablespoons of oil. stir in onions, garlic, bell pepper, jalapeno, 4 tablespoons chile powder, cumin, and 2 teaspoons salt. cook until soft, about ten minutes, stirring occasionally.
  2. add in cans of tomatoes, tomato sauce and oregano. stir. reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes.
  3. cut tofu into 1/2 inch squares and toss with the rest of the chile powder. in a nonstick, heat a couple table spoons of oil and cook tofu in two batches. you just want the chile powder to toast and the tofu to crisp a teeny tiny bit. put in pot with a slotted spoon or spatula, so you don’t add too much grease to the chili.
  4. stir in black beans, let simmer for 10 minutes.
  5. plate + garnish with green onions or cilantro!



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he's a culinary institute of america grad in medical school. she's a journalist, who prior to their meeting, used the oven solely for storage.

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