Hearty, flavorful and healthy, this Vegan White Bean and Tofu Chili is a simple one pot meal that's ready in under an hour. Great for busy days!
We love a good chili around here especially on a cold day. This White Bean and Tofu Chili is my take on the very popular white chicken chili. Shredded tofu stands in perfectly for chicken for a satisfying, high protein bite the whole family is sure to love.
We love this version of chili, but if you're looking for a traditional tomato based version that's meat free be sure to check out my Three Bean Chili on this site. Try either version with this easy cornbread.
Traditionally, white chili is made with white beans instead of kidney beans and chicken instead of beef along with green chilis and corn. Cream cheese or heavy cream is usually added for a creamy base. This chili consists of many of the same ingredients with vegan options replacing the animal based products.
- olive oil
- smoked paprika
- green chilis
- cannellini beans
- vegetable broth or stock
- vegan cream cheese
- lime juice
See recipe card for quantities.
Making this chili is really simple requiring just one large pot so there isn't a lot to clean up.
Drain water from tofu and use a tofu press or wrap in a clean kitchen towel and place something heavy on top for 10-15 minutes to remove as much water as possible. Then use the large holes of a grater to shred block of tofu.
In a large pot, heat oil and sauté onion over medium. Add tofu, spices, garlic and salt. Gently toss to coat and cook for 1-2 minutes. Add corn, green chilis, 2 cans of beans and 4 ½ cups of vegetable broth and stir. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes.
While chili simmers, combine the third can of beans and remaining half cup of broth in food processor and puree until smooth.
Add pureed beans and cream cheese to pot and stir to combine well. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. Simmer for 10 minutes longer. Add fresh lime juice, stir and serve.
Hint: Use pressed tofu, if you can find it, to make prep even faster. This tofu comes drained and vacuum packed so it's ready to use right out of the package.
- Beans - instead of cannellini beans, you can use any white bean
- Tofu - use shredded jackfruit instead of tofu for a soy free option
- Cream cheese - you an omit the non dairy cream cheese if desired. Puree an additional can of beans to use instead.
- Spicy - add cayenne while cooking to give the chili some heat
- Deluxe - serve with avocado, tortilla chips or strips, vegan shredded cheese and cilantro
You'll need a large pot to make this chili as well as a food processor for pureeing one of the cans of beans. If you don't have a food processor you can skip pureeing the beans and add them directly to the soup. It won't be as thick and creamy, but still very delicious.
Cool the chili before storing in an air tight container in the refrigerator. Good for 2-3 days.
I haven't tried freezing this chili, but think it would be just fine to do so. Generally, dairy based soups tend to not do well, but since this chili uses non dairy cream cheese there shouldn't be too much of a change in texture after reheating. To freeze, cool completely before transferring to freezer safe container or bag. To use, thaw overnight in the fridge before heating in a pot on the stove.
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Never leave cooking food unattended
- Use oils with high smoking point to avoid harmful compounds
- Always have good ventilation when using a gas stove
Adjust the salt level based on the vegetable broth you use. I use homemade broth with no salt added so I add another pinch of salt towards the end of cooking.
Looking for other recipes like this? Try these:
These are my favorite dishes to serve with Vegan White Bean and Tofu Chili:
Vegan White Bean and Tofu Chili
- Food processor
- 16 oz super firm tofu
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small onion
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 tsp paprika
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ tsp ground coriander
- ⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper optional
- 1-2 garlic cloves, minced
- ½ tsp salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 1 ½ cup corn
- 4 oz can diced green chilis
- 3 15 oz cans cannellini beans
- 4 ½ cups vegetable broth/stock + additional ½ cup separated
- 1 container of non dairy cream cheese, 7-8 oz
- juice of 1-2 limes
- Drain water from tofu and press using a tofu press or by wrapping in a clean kitchen towel and placing something heavy on top for 10-15 minutes.
- After tofu has been pressed, use the large holes of a box grater to shred block of tofu.
- In a large pot, heat oil and sauté onion over medium for 5-7 minutes. Add tofu, spices, garlic, salt and pepper. Gently toss to coat and cook for 1-2 minutes.
- Add corn, green chilis, 2 cans of beans and 4 ½ cups of vegetable broth and stir. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes.
- While chili simmers, combine the third can of beans and remaining half cup of broth in food processor and puree until smooth.
- Add pureed beans and cream cheese to chili and stir to combine well. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.
- Simmer for 10 minutes longer. Add fresh lime juice, stir and serve with avocado, tortilla chips and fresh cilantro if desired .
- Use pressed tofu, if available, to reduce prep time.
- Adjust salt depending on the the sodium content of the vegetable broth/stock you use.