This Slow Cooker Soy Chorizo Chili is a true comfort food, slow-simmered with nutritious veggies, and a thick, hearty, slightly spicy meaty sauce that is sure to be your favorite easy weeknight meal.
There are times in your life when you stumble upon a store-bought food so delicious that it requires a recipe dedicated to it.
This is such a recipe- in tribute to an item at one of my favorite stores (ok let’s be honest, my one and only favorite store)- Trader Joe’s.
There are so many things I love from Trader Joe’s, and Soy Chorizo (or also referred to as “soyrizo”) is definitely in the top 5.
You can use this stuff in many vegan recipes such as pastas, Mexican dishes, and of course- CHILI! It adds a really nice flavor- and also a little kick. Just one bite and I promise you’ll be hooked.
Or you also have the option to make it without the soyrizo. It’s still super delicious! Note: If you do make it without, be sure to double (or triple) up on the spices, as the soy chorizo adds a lot of flavor.
And the best part of this recipe is- it requires very little prep work! The only ingredients you need to chop are the onion and green bell pepper, making it easy to throw everything in your slow cooker in just 5-10 minutes.
So what is Soy Chorizo (Soyrizo)?
Traditional chorizo is a spicy sausage made of pork, used primarily in Mexican and Spanish cooking. The taste is so good, that vegans thankfully came up with a meat-free version called Soyrizo, or Soy Chorizo.
Soy chorizo is a meat substitute made from soy protein or TVP (Textured Vegetable Protein), and additional spices.
If you’ve been following my blog for awhile, you know that I (almost always) focus on whole food ingredients, and avoid processed foods in my recipes.
But I’m also human and don’t eat perfectly 100% of the time. And once in awhile, I like to add this soy chorizo in my recipes. It’s not the healthiest option I know, but it’s so good and sometimes you just gotta live a little!
How to make this Soy Chorizo Recipe:
To begin, it’s really simple. Just add all the ingredients into your slow cooker/crockpot (the order doesn’t matter) and stir well with a large spoon.
Note that I only use 1/2 the package of the soy chorizo, as it’s pretty spicy AND also very high in sodium. You can always taste it when it’s almost done cooking and add more if necessary.
The soy chorizo should be already cooked (check the package to make sure), so it’s ok to add in at the end of the cooking process.
Or, use the remaining chorizo in other recipes, such as a topping for this Spicy Baked Potato with Broccoli and Vegan Queso.
Note: make sure you remove the casing/outer wrapper of the chorizo before using!
The above photo is the before (uncooked) chili, but doesn’t it look good already? I have to say I’ve tasted it cold like this and it’s really good. But we should probably cook it to get the best flavor, right? =)
Cover your slow cooker and set to low heat for 3-4 hours or high for 5-6 hours. After a few hours, you’ll start to smell the amazing spicy flavors throughout your house- which is one of my favorite things about using a slow cooker (compared to the Instant Pot).
When ready, scoop the chili into a bowl and enjoy! I like to add crackers, chopped cilantro, or even some vegan sour cream.
Store this chili in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week. This recipe makes A LOT of chili (10 servings), so you’ll have plenty of leftovers for the week.
I do recommend using your slow cooker to get the best flavor for this chili, but if you are in a hurry, you can also cook this chili on your stovetop.
To cook this chili on your stovetop- to a large pot or Dutch oven, add 2 tablespoons unsalted vegetable broth (or you can also use 1 tablespoon olive oil) over medium-high heat.
Add the diced onions and bell pepper and cook until the onions are soft and translucent, stirring occasionally.
Reduce heat to medium, all remaining ingredients and let simmer for about 2 hours, stirring occasionally.
- Slow Cooker– You’ll need a slow cooker/crockpot to make this recipe. I use this one.
- Santoku Knife– this is my favorite knife for chopping the onion and bell pepper. Just be careful with the ceramic blade as it can chip easily!
Looking for more slow cooker comforting recipes? Try one of these!
- Slow Cooker Thai Yellow Curry
- Slow Cooker Sage and White Bean Soup
- Slow Cooker Sweet Potato Coconut Curry Soup
Or try one of these 10 Easy Vegan Dinners.
If you try this recipe, please let me know! Leave a comment, rate it, and tag your photo with #veggie__chick on Instagram. I just love to see my recipes being made in YOUR kitchen!
Update Notes: This post was originally published in November 2014, but was republished with tips and FAQs in October of 2019.
Slow Cooker Soy Chorizo Chili (Vegan, Gluten Free)Pin Rate
- 2 15-ounce cans diced tomatoes (Sometimes I might use flavored cans of diced tomatoes, such as “Garlic and Olive Oil”, “Fire Roasted”, etc.)
- 1 15-ounce can organic tomato sauce
- 1 medium white or yellow onion – diced
- 1 4.5-ounce can green chiles
- 1 15-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- 1 15-ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 15-ounce can sweet corn (no need to drain)
- 15 cherry tomatoes – halved
- 1 medium green bell pepper – diced
- 1/2 package – 6-ounces Soy Chorizo, casing/outer wrapper removed*, I prefer Trader Joe's brand but you can use other brands of Soy Chorizo or make your own Homemade Soy Chorizo.
- 4 garlic cloves – minced
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika – or regular paprika
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 cup water
- Optional Toppings:
- chopped cilantro
- vegan sour cream
- In a slow cooker, add all ingredients (the order doesn't matter) and stir. Important: be sure to remove the outer casing of the chorizo before adding to the slow cooker.
- Cover and cook on high for 4-5 hours or low for 6-7 hours. When ready, scoop out into a bowl and enjoy! Add crackers, chopped cilantro or even some vegan sour cream. Store this chili in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week.
- Note: you can also cook this on your stovetop. See stovetop instructions in the Notes section below.
- *I use only 1/2 of the 12-ounce Soy Chorizo package, as it’s very spicy and also high in sodium. If you want to add more, you can taste it when it’s almost done cooking and add more if necessary. The soy chorizo should be already cooked (check the package to make sure), so it’s ok to add in at the end of the cooking process. Or, use the remaining chorizo in other recipes, such as a topping for this Spicy Baked Potato with Broccoli and Vegan Queso recipe.
- This recipe makes a lot of chili, around 13 cups total, so you’ll have plenty for leftovers during the week. For a fuller meal, try a scoop of chili on a bed of Roasted Spaghetti Squash.
- If you can’t find Soy Chorizo, you can make it without. But if you do, be sure to double (or triple) up on the spices, as the soy chorizo adds a lot of flavor.