Tempeh Barley Chili

Tempeh Barley Chili

Tempeh Barley Chili is a quick 30-minute plant-based chili that is smoky and delicious! Using quick pearl barley and tempeh allows for an easy meal to prep that is nutrient-dense. For a vegetarian option, substitute the plant-based dairy substitutes for dairy options. For a meat version, replace the tempeh with chicken!


Serves: 4-5 Time: 30 minutes

Tempeh Barley Chili

  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 small green bell pepper, diced
  • 2-3 celery stalks, diced
  • 1 package tempeh, cubed
  • 14.5 oz can (1) petite diced tomatoes
  • x2 (8 oz) can tomato sauce
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 1 Tbs olive oil
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 2 Tbs minced chipotle pepper in adobo sauce (optional)
  • 1 cup quick pearl barley
  • Optional toppings: plant-based cheddar cheese, sour cream, chopped scallions, hot sauce


  1. Begin by preparing your vegetables.
  2. Then, in a medium-large pot, set heat to high and add the olive oil.
  3. Once hot, begin sautéeing the onion, bell pepper, and celery. Cook together stirring frequently on high for 5 minutes.
  4. Next, add the tempeh and continue to stir together for another 5 minutes.
  5. Then, add in the tomatoes, vegetable broth, and tomato sauce. Refill one of the tomato sauce cans with water and add that to the pot as well. If you’d like a spicy and smoky chili, add the chipotle in adobo.
  6. Add in the seasonings and barely.
  7. Bring the chili to a boil then cover with a lid and reduce heat to low, allowing it to simmer for about 20-25 minutes.
  8. After 20-25 minutes, the chili should be ready. The barley will soak up a lot of liquid, so you may add more vegetable broth if the chili is too thick. Taste and adjust seasoning as desired.
  9. Remove chili from heat once cooked.
  10. Serve with optional toppings if desired and enjoy!

Nutrition Information

Nutrition Disclaimer

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