4th Annual Vegan Chili Cook-Off Event Recap

This year marked the 4th Annual Vegan Chili Cook-Off. I am stoked that I was finally able to make it this year. This was definitely a great event for any plant based eater or general foodie. Here is an event re-cap in case you missed it or if you just want to relive its glory.


The Event

As usual, the event was held at Tony’s Darts Away. Tony’s Darts Away is a vegan friendly bar located in Burbank, CA. The $10 entrance included five 3oz tastings (although some were much larger) and a voting ballot. We paid at the door, picked up our ballots and headed inside.

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Once inside, the line split in two. On the left was Plant Food and Wine, The Springs and Sage Organic Vegan Bistro. To the right you had Plant Food for People and Rabbit Hole Foods. We got there shortly after noon. No surprise that the place was pretty packed. It always makes me happy to see successful vegan events. This year they were able to provide extra space on the patio (which they borrowed from the neighbors). This additional seating area really helped. We came hungry so we immediately headed for a bowl of chili. Here is what was being offered in the order that we had them.


The Competitors


Smoked Sweet Potato and Bourbon Chili

Chef Roy Elam
Plant Food and Wine

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Spiked Chipotle Chili

Chef Michael Falso
The Springs

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Jackfruit Carnitas Chili

Chef Mollie Engelhart
Sage Organic Vegan Bistro

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Chunky but Funky Soul Bean Chili

Chefs Genise & Jeremy Castaneda
Plant Food For People

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Beyond Southwest Enchanted White Queen Chili
Chef Rosanna Caira
The Rabbit Hole Cafe

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Honestly, they were all really good. Vegan chili is definitely underrated. It’s a great way to pack in a ton of protein and fiber. Plant Food and Wine was a great one to start with. It had a great smokey flavor and the toppings pulled everything together nicely. The Rabbit Hole Cafe also gets bonus points from me for having lime wedges and ghost chili powder. However, you really couldn’t go wrong with any of the chilis.

In addition to the peoples choice vote, there was also a judges vote. The judges were vegan chefs, bloggers and cookbook authors that are well known in the veg community.


The Judges

Tal Ronnen, owner and chef of Crossroads Kitchen
Laura Beck, Vegansaurus
Jackie Sobon, Vegan Yack Attack
Caroline Concha, last years winner, Tony’s Darts Away Chef


The Results

JUDGE’S CHOICE WINNER
Smoked Sweet Potato and Bourbon Chili
Chef Roy Elam
Plant Food and Wine

PEOPLE’S CHOICE WINNER
Spiked Chipotle Chili
Chef Michael Falso
The Springs


The event was definitely a success. What a great way to spread the word about veggie food. If you plan on going in the future, I recommend getting there early. We were only a few minutes late but by the time we left one of the chili’s had already run out. Planning ahead is also a great way to snag a table or spot at the bar. That way you can enjoy all the chilis with their optional beer pairings.

I have a feeling this event will be around for years to come. I can’t wait for 2017 to do it all again.


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