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vegan chilli cornbread pie in a black cast iron pan on a black background topped with chopped coriander.

Vegan Chilli Cornbread Pie

Vegan chilli cornbread pie - this delicious vegan casserole consists of a flavourful three bean chilli topped with a layer of fluffy vegan cornbread. It is a wonderful warming meal that is good all year round.
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword chilli
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 6 people
Author Domestic Gothess


Three Bean Chilli:

  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 brown onion peeled and diced
  • 1 red bell pepper diced
  • 1 medium carrot diced
  • 4 cloves garlic peeled and crushed
  • 1 Tbsp tomato puree
  • 1 tsp chipotle chilli paste
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • ½ tsp chilli powder (optional)
  • ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp soy sauce
  • ½ Tbsp dark brown soft sugar
  • ½ Tbsp cocoa powder
  • 2 400g (14oz) tins chopped tomatoes
  • 240 ml (1 cup) water
  • 1 vegetable stock cube
  • 1 400g (14oz) tin black beans rinsed and drained
  • 1 400g (14oz) tin kidney beans rinsed and drained
  • 1 400g (14oz) tin pinto beans rinsed and drained
  • 150 g (1 cup) frozen sweet corn
  • salt and pepper

Vegan Cornbread:

  • 1 Tbsp ground flaxseed
  • 3 Tbsp warm water
  • 175 g (1 cup + 1 ½ Tbsp) fine cornmeal (polenta)
  • 150 g (1 ¼ cups) plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 250 ml (1 cup) unsweetened non-dairy milk (soy is best)
  • 2 Tbsp maple syrup
  • 40 g (scant ¼ cup) light brown soft sugar (optional)
  • 1 tsp cider vinegar
  • 120 g (½ cup) vegan block butter/margarine (I use Naturli Vegan Block) melted
  • 50 g (1.75 oz / a large handful) pickled jalapenos diced (optional)


  • Heat the olive oil in a large, ovenproof casserole pan and add the onion, pepper and carrot. Fry gently for 10 minutes until softened.
  • Add the crushed garlic, tomato puree, chipotle chilli paste, cumin, coriander, smoked paprika, cinnamon and chilli powder and cook for a couple of minutes while stirring.
  • Add the soy sauce, dark brown sugar, cocoa powder, tinned tomatoes, water, black beans, kidney beans, pinto beans, frozen sweetcorn, vegetable stock and some salt and pepper.
  • Bring the mixture up to a simmer and allow to cook, stirring it every now and again, for half an hour. Taste and add more seasoning as required. (At this point the chilli is ready to be eaten if you aren't making the topping.)
  • Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/gas mark 6.
  • Mix the ground flaxseed with the water and set aside until it goes gloopy.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the cornmeal, plain flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt.
  • In a jug, whisk together the non-dairy milk, maple syrup, light brown soft sugar, cider vinegar and melted vegan block butter.
  • Pour the wet ingredients into the dry along with the flax egg and whisk until no dry lumps remain but be careful not to over-beat the mixture, Fold through the jalapenos if using.
  • Dollop the cornbread mixture over the top of the chilli and spread it level. Bake for 25-30 minutes until the cornbread is golden and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.


  • This vegan chilli cornbread pie is made in a large, ovenproof casserole pan, like a Dutch oven. If you don't have one of those then you can make the chilli in a regular saucepan and transfer it to a large baking dish before adding the cornbread topping.
  • I like my cornbread slightly sweetened but you can omit the brown sugar if you prefer.
  • It is important to use a block vegan margarine/butter, NOT the spreadable kind in a tub which has too high a water content for baking. I use Naturli Vegan Block.
  • The chilli can be made in advance and stored in the fridge. Make and add the cornbread topping just before baking.
  • Any leftovers can be stored in the fridge for three days and reheated in the microwave.
  • The cornbread can also be baked separately in a 20cm/8 inch square greased and lined cake tin at 200C/400F/gas mark 6 for 25-30 minutes until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
  • Once baked and cooled this vegan chilli cornbread pie can be frozen for up to a month. If you have used a metal pan then it can be reheated in the oven straight from frozen. If you used a glass or ceramic dish then you will need to let it defrost first as placing a cold dish in a hot oven can cause it to crack.