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The Hairy Bikers' veggie chilli with cornmeal dumplings

The Hairy Bikers / 31 October 2019

This vegetarian chilli recipe from The Hairy Bikers is topped with scrumptious cornmeal and sweetcorn dumplings.

Hairy Bikers' veggie chilli dumplings
Hairy Bikers' veggie chilli dumplings with oatmeal dumplings

Cooking time

1 hour




  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 green pepper, diced
  • 1 red pepper, diced
  • 2 celery sticks, diced
  • 2 jalepeño chillies, finely diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tbsp ground cumin
  • 25g red lentils, well rinsed
  • 750ml vegetable stock
  • 400ml coconut milk
  • 1 head of baby spring greens, shredded
  • 2 x 400g cans of black or pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Salt and black pepper

Cornmeal dumplings

  • 150g self-raising flour
  • 75g chilled butter, diced
  • 125g fine cornmeal
  • 125g sweetcorn, defrosted if frozen
  • 50ml buttermilk
  • 1 egg

To serve

  • 100g vegetarian Cheddar cheese, grated
  • Chopped fresh coriander


We do like a dumpling and these sweetcorn ones are just right with our veggie chilli. There are lots of great flavours here and this is a good filling feast for hungry hordes.

Heat the oil in a large flameproof casserole dish with a lid and add the onion, peppers, celery and chillies. Cook over a medium heat until the vegetables have started to soften, then stir in the garlic, bay leaves, cumin and red lentils. Season generously with salt and pepper, then pour in the vegetable stock.

Bring to the boil and leave for 5 minutes, then turn down the heat and continue to simmer until the red lentils have softened. Add the coconut milk, spring greens and beans and cook until the spring greens are tender and the lentils have collapsed and thickened the sauce. Taste for seasoning and add the lime juice.

To make the dumplings, put the flour into a bowl with a pinch of salt. Rub in the butter until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs, then mix in the cornmeal, sweetcorn, buttermilk and egg.

Bring everything together into a firm dough, then divide into 12 pieces. Roll them into balls.

Arrange the dumplings over the chilli and cover. Cook over a medium heat for about 25 minutes until the dumplings are well risen and glossy. Serve the chilli with grated cheese and plenty of chopped coriander.

Hairy Bikers One Pot Wonders

The Hairy Bikers’ One Pot Wonders by Si King and Dave Myers is published by Seven Dials in hardback at £22, photography by Andrew Hayes-Watkins

For more yummy recipe ideas from Si and Dave visit the Hairy Bikers and Hairy Dieters recipe hub


The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated. The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.