Incredibly Delicious Vegan Chili – Connoisseurus Veg

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by Sil Pancho

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01.01.2022


Packed with veggies, spices, and beans, this hearty vegan chili will knock your socks off! Easy to make in the stove or Instant Pot, and perfect for feeding a crowd.

Bowls of Vegan Chili Topped with Avocado with a Blue Pot in the Background

Everyone needs a go-to chili recipe! Personally, I love experimenting with chili recipes by including all kinds of fun veggies, spices, veggie proteins, and maybe beer…but there’s definitely something to be said for good old classic vegetarian chili.

This is my basic, easy vegan chili recipe. But don’t be fooled: this chili is absolute DELICIOUS. It’s seriously loaded with scrumptious Tex-Mex flavor and perfect for pretty much all tastes.

Feeding a group of skeptical meat-eaters? Give them this chili! Need something delicious for meal prep that won’t bore you to death by the end of the week? This chili is what you need!

Jump to:

What You’ll Need

Wooden Table Set with Two Bowls of Vegan Chili, Spoons, Drinking Glass and Half an Avocado

Here’s what you’ll need to whip up a pot of this vegetarian chili!

  • Olive oil. You can substitute another high-heat oil if you’d like, such as corn, canola, or avocado oil.
  • Onion. We’re using a plain old yellow onion, although a red or white onion would also work just fine!
  • Bell peppers. The recipe calls for one red pepper and one green, but feel free to switch things up and use any combination of pepper colors.
  • Carrots.
  • Garlic.
  • Spices. You’ll need mild chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika and cayenne pepper. Feel free to omit the cayenne pepper for a milder meatless chili!
  • Diced tomatoes. The recipes calls for fire roasted tomatoes, which will really pack some flavor into your chili, but regular diced tomatoes will work in a pinch.
  • Beans. We’re using canned beans. The recipe calls for one can of black, one can of kidney, and one can of pinto beans. You’re totally welcome to switch things up and use other varieties like lentils and chickpeas though!
  • Frozen corn.
  • Salt & pepper.
  • Tomato paste. You’ll only need this ingredient if you decide to make Instant Pot vegan chili. It helps to thicken the stew!

How to Make Vegan Chili

The following is a detailed photo tutorial on how to make this dish. Scroll all the way down if you’d like to skip right to the recipe!

Stovetop Chili

  • Start by heating up some olive oil in a large pot. Once the oil is hot, add your veggies: onion, peppers, and carrots. Sweat the veggies until they start to soften up.
  • Add your garlic and spices: chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika, and cayenne pepper. Cook everything until the garlic and spices become very fragrant. Be careful not to overcook the mixture at this point, which can burn the spices and make your veggie chili taste bitter!
Steps 1 and 2 for Making Vegan Chili: Sweat Veggies, and Add Spices
  • Add your beans and tomatoes to the pot. Bring the chili up to a simmer and let it cook for at least a half hour. Feel free to let it simmer on low all day though! A longer simmer time will give you a thicker chili with milder flavors. Add water or vegetable broth it if becomes too thick while it cooks
  • Stir in some thawed frozen corn during the last minute or so.
Steps 3 and 4 for Making Vegan Chili: Add Tomatoes and Beans, and Add Corn
  • Easy, right?! Season your chili with salt and pepper to taste when it’s finished, then dig in!

Instant Pot Vegetarian Chili

Vegan Chili In an Instant Pot with Wooden Spoon
  • Use the “sauté” function on your Instant Pot to sweat the onion, peppers, and carrots in some olive oil. Add the garlic and spices during the last minute or so, then press “cancel.”
  • Now stir in a cup of water, then add your tomatoes, followed by the beans. Don’t stir! The water and tomatoes need to be on the bottom to prevent the burn warning from going off. Close the pot, set the valve to “sealing” and use the “manual” or “pressure cook” function. Set the cook time to 10 minutes.
  • Carefully move the valve to the “venting” position when the timer goes off. Let the pressure release completely, remove the lid, and stir in the corn.
  • Stir in some tomato paste to thicken your vegetarian chili. This step is important because chili cooked in the Instant Pot doesn’t come out as thick as stove top chili. You also can press the “bean/chili” button and let it simmer for a bit to get ever thicker.
  • Season the chili with salt and pepper, ladle it into bowls and enjoy!

Leftovers & Storage

Leftover chili keeps great! Store it in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 3 days, or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Tip: If you find yourself getting bored with your chili leftovers, try repurposing it! Instead of serving it as a stew, try topping a baked potato (or sweet potato), piling it on a veggie dog (plant-based chili is great on carrot dogs), or making veggie chili fries.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is this chili gluten-free?

It sure is!

Is this chili spicy?

The cayenne pepper gives it a little heat. If you’re nervous about that, just leave it out. For extra heat, use extra cayenne, or season the chili with some hot sauce before serving.

What are some good toppings for vegan chili?

Try fresh scallions, cilantro, avocado, shredded vegan cheese, crushed tortilla chips, vegan sour cream or cashew cream.

Can I make this chili with dried beans?

You can, but you’ll need to soak and cook them first. Try this bean prep-method.

How can I add texture to vegan chili?

Try adding crumbled tofu, tempeh, or a crumbled meat substitute like Beyond Beef Crumbles.

Can I make this chili in a slow cooker?

Absolutely! Add all of the ingredients (except salt and pepper) to your Crockpot and cook the chili for 2 to 3 hours on high, or 5 to 6 hours on low. Be sure to keep an eye on it since slow cookers can vary in their heat levels and cooking speed! Season it with salt and pepper before serving.

More Hearty Vegan Soups & Stews

Two Bowls of Vegan Chili on a Wooden Surface

Like this recipe? If so, be sure to follow me on Facebook, Pinterest or Instagram, or subscribe to my newsletter. And please stop back and leave me a review and rating below if you make it!

Bowl of Vegan Chili topped with scallions and avocado slices.

Incredibly Delicious Vegan Chili

Packed with veggies, spices, and beans, this hearty vegan chili will knock your socks off! Easy to make in the stove or Instant Pot, and perfect for feeding a crowd.

Ingredients

  • 2
    tablespoons
    olive oil
  • 1
    large onion,
    diced
  • 1
    medium red bell pepper,
    diced
  • 1
    medium green bell pepper,
    diced
  • 2
    medium carrots,
    diced
  • 5
    garlic cloves,
    minced
  • 2
    tablespoons
    mild chili powder
  • 2
    tablespoons
    ground cumin
  • 1
    teaspoon
    smoked paprika
  • ¼
    teaspoon
    cayenne pepper,
    or to taste
  • 1
    cup
    water
    (Instant Pot only)
  • 3
    (14 ounce or 400 gram) cans
    fire roasted tomatoes
    (regular canned tomatoes work too!)
  • 1
    (14 ounce or 400 gram) cans
    black beans,
    drained and rinsed
  • 1
    (14 ounce or 400 gram) can
    kidney beans,
    drained and rinsed
  • 1
    (14 ounce or 400 gram) can
    pinto beans,
    drained and rinsed
  • 1 ½
    cups
    frozen corn,
    thawed
  • ¼
    cup
    tomato paste
    (Instant Pot only, optional)
  • Salt and pepper,
    to taste

Instructions

Stovetop Instructions

  1. Coat the bottom of a large pot with the oil and place it over medium heat.

  2. Give the oil a minute to heat up, then add the onion, peppers, and carrots. Sweat the veggies until they begin to soften, about 10 minutes, stirring frequently.

  3. Stir in the garlic, chili powder, cumin, paprika, and cayenne. Continue cooking and stirring until the mixture becomes very fragrant, about 1 minute.

  4. Stir in the beans and tomatoes along with their juices. Bring the chili to a boil, lower the heat and let it simmer for about 30 minutes, until the veggies are soft and the chili has thickened, stirring occasionally.

  5. Stir in the corn and cook the chili for another minute, just to heat the corn.

  6. Remove the pot from heat and season the chili with salt and pepper to taste.

  7. Ladle into bowls and serve.

Instant Pot Method

  1. Press the “sauté” button on your Instant Pot then add the oil.

  2. Give the oil a minute to heat up, then add the onion, bell peppers and carrots.

  3. Sweat the vegetables for about 5 minutes, until they begin to soften up.

  4. Add the garlic, chili powder, cumin, paprika, and cayenne pepper. Continue cooking until the mixture becomes very fragrant, about 1 minute. Hit the “cancel” button.

  5. Stir in the water. Add the tomatoes, then and add the beans on top of the tomatoes. Do not stir.

  6. Place the lid on your Instant Pot and set the valve to the “sealing” position. Press the “pressure cook” or “manual” button and set the pressure to high. Set the chili to cook for 10 minutes.

  7. When the chili has finished cooking, carefully move the valve to the “venting” position. Let the pressure release completely.

  8. Remove the lid from the Instant Pot and stir in the corn and tomato paste, if using. Let the chili sit for a bit to thicken up, if desired.

  9. Season the chili with salt and pepper to taste.

  10. Ladle into bowls and serve.

Nutrition Facts

Incredibly Delicious Vegan Chili

Amount Per Serving (1.5 cups)

Calories 246
Calories from Fat 52

% Daily Value*

Fat 5.8g9%

Saturated Fat 0.8g4%

Sodium 348mg15%

Potassium 866mg25%

Carbohydrates 40.6g14%

Fiber 12g48%

Sugar 7g8%

Protein 11.5g23%

Calcium 106mg11%

Iron 5mg28%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.





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