I used to NEVER eat sweet potatoes. Especially not in my chili. Sweet potato chili? Nah. I was a die-hard traditional chili girl. But life keeps on changing, man.
As a family, we decided a couple years ago to cut back on our meat consumption for various reasons, and I was finding it difficult to add hearty, nutritious, not always tofu-filled dinners to our meal plan. As I scoured the internet (ok, Pinterest) for recipes, sweet potatoes kept popping up all over the place! So I decided I’d do my best to learn how to cook them in a tasty way. Apparently it’s really easy, I just didn’t know sweet potato outside of sweet potato pie at Thanksgiving…which, don’t judge me…was not my favorite.
Sweet potatoes really are an excellent, nutritious filler, and I now incorporate them into many meals.
So whether you’re a vegetarian or you just want a meatless dinner option, this chili is for you. And if you’ve just gotta have meat in your chili, you can always cook up some ground turkey or beef with the onions, and it would go super well. This vegetarian sweet potato chili is perfect for a cool, crisp day, with all that sweet potato, chili spice, and hint of cinnamon making it so warming and comforting.
I’m now a fan of sweet potatoes in my chili.
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This vegetarian sweet potato chili is also done very quickly, with limited prep and cook time.
That is SUCH a great combo in my book. Delicious, nutritious, budget friendly, quick to throw together…oh, that’s the dream. I’ve even added in some zucchini and diced bell pepper, and it’s turned out great. Feel free to veggie it up if that’s your thing.
The only warning I’d throw out there is that you really don’t want to leave this to cook TOO long. The sweet potatoes are absolutely delicious…until they get TOO mushy. Mashed potato chili isn’t my favorite. So, just keep an eye on it. I’ve never had a problem reheating it the next day and having mushy potatoes. They stay great when cooked right the first time. It’s just that one time I left it to simmer for a few HOURS and realized that’s a no-no.
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 large carrot, diced (minced? Finely diced? I don’t know terminology, I just do the things. Cut them into small pieces)
- 1 T oil or grass-fed butter
- 1 tsp minced garlic
- 1 medium sweet potato, 4 cups, peeled and cut into 1 inch chunks
- 2 cups vegetable broth (if not vegetarian, chicken broth works as well)
- 1 ½ cups water
- 2 cans diced tomatoes, 14.5oz cans
- 2 cans beans, 15oz, drained and rinsed well (I like to use 1 can black beans and 1 can kidney beans, but you can use whatever you like!)
- 1 T chili powder
- 2 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp paprika
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- ½ tsp oregano
- 2 tsp salt, or to taste
- 1 tsp black pepper, or to taste
- Optional: 1 cup organic frozen corn
- Topping suggestions: Avocado, sour cream, cheese, crushed tortilla chips
- In a large pot over medium heat, sauté the onion and carrot in the oil until soft and the onion is translucent
- Stir in the garlic and cook about 30 seconds until fragrant
- Add in your sweet potatoes, broth, water, tomatoes, rinsed beans, and spices. If you’re adding corn, go ahead and add that now, too!
- Give it all a good stir, cover, and bring to a low boil on medium high
- Allow to boil for 5 minutes, then reduce the heat to medium-low and allow to simmer for 10-20 minutes
- Stir every few minutes, checking on the sweet potatoes with a fork to ensure they don’t get too mushy
- As soon as the sweet potatoes are soft, it’s done!
- Top with your favorite toppings, and serve
Mom hack to help cool it off quickly for kiddos (or yourself!) add in a handful of frozen corn. It will cool it off without making it watery like ice cubes
What do you think? Are you a traditional chili fan? Would you give sweet potato chili a try?