Black Bean and Sweet Potato Chili Recipe | Easy Vegetarian Dinner
A warm and cozy vegetarian black bean and sweet potato chili recipe with just a hint of cinnamon. This meatless meal is done in 30 minutes and is made in just one pot. Keep is vegan and dairy free, or add your favorite dairy toppings.
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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 and 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.
Want meat in your chili?
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.
Easy 30-Minute Dinner
This vegetarian black bean and sweet potato chili is done very quickly, with limited prep and cook time.
And I think that no matter what stage of life you’re in, an easy, 30 minute meatless meal is very welcome, amiright?
This is dinner ticks all the boxes. 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.
It’s also made in just one pot. Can you see why I like this so much?
So all you need is a large pot, like the one below, and a cooking spoon and you’re set. That makes doing dishes afterward so easy. Win win win.
Want to make it in an Instant Pot?
You can totally make this chili in an Instant Pot.
Just saute the onion in the Instant pot, add in all of the ingredients, stir it together, and set to pressure cook for 3 minutes.
Yep. 3 minutes.
Just do a quick release and you’re ready to eat.
Keep an eye on your sweet potato chili
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 mushy.
And mashed potato chili is NOT 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.
A note on beans
You can use any kind of beans you have on hand! I just use a lot of black beans around here since I buy organic ones from Costco for such a great price. You can use pinto or kidney for half or all of the black beans called for in this recipe.
Toppings (dairy free, gluten free, or whatever you need)
Depending on how you top it, you can totally keep this a vegan chili if that’s what you need. I have a mix of ideas so you can keep it vegan, dairy free, corn free, or full of it all 😉
- shredded cheese (we buy this pasture-raised brand or other local pasture raised cheese)
- sour cream (again, pasture-raised or local when we can)
- tortilla chips
- corn (using a handful of frozen corn is a great way to cool it down quickly for little kids…or you!)
- fresh tomatoes
- sliced black olives
- hot sauce
Enjoy this easy meatless chili. I like to serve it with this homemade Skillet Corn Bread Recipe. It tastes like Jiffy but is so much better for you…and it’s gluten free!
- 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, cilantro
- In a large pot over medium heat, sauté the onion and carrot in the oil until soft and the onion is translucent. If you want to add bell pepper, sauté alongside here
- Stir in the garlic and spices and cook about 30 seconds until fragrant
- Add in your sweet potatoes, broth, water, tomatoes, rinsed beans. 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 heat
- 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 fork soft, it’s done!
- Top with your favorite toppings, and serve
Use frozen corn to cool off chili for little kids (or yourself!). It works great without watering the chili down.