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The best vegetarian chilli recipe

The best vegetarian chilli recipe

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  • Recipes
  • Dish type
  • Main course
  • Stew and casserole

It's ready in just under an hour and packed with so much flavour! Some people even say this is the best vegetarian chilli in the world!

1470 people made this

IngredientsServes: 8

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 tablespoons dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 2 celery stalks, sliced
  • 2 fresh green peppers, chopped
  • 2 jalapeno chilli peppers, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 225g chilli peppers in a jar, drained and sliced
  • 650g vegetarian mince
  • 5 (400g) tins chopped tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons chilli powder
  • 1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 (400g) tin kidney beans, drained
  • 1 (400g) tin chickpeas, drained
  • 1 (400g) tin black beans, drained
  • 1 (400g) tin sweetcorn, drained

MethodPrep:15min ›Cook:1hr ›Ready in:1hr15min

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Stir in the onion, and season with bay leaves, cumin, oregano, and salt. Cook and stir until onion is tender, then mix in the celery, green peppers, jalapeno peppers, garlic and green chilli peppers. When vegetables are heated through, mix in the vegetarian mince or quorn. Reduce heat to low, cover pot, and simmer 5 minutes.
  2. Mix the tomatoes into the pot. Season chilli with chilli powder and pepper. Stir in the kidney beans, chickpeas and black beans. Bring to the boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer 45 minutes. Stir in the corn, and continue cooking 5 minutes before serving.

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Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(1931)

Reviews in English (1427)

by calead910

Hi everyone this is my recipe! Thanks for all the great reviews however they have made a misprint in the submission. It should read 3 large cans of whole tomatoes, crushed by hand NOT 3 tomatoes, that would make this very spicy as well as very thick. I don't remember if I wrote this part as well, but I usually drain the 2 cans of beans, and I leave the liquid of the rem. cans. Luckily not many have been effected by the mistake. thanks again.-24 Jun 2004

by Destie

Excellent chili.Just a note to cooks who are worried about sodium intake. In response to previous posters, the liquid beans are canned in is very high in sodium. Canned beans should always be drained and rinsed for a healthier meal.-02 Feb 2006

by Kate

I understand that this says "spicy" in the description, but I think that's an understatement. I found this to be WAY too spicy. I think that the spiciness overshadowed the other flavors. I served this to my family and no one was able to make it past 1/5 of the bowl, including myself, because it was just too spicy. It would be good if you cut out 90% of the chili powder & used 1 or less Jalapeno.-27 May 2006

The Best-Ever Crock-Pot Vegetarian Chili Recipe

Kiersten Hickman/Eat This, Not That!

Just because a meal doesn't have meat in it doesn't mean it can't be a hearty one! This crock-pot vegetarian chili is stocked with all sorts of filling foods you'll love mixing together in the slow cooker.

This vegetarian crock-pot chili recipe is made with two different kinds of beans: black and kidney beans. Add in the sweet corn, a sweet potato, onion, and a slice of homemade cornbread (which you can easily throw together using a baking mix), and this crock-pot meal will be a delicious, vegetarian alternative to the real thing.

Need some extra protein?

If you're looking for some extra protein and you do eat meat, you could always add in some chicken breast or beef chuck to the chili. Simply dice some up and add it in on the bottom of the slow cooker before adding in the other ingredients. You could even cook it using chicken stock or beef stock to give it that particular flavor.

However, protein doesn't always have to come from meat! You could always add in soy chorizo instead, giving it that extra vegetarian protein without needing to add in real meat.

Makes 6 servings

Homemade Vegetable Chili With Carrots and Broccoli

Load up your homemade chili with plenty of healthy vegetables. This meatless chili with lots of vegetables is another easy homemade vegetarian chili recipe that will help you get your five-a-day servings of fresh vegetables. Great for vegans!

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Here’s What’s To Love

This vegetarian chili is all the good things that I’m looking for:

  • thick and hearty and “meaty”, like a standard chili texture
  • beans optional – add if you like them, leave out if you don’t
  • big, big, big happy flavor
  • packed with a variety of veggies
  • easy to make
  • makes awesome leftovers
  • meatless!

If you’re vegan, don’t you worry – this is also a VEGAN chili if you just watch your toppings. Avocado, pickled red onion, radishes, tortilla chips… we got you, vegans. Also: see our Instant Pot Pumpkin Walnut Chili recipe – it’s real good.

I am not a vegetarian or vegan but I hope it’s obvious that I think creative plant-based cooking is so fun and I love the positive impact it has on our bodies and the earth. ♡ You can be all kinds of everything (vegan, vegetarian, or none, IMHO) and 100% enjoy this.

Goals for the rest of the month: more vegetables, and more chili nights!

Recipe Summary

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 cup chopped onions
  • ¾ cup chopped carrots
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup chopped green bell pepper
  • 1 cup chopped red bell pepper
  • ¾ cup chopped celery
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 ½ cups chopped fresh mushrooms
  • 1 (28 ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes with liquid, chopped
  • 1 (19 ounce) can kidney beans with liquid
  • 1 (11 ounce) can whole kernel corn, undrained
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 ½ teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 ½ teaspoons dried basil

Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Saute onions, carrots, and garlic until tender. Stir in green pepper, red pepper, celery, and chili powder. Cook until vegetables are tender, about 6 minutes.

Stir in mushrooms, and cook 4 minutes. Stir in tomatoes, kidney beans, and corn. Season with cumin, oregano, and basil. Bring to a boil, and reduce heat to medium. Cover, and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.


    • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, plus more for frying (about 2 cups)
    • 3/4 cup mild or medium chunky corn and tomato salsa (not corn and black bean salsa, which usually has a puréed bean base)
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
    • 1 teaspoon chili powder
    • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
    • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
    • 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed, drained
    • 1 (15-ounce) can pinto beans, rinsed, drained
    • 1 (15-ounce) can red kidney beans, rinsed, drained
    • 1 (15-ounce) can puréed tomatoes or tomato sauce
    • 3 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
    • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more
    • 1/4 teaspoon (or more) freshly ground black pepper
    • 2 (5𔃄") corn tortillas, sliced into 1/4"-wide strips
    • Sliced pickled jalapeños (for serving optional)
  1. Special Equipment
    • A deep-fry thermometer

Vegetarian Chilli Ingredients & Cooking Tips

  • Veggies: I start by added onion, celery and garlic. They add great flavour and are a starting point for many of my meals. I also add red bell pepper (capsicum), and zucchini (courgette) but I don’t always stick to this vegetable combination. You can add more or fewer vegetables depending on taste or what you have available. If you like a sweeter chilli, then you can try adding some grated carrot or a small sweet potato. If your child doesn’t like too much texture then you can mince or grate the vegetables. They will cook down and disintegrate into the chilli.
  • Veggie stock:If cooking for a baby/young child I recommend you use homemade stock to help keep sodium levels down. If you aren’t vegetarian chicken stock also works great in the recipe. You may need to add in more/less according to how soupy you like your chilli to be.
  • Diced tomatoes: I use diced tomatoes but if you, or your kids, prefer a smoother texture you could replace with passata.
  • Beans: I added one can of red kidney beans and one can of chickpeas but any canned beans will work. You can reduce to one can if you prefer a less “beany” chilli.
  • Lentils: Adding lentils makes the chilli a bit more “meaty” and less like a soup. I used red split lentils, which soften into the chilli. If you would prefer the lentils to hold their shape then substitute the red split lentils with green or brown lentils.
  • Seasoning: A little smoked paprika and cumin give this chilli a lovely flavour but adding some salt to the chilli really brings out the flavours. Remove your baby’s portion and then salt to taste.

Kid Friendly Vegetarian Chili

2 tbsp olive oil
2 shallots, roughly chopped
1 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp cocoa powder
2 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp chili powder
1 tablespoon peanut butter (if you have a nut allergy you can skip this ingredient or substitute with a seed butter)
3 red peppers, chopped into 1/2 inch pieces
2 sweet potatoes (total 10 ounces), chopped into 1/2 inch pieces (smaller if you have picky potato eaters, * see the note below)
handful of little yellow potatoes, halved
2 x 19 fl oz cans mixed beans (chick peas, black beans, butter beans)
1 x 28 fl oz can whole plum tomatoes
1 x 28 fl oz can diced plum tomatoes
handful of cilantro stalks
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup sour cream

In a cast iron dutch oven…if you don’t have a dutch oven, a large flat bottomed pot will suffice…heat oil over medium-high heat. Toss in the shallots, cumin, cocoa, paprika and peanut butter. Cook the onions and spices until the onions soften and the peanut butter melts. You will have a dark, onion paste.

Add in the peppers, sweet potatoes and yellow potatoes. Toss the peppers and potatoes in the paste until they are coated.

Add beans (with their liquid), tomatoes (with their liquid), cilantro stalks and salt. Stir until all the ingredients are combined. Bring the chilli to a boil and then drop to a simmer. Simmer for 1-2 hours…until the potatoes are soft.

Serve the chilli with shredded cheddar cheese and sour cream.

Now, what does “kid friendly” mean? I have two kids – one kid devoured the chilli and even took a thermos full for lunch the next day. The other kid picked her way around the sweet potatoes. I’ll take that. She loved the flavours…not the chunky potatoes. Lesson learned, next time I’ll chop the potatoes smaller. If you have a picky potato eater…chop those sweet potatoes smaller. Kid approved!

With smoked paprika, quality cocoa powder, fresh coriander and fresh chillies, this vegetarian recipe is big on flavour! Serving it up with cheesy jacket potatoes makes this an epic veggie feast.

The king of barbecue shuns meat for gorgeous roasted sweet potato. No beef? No problem!


  1. Radi

    I think this is the admirable thought

  2. Ayaan

    Your notes made a huge impression on me, made me think differently. Continue your creative search, and I will follow you!

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