Even the raging carnivores in your life will be satisfied with this easy vegetarian chili. I know this because I tested it out on my very own raging carnivore and he was like, “If this is what it tastes like, I don’t even need the meat.” So there you have it.
TBH, I don’t think the meat adds much flavor anyway. I feel like it’s just in traditional chili because people think you need meat in everything, but we all know that’s just not the case! Seriously, give this one a try and decide for yourself if you ever need the meat in your chili again. It’s still packed with protein and fiber because of those awesome, healthy kidney beans. Plus, the potatoes add a bit of starchiness making this vegetarian chili rich and hearty.
Bonus: This is excellent served with my Sriracha Polenta Cakes for dipping.
Want to read everything you’ve ever wanted to know about How to Make Chili? <– Check that baby out.
Easy Vegetarian Chili
- 1 tbsp. grapeseed or coconut oil
- 2 small yellow potatoes, chopped
- 1 small to medium onion, chopped finely
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 6 oz. can tomato paste*
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 can (28 oz) diced tomatoes, undrained
- 2 cans (19 oz) kidney beans, undrained
- ¼-1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes, as desired
- Heat oil over medium heat in a large pot.
- Add chopped yellow potatoes, onions and salt and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Next add in the tomato paste, chili powder and cumin. Cook 1 minute, then add a little of the bean liquid or tomato juice so the pan doesn’t scorch. Slowly continue to add in a bit more liquid until it coats the bottom of the pot, stirring to incorporate. Add in garlic and stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
- Add the beans, diced tomatoes and remaining liquid from both and bring heat up to medium-high until it starts to boil. Immediately turn heat down to medium-low and simmer 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Taste and adjust seasonings, if necessary. Try a potato to make sure it’s cooked through. Stir in crushed red pepper flakes and serve.
You could swap out one can of kidney beans for great northern white beans, if you'd like a two-bean chili.
If you like sriracha, swap the crushed red pepper flakes out and replace them with ¼ tsp. sriracha. Still stir in at the end so the flavor doesn't cook out.
The best part of chili? The toppings—DUH! If you’re not dairy free you could always add a dollop of sour cream or a sprinkle of cheese. For vegans, diced avocado is a great creamy substitute with healthy fats. For everyone: crushed tortilla chips and sliced green onions. Garnish with a lime to cool it down. Awww yeah.
The other best thing about chili? It’s even better as leftovers. I love making this vegetarian chili on the weekend and eating it for lunch at work during the week.