Vegetarian Chili (Vegan, Gluten Free)

Originally known as chili con carne which is taken from the Spanish, meaning “peppers with meat.” Traditional versions are made, minimally, from chili peppers, garlic, onions, and cumin, along with chopped or ground beef. Beans and tomatoes have become frequent additions to this classic Tex- Mex dish. In fact, Chili con carne is the official dish of the U.S. state of Texas due to bordering Mexico which has influenced the Southwest significantly in regards to cuisine.

Tomatoes were not part of the original recipe and not everyone uses it in their dish, but since I have received over 20 pounds of tomatoes in the last month…. why not?? Plus my version is a stovetop vegetarian chili with a medley of assorted vegetables. I adapted this recipe and tweaked it several times until it has come out just perfect with the blend of just the right amount of spice, sweetness and the balance of vegetables to beans.

So Break out your soup pot and fix up a batch of this delicious, spicy vegetarian chili today. It’s ready in no time, and packed with vegetables, beans – and flavor. This chili is SO easy to make and you can empty out the fridge with the glutton of veggies on the verge of turning. A colorful, satisfying bowl of chili that packs plenty of flavor — even for the most dedicated meat eaters will be satisfied due to the high protein from the beans. This yields a lot which is great because chili tastes even better when refrigerated overnight to seal in the flavor. Serve with corn bread, tacos or or over your favorite rice. Serve into a large platter, garnish with cilantro and adorn with sliced avocados.

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 3 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1 1/2 inch cubes
  • 6 carrots, peeled and cubed
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 green bell peppers, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 6 tomatoes, coarsely chopped or 1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 (15 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro, for garnish

Serves 6


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Stir in the onion, and season with bay leaves, cumin, oregano, salt and coriander. Cook and stir until onion is tender, then mix in the sweet potatoes, carrots, celery, green bell peppers, jalapeno peppers, and garlic. When vegetables are heated through, reduce heat to low, cover pot, and simmer 5 minutes.
  2. Mix the tomatoes into the pot with sugar and stir in the black beans.  Add the water, and bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer 45 minutes.

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