Warm up with a bowl of the BEST Black Bean Chili!
This vegetarian chili recipe is fast and easy enough for the busiest weeknights. Most important though, it's super delicious!
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It's cozy, comfort food season, and I don't know about you, but I'm here for it!
I love a big bowl of chili at this time of year, and this Black Bean Chili is a true classic! It's super flavorful, uses easy to find ingredients, and it's ready super fast.
You are going to love this quick, hearty one pot recipe on busy weeknights (and lazy weekends). It really is stress free to make. And with all its healthy ingredients, it's great for meal prep, too.
Best of all, this recipe is naturally vegetarian and vegan, not to mention dairy free and gluten free. So everyone can enjoy it!
Are you ready to try this crave-worthy chili for yourself? Then keep reading for all the details!
This quick recipe uses basic ingredients ... you probably already have many of them in your pantry. Here's what you'll need:
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil - Feel free to substitute another cooking oil, like canola or vegetable, if you prefer.
- Veggies: Onion and Red Bell Pepper
- Canned Black Beans
- Fire-Roasted Diced Tomatoes
- Tomato Sauce
- Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce - You'll use both the chiles and the sauce they are packed in for this recipe.
- Vegetable Broth - I make my own from Vegetable Bouillon so I always have some on hand.
- Spices - Chili Powder, Cumin, Dried Oregano
- Fresh Cilantro
- Salt (I prefer Kosher salt.)
This chili with black beans is fast cooking, but it has a rich, simmered-all-day quality. That tasty flavor and thick consistency are the result of the perfect blend of spices, minimal cooking liquid, and the tomato sauce, which helps thicken the chili.
I think you're going to love this recipe as-is, but it's also easy to customize depending on your tastes and the ingredients you have on hand. You'll find lots of tips below, along with tons of yummy topping ideas!
You'll Also Need
How to Make Black Bean Chili
Ready to get started? This recipe is super simple to prepare ... here's how to do it:
- Sauté diced onions and bell pepper in olive oil. You want to cook the veggies until they're translucent and starting to brown. Make sure to season the veggies with a little salt, too ... this will start to build the flavors in your chili.
- Add garlic and spices to pot, then cook just until fragrant. Briefly cooking the spices brings out their flavor and should only take about one minute. Don't forget to stir constantly so they don't burn.
- Stir in the black beans, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, chipotle peppers, and adobo sauce. Mix well.
- Simmer until veggies are tender and chili is thickened. Because the recipe doesn't have a lot of liquid to start with, this should only take about 15 to 20 minutes.
Finish the recipe by stirring in some fresh cilantro, then season generously to taste with salt. Wasn't that easy?
Once you've mastered this basic recipe, feel free to customize it to taste. Here are some simple ideas:
- Extra Veggies: Other vegetables like corn, zucchini, fresh tomatoes, carrots, butternut squash, etc. will work great in this recipe. Just keep in mind that if you add extra ingredients, you may need to adjust the cooking time and / or add more liquid so it doesn't get too thick.
- Different Beans: Feel free to use a combination of beans or to substitute other beans in this recipe, such as kidney or pinto.
- Spicier: If you like super spicy chili, try adding another chipotle pepper, additional adobo sauce, roasted hot peppers (fresh or canned), and / or use a spicy chili powder. You could also include fresh chiles (like jalapeños or serranos) ... chop them up and saute them along with the onion and bell pepper.
- Milder: Can't take the heat? Make sure to use a mild chili powder and cut back on the chipotles and adobo sauce.
Before serving, don't forget about the toppings ... they make this tasty vegetarian chili even more delish! Here are some ideas to inspire you:
- Shredded Cheese - Try sharp cheddar, pepper jack, or your fave vegan cheese.
- Chopped Red Onions
- Sliced Green Onions
- Pickled Onions
- Sour Cream (Regular or Non Dairy)
- Diced Avocado
- Chopped Tomatoes
- Sliced or Chopped Olives
- Pickled or Fresh Jalapeño Slices
- Lime Wedges
- Chopped Cilantro
- Corn Chip
- Tortilla Chips
- Hot Sauce - This Secret Aardvark Habanero Sauce is my fave!
Refrigerate any leftovers in an airtight container, and it will keep for up to four days. You can also freeze the chili for one to two months.
This easy Black Bean Veggie Chili makes an excellent one dish meal ... hearty, filling, and nutritious, too. It really is perfect for weeknights!
If you'd like to round out your dinner a bit more though, pair this recipe with cornbread or garlic bread for dipping. A salad would also make great pairing ... try this easy Kale Salad or this quick Chopped Salad.
Looking for more veggie chili ideas? Try one of these delicious recipes next:
- Vegetarian Chili ... a go-to, classic recipe that's loaded with veggies!
- Slow Cooker 3 Bean Chili
- Pumpkin Chili
- Vegetarian White Bean Chili
- Roasted Vegetable Quinoa Chili
Have leftovers? Then you need to make this Easy Frito Pie, too ... it's the perfect recipe for using up extra chili or for entertaining!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Need more help? Checked out these frequently asked questions or leave a comment below.
Yes, you should rinse black beans before adding them to the chili (and drain them well, too). This will ensure the finished recipe has the right texture: thick and hearty.
If you don't have any black beans on hand, you can substitute other beans, like kidney or pinto beans. You may also use a combination of beans for this recipe.
Chili should be very thick and hearty when it's finished cooking. If it seems thin, cook it for a bit longer. You can always add a bit more broth while simmering if it gets too thick.
If your chili needs more flavor, you probably need to add more salt. You can also brighten up the finished recipe by stirring in fresh cilantro, adding a bit of fresh lime juice, or by adding different toppings.
Black Bean Chili
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1 large red pepper, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 4 (15-ounce) cans black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 (14.5-ounce) can fire-roasted diced tomatoes
- 1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
- 1 ½ cups vegetable broth
- 1 to 2 chipotle peppers, minced
- 1 tablespoon adobo sauce (from canned chipotle peppers)
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro
- kosher salt
- toppings of choice, such as shredded cheddar, sour cream, or jalapeños (optional)
- Heat oil in a large dutch oven or soup pot over medium heat.
- Add onions and peppers, then season with salt. Cook until onion turns translucent and begins to brown (about 10 minutes).
- Mix in garlic, chili powder, cumin, and oregano. Cook until fragrant, stirring constantly (about 1 minute).
- Add black beans, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, broth, chipotles, and adobo sauce to pot. Mix well. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, or until veggies are tender and chili has thickened.
- Stir in cilantro and season to taste with salt.
- Serve chili hot with your choice of toppings. Enjoy!