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EASY VEGETABLE CHILI (SLOW COOKER OR STOVETOP)

Easy Vegetable Chili is loaded with protein rich beans and tempeh, corn, carrots, tomatoes, quinoa and spices, and makes the BEST and most delicious hearty, vegan chili recipe! Easily customizable with stovetop, slow cooker + Instant Pot options.

top down view of a serving of easy vegetable chili in a white bowl with black rim and spoon, with items surrounding.

Calling all (veggie) chili lovers!

With the cool weather and drizzle season almost here, chili is the perfect remedy for warming up the senses and this easy vegetable chili is sure to hit the spot.

Abundant with vegetables, beans and flavorful spices, it’s a thick and hearty veggie chili that can be cooked in the crockpot or on the stovetop!

It can easily be customized to suit your needs, and is an easy vegan chili recipe that’s low-fat, oil-free, and healthy as can be!

top down view of ingredients to make the best vegetable chili recipe.

A Bit About The Ingredients

This vegetable chili is versatile, and can easily be changed up and adapted to your situation. Feel free to play around with the ingredients, making it your own!

  • Tempeh. I had a block of tempeh that needed to be used up so I’ve added it here. If you don’t have tempeh, feel free to sub in another can of beans. If you’ve never had tempeh I highly recommend picking up a package and trying it in chili. It’s a highly nutritious soy product because of the fermenting process it goes through, and is one of the best soy products you can consume. I see it readily available at all my local grocery stores these days (usually right next to the tofu).
  • Include more veggies. Feel free to add a diced bell pepper for even more veggies, any color will do.
  • Add a chili pepper. Adding a diced jalapeno pepper when cooking would be great too.
  • Use a bottle of dark beer for depth and flavor. I recommend using a 12oz. bottle of Modelo Negra, with 1/2 cup of water (use this in place of the 2 cups of broth/water called for). This chili is on the tomatoey side and the beer will help balance it out.
  • Meal prep. This easy vegetable chili is great for meal prep and tastes even better the next day!

side by side photos showing the process of making easy vegetable chili on the stovetop.

How To Make Vegetable Chili

Either way you cook it, it’s super easy. And the best part, there are no added oils!

  • Slow Cooker: Add the ingredients for your vegetable chili to your slow cooker and give a good stir. Turn the crockpot on ‘high or low’ setting and relax (see recipe card below for full details).
  • Stovetop: If using the stovetop, it’s just as easy. Simply add the ingredients to a large pot and give a good stir (shown above), bring to a boil, reduce heat and cook for about an hour (shown below), stirring occasionally.
  • Instant Pot: To the bowl of the Instant Pot, add all the ingredients and give a good stir. Close and lock the lid, turn the steam valve to SEALED. Manually set the timer, at high pressure, for 11 minutes. Let steam release naturally for 10 minutes. Carefully turn the valve to open and let the remaining steam release.

Once done, the vegetables are tender and the ingredients have had time to mingle together creating a most delicious chili. Now you are ready to serve it up, however you like, with your choice of toppings.

top down view of freshly made vegetable chili in a dutch oven with wooden spoon.

Serving Suggestions

This easy vegan chili is super as is, but is even better with a little something on the side! Here are a few of my favorite options:

How To Store Leftovers

  • Refrigerator: Leftover chili can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 – 6 days in an airtight container.
  • Freezer: It can be stored in the freezer for up to 3 months. To freeze, let cool completely and store in freezer safe containers (affiliate links), leaving 1/2 inch for expansion. Let thaw in the refrigerator before reheating.
  • Reheat: Warm on the stovetop over medium heat until warmed through. Alternatively, reheat in the microwave using 30 – 60 intervals, stirring after each, until warmed through.

top down view of a serving of easy vegetable chili in a white bowl with black rim and wooden spoon.

More Easy Chili Recipes!

If you try this easy vegetable chili recipe, please let me know! Leave a comment and rate it below. I love to hear what you think, or any changes you make.

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EASY VEGETABLE CHILI (SLOW COOKER OR STOVETOP)

Easy vegetable chili is customizable, easy to make using a slow cooker or stovetop, and it’s also oil-free and delicious as can be!

  • Author: Julie | The Simple Veganista
  • Prep Time: 10 min
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4 - 6 1x
  • Category: Entree, Chili
  • Method: Stovetop, Slow-Cooker
  • Cuisine: Vegan

Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 2 large carrots (about 1 cup), peeled and diced
  • 2 celery sticks (about 1 cup), diced
  • 1 can (4oz.) diced green chilis or 1 bell pepper (any color), diced
  • 1 can (14 oz.) diced tomatoes, with juices
  • 1 can (14 oz.) sweet corn, drained
  • 8 oz. package tempeh, crumbled or 1 can (14 oz.) pinto beans
  • 1 can (14 oz) kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (14 oz) black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (6 oz.) tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon chipotle powder or cayenne pepper
  • 2 cups water or vegetable broth
  • 1/2 cup dried quinoa + 1 cup water, optional
  • mineral salt to taste

optional toppings

Instructions

Slow Cooker: Place ingredients, plus 1/2 extra cup of water, into the bottom of a 4 – 6 qt. slow-cooker and give a good stir. Cook on high for 3 – 4 hours, or low for 5 – 7 hours.

Stovetop: Place ingredients in a large dutch oven or pot, give a good stir, bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer for 1 to 1 and 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.

Instant Pot: To the bowl of the Instant Pot, add all the ingredients and give a good stir. Close and lock the lid, turn the steam valve to SEALED. Manually set the timer, at high pressure, for 11 minutes. Let steam release naturally for 10 minutes. Carefully turn the valve to open to finish.

To serve: Serve with toppings of choice. Pairs great with Vegan Cornbread or Jalapeno Cornbread Muffins!

Serves 4 – 6

Store: Leftovers will keep for up to 5 – 6 days in the refrigerator, covered in a container. To keep longer, freeze your chili using freezer safe containers for up to 2 – 3 months.

Notes

If you don’t have tempeh, use 1 can (14 oz.) pinto beans.

Add a jalapeno, seeds removed and diced, when cooking the chili for extra heat and flavor. Add the jalapeno when adding the other vegetables to the pot.

Use a bottle of dark beer for depth and flavor. I recommend using a 12oz. bottle of Modelo Negra, with 1/2 cup of water (use this in place of the 2 cups of broth/water called for). This chili is on the tomatoey side and the beer will help balance it out.

This chili is great served over top a baked sweet potato for variation.

UPDATED: This recipe was updated in Sept. 2019 with 2 changes: Increased the quinoa from 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup, plus added 1 cup of water. Also, the quinoa is now optional. Quinoa is delicious and will make your chili even thicker, while also adding a little extra nutrition.

Keywords: vegetable chili

Updated: Easy Vegetable Chili was originally posted in March 2017, and updated with new photos and helpful tips in September 2019. The only changes made was removing 1/4 cup quinoa and reducing the liquids as noted in the recipe card above.

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12 Comments

  1. Super easy and really flavorful! I realized I was out of tomato paste halfway through but I just threw in a bit of salsa and it worked perfectly in the slow cooker. The whole family gave it great reviews!

  2. Awesome recipe. Turned out great!
    I had to modify some things based on what I had at home.
    Instead of cumin, coriander, or chili powder, I used 2 tsp of cocoa and 3 tbsp of taco seasoning and 3 tsp of garlic powder.
    As someone who likes sweet over spicy, this was the perfect level of heat!

  3. This looks wonderful—-as do the rest of the chili recipes you have on the page! Would you happen to know how I could maybe use the Instant Pot for this? Thank you :)

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      Great question, Ali! I’ve updated the recipe to include Instant Pot instructions. Thank you for asking, as I’m sure it will help others as well. Since we’re not sauteing, I’ve added 1 minute to the cooking time to ensure the onions will be soft. I love using my Instant Pot, but just haven’t got around to updating this one. Please do let me know how it turns out!

  4. So very good! I use a bottle of Modela as suggestion and it was a hit with my boyfriend. Thanks for the great recipe!

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      Yay! Thanks so much for sharing Kylie!

  5. This chili looks really gorgeous!

  6. I saw this highlighted on Facebook today and was like, yes! Super dilemma solved. It makes quite a bit and is very good. I used white onion as I have a ton of them that need used up. Used both tempeh and the pintos and added a can of diced tomatoes. The chipotle powder combined with my pure New Mexico medium red chile powder made it spicy. Topped it off in serving bowls with chopped tomatoes, avoacadoes, and my homemade cilantro lime cashew cream. Very good!

  7. Genevieve says:

    I love the idea of stuffing a sweet potato with chili. It’s still pretty cold here in New York, definitely weather appropriate for a vegetable chili!

    1. Julie | The Simple Veganista says:

      It’s so good and completely satisfying. I know you’re going to love it! Cheers

  8. Liz @ pumpkin & peanut butter says:

    This looks so hearty and filling! I’ve never put tempeh in my chili but I’m sure it’s amazing— adding it to my list to try!

  9. Izzy | pinch of delight says:

    This looks so good – like the title suggests I love how easy it looks! x
    Izzy

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