Skip the meat and still enjoy a protein-packed meal with a fast and fresh recipe for The Best Vegetarian Chili.
Chili is a mainstay at our house, and as odd as it may sound from this southern California girl, we actually eat it in some form or another during every season. Winter? Slow Cooker Chicken Chili. Spring? Chipotle Chili con Carne. Summer? Salsa Corn Chowder (very chili-esque!). Fall? Pumpkin Turkey Chili.
Chili covers all of our mandatory bases on the dinner front:
- It’s quick to prepare and can sit in a slow cooker all day
- It’s pretty darn healthy and yet still insanely flavorful
- It’s very filling, which is essential for this family of four (including two toddlers who eat like teenagers!)
This recipe for The Best Vegetarian Chili was actually a happy accident. I had originally updated my Pumpkin Turkey Chili with a variation of this recipe, however I got so many comments and emails requesting the original recipe back that I had to revert it!
And then I started getting emails asking for the new recipe to be returned, and so here we are … with both!
You get your tried-and-tested longtime favorite Pumpkin Turkey Chili AND you get this updated vegetarian version that still stars creamy pumpkin, tons of spices and a whole lot-o-beans.
When it comes to toppings, creamy avocado, cool sour cream, shredded sharp cheddar and cilantro aren’t required, but boy oh boy do they ever take this flavor-packed recipe to a whole new (hearty, sorta healthy) level. And don’t forget the Simple Skillet Cornbread for a side dish!
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- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 medium onion, small dice
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, minced
- 1 Tablespoon ground cumin
- 1 Tablespoon dried oregano
- 1 Tablespoon ancho chili powder
- 1 bottle light beer (See Kelly's Note)
- 1 (15-oz.) can diced tomatoes
- 1 (15-oz.) can pumpkin purée
- 2 cups vegetable stock
- 1 (15-oz.) can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 (15-oz.) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 (15-oz.) can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
- 2 Tablespoons light brown sugar
- Avocado, sour cream, cheese and cilantro, for serving
- Add the olive oil to a large heavy-bottomed stock pot set over medium-low heat then add
the onions, garlic chipotles in adobo, cumin, oregano, ancho chili powder and 1
teaspoon salt, and cook until the onions are translucent, about 10 minutes.
- Increase the heat to medium, add the beer and cook until reduced by half, about 5 minutes.
- Stir in the tomatoes, pumpkin purée, vegetable stock, black beans, kidney beans, and pinto beans and
reduce the heat to low.
- Simmer the chili for one hour then stir in the brown sugar. Taste and season it with salt and pepper.
- When ready to serve, top the chili with avocado, sour cream, cheese and cilantro.
- If you prefer not to add the beer, you can substitute it with ¾ cup additional vegetable stock, used exactly the same way as specified in the recipe.
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Recipe by Kelly Senyei of Just a Taste. Please do not reprint this recipe without my permission. If you'd like to feature this recipe on your site, please rewrite the method of preparation and link to this post as the original source.
This is excellent! I used a product called Chipotle Pinto Beans by Serious Beans for a little more heat, and Roasted Garlic Base be Better than Bouillon because I didn’t have vegetable broth, but those were the only changes. The cornbread recipe mentioned in the article is also outstanding.
Woohoo! I’m thrilled you enjoyed the recipes, Jeri!
Hi Kelly: another fabulous recipe! I love chili and have tried many variations but this one is great because, not only is it tasty, it’s also quick and easy to prepare! I did add 1 lb. of ground turkey breast to satisfy my meat eaters!
I’m so thrilled you enjoyed the recipe, Betty!
How much do you taste the pumpkin? My husband and kids aren’t pumpkin fans. Any thoughts on a substitute?
Hi Mary! You can’t taste the pumpkin at all. It’s just for texture and nutritional value!
For your Vegetarian Chili recipe I don’t want to add beer, is that a anything else I could use? I have many friends who don’t drink and won’t eat anything with alcohol in it.
For sure! I just added a note to the recipe, but you can sub in 3/4 cup vegetable stock for the beer. Enjoy!