The Best Vegetarian Chili

from 2 votes

Skip the meat and still enjoy a protein-packed meal with a fast and fresh recipe for The Best Vegetarian Chili.

Two white bowls filled with chili and smaller bowls surrounding them containing chili toppings

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!)

Small glass bowls containing the ingredients to make vegetarian chili

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!

A Dutch oven containing chili being ladled out on a gold spoon

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!

Two bowls of chili surrounded by cilantro, cheese and sour cream

Craving more? Subscribe to Just a Taste to get new recipes and a newsletter delivered straight to your inbox! And stay in touch on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram for all of the latest updates.

Main Course

The Best Vegetarian Chili

Skip the meat and still enjoy a protein-packed meal with a fast and fresh recipe for The Best Vegetarian Chili.
Author: Kelly Senyei
5 from 2 votes
Two white bowls filled with chili and smaller bowls surrounding them containing chili toppings
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Servings 6 servings


  • 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.

Kelly's Note:

  • 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.
  • ★ Did you make this recipe? Don't forget to give it a star rating below!


Calories: 123kcal, Carbohydrates: 7g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 9g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 404mg, Potassium: 99mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 865IU, Vitamin C: 2mg, Calcium: 36mg, Iron: 1mg


Did you try this recipe?

Share it with the world! Mention @justataste or tag #justatasterecipes!

This post may contain affiliate links.

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.

Feeling social?

Share this recipe!


Related Recipes

Check out more crave-worthy favorites

Kelly Senyei holding a copy of The Secret Ingredient Cookbook

love the recipes on just a taste?

Check out my cookbook!

Order your copy of The Secret Ingredient Cookbook featuring 125 brand-new family-friendly recipes with surprisingly tasty twists!

This post may contain affiliate links.

5 from 2 votes

Join the Conversation

Rate and Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating


  1. I saw you on tv and you talked about using your air fryer for quick recipes. We have a new air fryer but I don’t know that much about how to cook with it.

    1. Thanks so much for tuning in to the segment, Barbara! I’ll send you an email now with my ultimate Air Fryer Guide with recipes!

  2. 5 stars
    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.

  3. 5 stars
    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!

  4. 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.