Black Bean and Sweet Potato Chili

Black bean vegetarian chili

The Spruce

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 25 mins
Total: 35 mins
Servings: 5 to 6 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
384 Calories
6g Fat
67g Carbs
19g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 5 to 6
Amount per serving
Calories 384
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 6g 8%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 341mg 15%
Total Carbohydrate 67g 24%
Dietary Fiber 18g 63%
Protein 19g
Calcium 199mg 15%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

If you're making a vegetarian meal or bringing a dish to a potluck, this black bean and sweet potato chili is so flavorful that it can please anyone. The sweet potatoes and carrots match perfectly with the spiciness of the fresh chili flavor. This dish is an excellent source of protein for anyone, whether vegetarians, vegans, or kids.

All of the ingredients in this recipe are both vegetarian and vegan, and, if you use water (instead of vegetable broth), it is gluten-free as well. Some store-bought vegetable broths are gluten-free and some are not. Read the label, if in doubt, or, make your own homemade vegetable broth.


  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 small onion (diced)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 small sweet potatoes (peeled and chopped)
  • 2 medium carrots (sliced)
  • Optional: 1/2 red bell pepper (chopped)
  • 1 (15-ounce) can black beans
  • 1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes (or tomato sauce)
  • 1/2 cup water (or vegetable broth, make sure your broth is gluten-free if needed)
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne (or to taste)
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for sweet potato black bean chili
    The Spruce 
  2. In a Dutch oven or soup pot, sauté the garlic and onions in olive oil for a minute or two.

    Saute the onions
    The Spruce
  3. Add the chopped sweet potatoes, sliced carrots, and optional chopped bell pepper to the pan and cook until the onions are soft, about 5 to 6 minutes.

    Add chopped sweet potatoes
    The Spruce
  4. Reduce the heat to medium-low and add in all of the remaining ingredients, stirring to combine well.

    Chopped in a pot
    The Spruce 
  5. Allow your chili to simmer, partially covered and stirring occasionally over medium-low heat, for about 20 to 25 minutes, until the flavors have mingled and the sweet potatoes, carrots, and bell peppers are soft.

    The Spruce
  6. Serve in a bowl topped with your favorite chili toppings and enjoy.


  • Consider a toppings bar for your black bean chili, including salsa, chopped cilantro, sliced green onions, diced avocado, and crushed gluten-free corn tortilla chips. Sour cream, shredded cheese, or vegan substitutes might also be offered (checking labels if gluten-free foods are desired).
  • Store any leftovers in the refrigerator. They should be good for two to four days and will reheat well in the microwave. You can also make a pot of black bean chili and freeze individual portions for later meals. Allow the chili to cool, place it in individual freezer containers, label with the contents and date, and freeze. The chili will be of good quality for up to six months. You can defrost it for six hours or overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.

Using Dried Black Beans

  • This recipe uses canned black beans for convenience. You can start with dried black beans but you will need to soak them and cook them before adding them to the recipe. If you are using dried black beans, start with a little less than 2 cups. Soak them for at least 3 hours (or overnight). You can add the soaked beans to the recipe and increase the cooking time to 2.5 to 3 hours. Or, you can bring the beans to a boil and let them simmer for 2 hours before adding them to the recipe.

Recipe Tags: