Three Bean Vegetarian Chili

The best vegetarian chili recipe is thick and loaded with three types of beans and hearty vegetables. The chili takes less than 20 minutes to prep and simmers on the stove to create a warm and comforting meal. 

vegetarian bean chili in a bowl with sour cream on top

Vegetarian chili is a great way to increase your consumption of vegetables, especially during the winter. It’s warm, comforting and packed with beans and veggies. This recipe is slightly seasoned and perfect to enjoy with a side of tortilla chips or layered over the top of a baked sweet potato. Even better, make Instant Pot Spaghetti Squash and serve the chili over the squash.

steps to make vegetarian chili on the stove

How to make the best vegetarian chili recipe

This recipe comes together easily.

  1. Prep all of the ingredients, including vegetables, beans and spices.
  2. Cook the vegetables until tender, then add the beans and remaining ingredients. We use a Dutch oven but you can use any large saucepan.
  3. Cover the chili, reduce heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes. Then, uncover and simmer for at least 30 additional minutes.

Feel free to adapt this recipe to fit your taste or whatever ingredients you have on hand. You can use frozen vegetables instead of fresh. And you can substitute any type of chili beans.

If the chili is too thick, add more tomato sauce or a small amount of vegetable broth.

Chili toppings

Serve bean chili with any of your favorite chili toppings. Switch up the toppings to create a completely different meal every time.

  • Sour Cream
  • Shredded Cheese
  • Cilantro
  • Avocado
  • Tortilla Chips
  • Scallions
  • Limes
  • Hot Sauce

bowl with best vegetarian chili

Storage suggestions

Leftovers taste great. Store any leftovers in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

If freezing, let the chili cool then pack it in a freezer bag or Tupperware container and freeze. When you are ready to serve, let it thaw in the fridge for a day or two and then reheat on the stovetop over medium-low heat.

We know that you’re going to love this three bean vegetarian chili. If you’re looking for a good hearty chili with meat, try our Hearty Turkey Chili. It’s thick and flavorful, but it’s made with turkey. Try it and let us know what you think!

vegetarian bean chili in a bowl with sour cream on top

Three Bean Vegetarian Chili

Yield: 6 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
Mix it up with this three bean vegetarian chili that is thick and loaded with vegetables. Add chips and you have a perfect warm meal.
5 from 2 votes


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 medium zucchini, chopped
  • 15 ounces great northern beans, drained and rinsed (1 can)
  • 15 ounces kidney beans, drained and rinsed (1 can)
  • 15 ounces pinto beans, drained and rinsed (1 can)
  • 45 ounces diced tomatoes, (3 cans)
  • 30 ounces tomato sauce, (2 cans)
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • dash salt


  • Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven or saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Sir in the garlic, carrots, celery, pepper and zucchini. Cook until vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes.
  • Add the great northern beans, kidney beans, pinto beans, diced tomatoes and tomato sauce. Season with chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer 20 minutes. Uncover and cook for 30 additional minutes.
  • Garnish with cheese, sour cream, and green onions if desired.


  • Store leftovers in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat prior to serving.


Serving: 0g, Calories: 383kcal, Carbohydrates: 69g, Protein: 22g, Fat: 4g, Saturated Fat: 0g, Cholesterol: 0mg, Sodium: 460mg, Potassium: 1772mg, Fiber: 22g, Sugar: 11g, Vitamin A: 4890IU, Vitamin C: 51.2mg, Calcium: 209mg, Iron: 9mg
Course: Soup
Cuisine: American
Author: Ashley C.
If you try this recipe, don’t forget to leave a review below or share a photo and tag @spoonfulofflavor on Instagram.

5 comments on “Three Bean Vegetarian Chili”

  1. Can the chili be cooked in a crock pot? If so times and temp?

    • Yes, you can add everything to a slow cooker and cook on high for 2 to 3 hours or low for 4 to 6 hours. Check to make sure everything is cooked through and tender. Enjoy!

  2. This is such a hearty and filling chili! It’s perfect for meatless Mondays around here.

  3. I love this. I don’t like sour cream and I am glad it is optional. I am going to try this out and let you know.

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