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Easy Vegan Chili

Easy Vegan Chili is the perfect healthy weeknight meal made in minutes. This Vegetarian Bean Chili Recipe is the best vegan chili I have ever had. In this post I will answer questions like, “how do you make vegan chili from scratch?” and “what is vegan chili made of?” 

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Easy Vegan Chili

vegan chili in a bowl on a table with a towel and spoon

Last year I had my yearly physical and had blood work done. The craziest thing happened, my cholesterol was high. It was hard to wrap my head around it as I feel like my diet is pretty decent and I am a fairly active person. So, I started thinking about what changes I could make in order to get those numbers down.

Other than the insane amount of stress I was currently under, I realized my diet was very high in red meat. Since I am not a huge meat fan anyways, I made the decision to start cutting out meat several nights a week.

Chili has always been a family favorite. No one EVER complains when I make chili for dinner. Because of that I decided to tackle a vegetarian bean chili recipe. I thought, “How do you make vegan chili from scratch?”

Vegetarian Bean Chili Recipe

vegan bean chili in a bowl on a table with a towel

Having made chili a million times over my life I knew that I would have to replace the ground beef for something else and I thought about what would give the chili a great consistency while still making it hearty like we expected. 

Having tried sweet potato in my chili before I knew that wouldn’t work, so I decided we just needed to add more beans. 

Lentils are my miracle bean and we love them, so I decided to give it a go and let me tell you it was pure perfection. I knew then that this was the best vegan chili recipe! 

So, what is vegan chili made of? 

vegan chili in a bowl on the counter with a towel and spoon

This easy vegan chili is very similar to a regular chili recipe, but obviously there is no meat. Here is what you will need…

  • Oil
  • Garlic and Onion
  • Crushed tomatoes
  • Lentils (canned, or previously cooked)
  • Kidney beans
  • Black beans
  • Tomato Sauce
  • Seasonings- cumin, chili powder, dried parsley, dried basil, sea salt, and ground pepper. 

How do you make vegan chili from scratch?

vegan chili in a bowl on the counter with a towel and spoon

I prefer to make this in the instant pot as it is the easiest and fastest way, but you could do this stovetop, or on the slow cooker.

In the Instant Pot start by putting it on saute mode and add the oil. If you are doing this on the stovetop simply add oil to your stockpot and put it on medium heat.

Add the onion and garlic and saute until the onions are translucent. Then turn off saute mode.

Add all of the ingredients to the pot and stir well to combine. Put the Instant Pot on chili mode, or if on the stove top bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer and allow it to cook until all of the beans are tender, about 30-45 minutes. 

This recipe has quickly turned into something that is on my weekly meal plan. It is an inexpensive yet flavorful and filling meal that everyone loves. You can add some delicious cornbread to this as well and there will be lots of happy tummies! 

So, next time you forget to take out something to thaw, or if you are vegan/vegetarian, or just wanting some ideas for a meatless Monday, you will surely love this recipe!



Easy Vegan Chili

This simple gluten free and vegan bean chili is the perfect weeknight dinner
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: easy vegan chili, healthy chili recipe, instant pot vegan chili
Servings: 6
Calories: 84kcal

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  • 1 tbsp avocado oil
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 yellow onion diced
  • 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 15 oz can lentil beans drained
  • 1 15 oz can kidney beans drained
  • 2 15 oz can black beans drained
  • 1 15 oz can tomato sauce
  • 1 tsp dried cumin
  • 2 tsp dried parsley
  • 2 tsp dried basil
  • 1 1/2 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground pepper


  • In your instant pot add the oil, onion, and garlic. Turn it on saute mode. Saute until onions are translucent about 4-6 minutes.
  • Turn the heat off and add the tomatoes, beans, tomato sauce, and all the spices. Stir to combine well.
  • Cook on bean/chili mode on high pressure for 30 minutes,
  • Once cooking is done, release the pressure and serve.


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Calories: 84kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 600mg | Potassium: 477mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 888IU | Vitamin C: 14mg | Calcium: 73mg | Iron: 3mg
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Recipe Rating


  1. Jason Byrne says:

    5 stars
    This recipe was incredible. I wish my instant pot was bigger, so I could’ve made a bigger batch! We had it last night, and it was the best chili I’ve ever had. I cannot wait to have it again tonight for dinner.

    1. livingfreelygf says:

      Thank you so much for sharing that and I am very happy you loved it! We have been making this every week and I just got the 8qt IP so I could double my recipes! My hubby and son love this for lunch the next day too. It is also AMAZING on french fries!

  2. Do you have measurements for the ingredients please?