Slow Cooker Vegan Chili

Slow Cooker Vegan Chili
Written by Jessica Verma

An easy slow-cooker vegan chili recipe

You may or may not have noticed, but I have a somewhat slapdash cooking style. I like to chop a bunch of stuff up and throw in a little of this, a little of that, and end up with whatever I end up with. This was not always the case – when I first started cooking I meticulously followed recipes and measured every ingredient. But as I become more familiar with how flavors and spices interact I find it’s easier and easier to just wing it. In fact, I’ve been using my measuring spoons way more since I started this blog, simply because I don’t think you guys would appreciate it if my recipes all consisted of “Uhm, maybe like a handful or two of cilantro?” in the ingredients list. The sacrifices I make for you, it’s just mind-boggling.

This chili is definitely an example of throwing a bunch of stuff that “seems like chili” into the slow cooker – chili is one of the easier recipes to do that with because as long as you know to add beans, cumin and chili powder you’re pretty much going to end up with something that tastes like chili. Chili is frequently a not-vegetarian dish, what with all that ground beef, but it’s also really easy to make vegetarian, and in the case of this particular recipe, easy to throw together in the morning and come home to a slow cooker full of deliciousness in the evening.

The directions couldn’t get much easier – chop up all the veggies, rinse the beans, and toss it all into the slow cooker. Let it sit for 6-8 hours and you’re good to go! If you don’t feel like using the slow cooker you could also just make it in a big pot on the stove – I’d say you’d want to simmer it for about 3 hours if you use dried beans, but if you use canned then you could probably get away with maybe 30-45 minutes of simmering on the stovetop.

Slow Cooker Vegan Chili

Slow Cooker Vegan Chili

Gluten free, soy free, and vegan. This chili has kidney, black, and garbanzo beans, but you could really substitute most beans for the black & garbanzos. I'd suggest leaving in the kidney beans because they are the most typical "chili-like" bean, but if you don't want to I'm certainly not going to stop you.
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3.8 from 5 votes
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  • 2 carrots peeled and diced
  • 2 stalks of celery chopped fine
  • 1 onion diced
  • 3-4 cloves garlic minced
  • 3 medium tomatoes chopped
  • 2 c. dried kidney beans make sure to rinse them
  • 1 c. dried black beans
  • 1/2 c. dried garbanzo beans
  • 1.5 c. frozen corn or about an ear's worth of fresh
  • 3 Tbsp Chili Powder
  • 2 Tbsp Cumin
  • 1.5 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp Turmeric optional
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • Pepper to taste
  • 7 c. vegetable broth or water
  • 1 avocado sliced or mashed (optional, as topping)


  • Add all the ingredients into your slow cooker and cook on high for 6-8 hours or until the beans are soft and the chili has darkened to a nice deep brownish red. Serve with avocado slices if desired. Leftovers keep well in the fridge for about 4-5 days.
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  • This is exactly what I am craving today, thank you for reading my mind! Found you on vegolicious(I’m on there too), really glad I did, lovely blog!

    • Nope, no soaking – just rinse and throw ’em in the slow cooker. If you do it on the stovetop I suppose you could soak them for a couple hours to reduce the cooking time.

  • Awesome, thanks! Looking forward to trying this. I have yet to trust a veg slow cooker recipe enough to leave cooking while I’m at work all day, but I could totally see chili handling it (and be enhanced by it!). Thanks again.

  • I’ve always made chili vegan before I knew what vegan was. This recipe is very similar to my own, but I love that it is a slow cooker version and you don’t have to soak the beans. Celery is an interesting addition that I may try.

  • This chili looks great, so easy! but don’t the red kidney beans need boiling for 10 minutes first to remove the toxins?
    I cook all my beans and freeze them into can size portions but it would be great to just chuck everything in the slow cooker to make this chili, just not sure about the red kidney beans it goes against everything I’ve read about them.
    I’m guessing you’ve had no ill effects cooking them this way?

  • Great Chili. Soaked my beans & they came out perfectly tender. Wonderful spice blend. I decided to try it – if you can make vegan chili taste good, must be a great recipe .. and it is! Thanks.

  • This was SO GOOD. I’m a newbie vegan, and trying to convert my Mom. She is a die-hard hamburger chili fan… and she loved this! The only thing I had an issue with was the liquid. I had to add 2 more cups of veggie stock! But overall… super yum! 🙂

  • I adhered strictly to the recipe and directions and it was still thin and bland. Added some tomato paste and more seasoning and it was a hit. Thanks for the starter recipe!

  • OMGoodness … Best EVER! Have just started eliminating canned goods in favor of cleaner eating, and I’ve never made chili w/o meat. Made almost exactly like recipe but used large can organic chopped tomatoes as part of the 7 c liquid (didn’t have fresh). Returned home after 6 hrs & was afraid it was overcooked, but was thick & delicious with just the right amount of “kick”. Tastes like it has meat, but NO … definitely going to be my chili from here on! Thanks!!