Easy Vegetarian Chili Recipe

Keeping it simple and delicious with this Easy Vegetarian Chili Recipe! One pot, basic ingredients, and 45 minutes is all you need!

This Easy Vegetarian Chili Recipe is coming at the absolute perfect time. As the temperature begins to drop here in East Tennessee all I can think about is soup and chili! I have had my go-to chili recipe ever since we got married five years ago, but because it is full of meat I wanted to create a version that fit our more vegetable focused lives today.

We have been trying to incorporate new vegetables and legumes into our recipes lately and I gladly found lentils a home in this vegetarian chili recipe! If you are hesitant about lentils, I promise that there is no need to be. They take on the flavor of the chili and add such a nice texture to the mix. Not to mention their awesome health benefits! 

Ready to make some?!

lentil veggie chili topped with sour cream, cheese, and jalapeños in white bowl on white marble counter

Easy Vegetarian Chili Ingredients:

To make this Vegetarian Chili, you will need the following ingredients. See the full recipe card below for detailed amounts and instructions! 

  • Olive oil - 2 tablespoons is all you will need
  • Onion, garlic, bell pepper - Sauté away!
  • Chili powder, cumin, paprika - The basis of a good chili
  • Tomatoes and tomato paste - Diced with green chilies is my choice of tomatoes!
  • Lentils - We use red lentils in this recipe, but you can use whichever you have on hand or omit if you aren't a lentil fan. 
  • Kidney beans, black beans, corn - The chili trifecta
  • Jalapeno, sour cream, cheese - Or any toppings that your heart desires!

 

lentil veggie chili topped with sour cream, cheese, and jalapeños in white bowl on white marble counter

How to Make Easy Vegetarian Chili:

To make this chili recipe, simply:

  1. Sauté - Add olive oil to a large pot over medium heat. Add onion and bell pepper to pot and season with salt and pepper. Sauté, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes or until onion is translucent. Stir in the garlic and cook until fragrant. 
  2. Add tomatoes & spices - Add the diced tomatoes, tomato paste, water, chili powder, cumin, and paprika, stirring until fully combined. Bring to a low boil over medium to high heat. 
  3. Simmer - Once chili is boiling, add the lentils and lower the heat to low so it comes to a gentle simmer. Cook for 15 minutes. Add more water if necessary.
  4. Add beans & corn - After lentils have cooked, add the black beans, kidney beans, and corn. Mixing until fully combined. Bring the chili back to a simmer on low heat and cover for 15 minutes so the flavors can come together. Stirring occasionally.
  5. Taste & adjust - Adjust the seasonings to your taste. 
  6. Garnish - Garnish with your favorite toppings. Sour cream, cheese, jalapenos, and avocado are ours! 
 
NOTES:
To adjust spices: For smokiness add more chili powder and cumin. If you need to balance the heat add 1 teaspoon of sugar at a time until you reach your desired taste. If you want to add more heat, add a diced jalapeño to the mix! 
 
To store: Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days or freeze up to one and a half months. 
 
lentil veggie chili topped with sour cream, cheese, and jalapeños in white bowl on white marble counter
 

Perfect Chili Toppings:

  • Shredded cheese
  • Jalapeños
  • Cilantro
  • Sour cream
  • Tortilla or corn chips
  • Salsa or hot sauce

 

lentil veggie chili topped with sour cream, cheese, and jalapeños in white bowl on white marble counter

More savory recipes you'll love!

 

 

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lentil-veggie-chili

Easy Vegetarian Chili Recipe


  • Author: Lauren
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 1 large pot 1x

Description

Keeping it simple and delicious with this Easy Vegetarian Chili Recipe! One pot, basic ingredients, and 45 minutes is all you need!


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium white onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 4 tablespoons chili powder
  • 3 ½ teaspoons cumin
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • 2 - 15 ounce cans diced tomatoes with green chilies
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 cups water (plus more if needed as cooks)
  • ½ cup dry red lentils
  • 15 ounce can black beans
  • 15 ounce can kidney beans
  • 15 ounce can corn
  • Toppings of your choice

Instructions

    1. Sauté - Add olive oil to a large pot over medium heat. Add onion and bell pepper to pot and season with salt and pepper. Sauté, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes or until onion is translucent. Stir in the garlic and cook until fragrant. 
    2. Add tomatoes & spices - Add the diced tomatoes, tomato paste, water, chili powder, cumin, and paprika, stirring until fully combined. Bring to a low boil over medium to high heat. 
    3. Simmer - Once chili is boiling, add the lentils and lower the heat to low so it comes to a gentle simmer. Cook for 15 minutes. Add more water if necessary.
    4. Add beans & corn - After lentils have cooked, add the black beans, kidney beans, and corn. Mixing until fully combined. Bring the chili back to a simmer on low heat and cover for 15 minutes so the flavors can come together. Stirring occasionally.
    5. Taste & adjust - Adjust the seasonings to your taste. 
    6. Garnish - Garnish with your favorite toppings. Sour cream, cheese, jalapenos, and avocado are ours! 

Notes

  • To adjust spices: For smokiness add more chili powder and cumin. If you need to balance the heat add 1 teaspoon of sugar at a time until you reach your desired taste. If you want to add more heat, add a diced jalapeño to the mix! 
  • To store: Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days or freeze up to a month and a half.
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Additional Time: 0 hours
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes

Keywords: Easy Vegetarian Chili Recipe

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Welcome!

I'm Lauren, creator here at by Lauren Cermak! My husband Michael and I live in Tennessee. I'm into classic style, British baking shows, and pretty finds. My motto is dress like Kate, work like Reese, and entertain like Martha!

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{Hello 30!} When Michael asked how I was feeling about this birthday I said, “I’ve always wanted to be in my 30s!”. Blame it on Jennifer Garner’s thirty flirty and thriving or the fact that I’ve had the personality of a 30 year old woman since I was 18 😂, but today I’m living the dream! My twenties were full of joy, discovery, and so much growth. By the grace of God, I became a stronger and more confident person than I ever thought I could be. It’s hard for me to think about the past decade of my life without tearing up and every bit of it has to do with the man beside me. My best friend, confidant, cheerleader, champion, bodyguard, and simply everything! So to you, Michael Cermak, thank you for lifting me up and making all of my dreams come true! Here’s to 30! 
.
P.S. We’ve been falling in love with Georgetown/DC the past week and decided to hire someone to take some pictures of us together after seeing how many I have of just me from our other trips this year 😂 Thank you @cheyennemacielphotography for this sneak peak! If you’re in the DC area you must use her!
{Hello 30!} When Michael asked how I was feeling about this birthday I said, “I’ve always wanted to be in my 30s!”. Blame it on Jennifer Garner’s thirty flirty and thriving or the fact that I’ve had the personality of a 30 year old woman since I was 18 😂, but today I’m living the dream! My twenties were full of joy, discovery, and so much growth. By the grace of God, I became a stronger and more confident person than I ever thought I could be. It’s hard for me to think about the past decade of my life without tearing up and every bit of it has to do with the man beside me. My best friend, confidant, cheerleader, champion, bodyguard, and simply everything! So to you, Michael Cermak, thank you for lifting me up and making all of my dreams come true! Here’s to 30! . P.S. We’ve been falling in love with Georgetown/DC the past week and decided to hire someone to take some pictures of us together after seeing how many I have of just me from our other trips this year 😂 Thank you @cheyennemacielphotography for this sneak peak! If you’re in the DC area you must use her!
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And the precious reason we went to Nashville 🥰 I vow to spend an excessive amount of time and money spoiling you sweet girl! That’s what aunts are for, right?!
And the precious reason we went to Nashville 🥰 I vow to spend an excessive amount of time and money spoiling you sweet girl! That’s what aunts are for, right?!
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Great experience at @audreynashville this weekend! Not only is the food incredible, but the space is inspired! Photo dump featuring yet another one of Michael’s artistic (accidental) screenshot selfies 😂
Great experience at @audreynashville this weekend! Not only is the food incredible, but the space is inspired! Photo dump featuring yet another one of Michael’s artistic (accidental) screenshot selfies 😂
Great experience at @audreynashville this weekend! Not only is the food incredible, but the space is inspired! Photo dump featuring yet another one of Michael’s artistic (accidental) screenshot selfies 😂
Great experience at @audreynashville this weekend! Not only is the food incredible, but the space is inspired! Photo dump featuring yet another one of Michael’s artistic (accidental) screenshot selfies 😂
Great experience at @audreynashville this weekend! Not only is the food incredible, but the space is inspired! Photo dump featuring yet another one of Michael’s artistic (accidental) screenshot selfies 😂
Great experience at @audreynashville this weekend! Not only is the food incredible, but the space is inspired! Photo dump featuring yet another one of Michael’s artistic (accidental) screenshot selfies 😂
Great experience at @audreynashville this weekend! Not only is the food incredible, but the space is inspired! Photo dump featuring yet another one of Michael’s artistic (accidental) screenshot selfies 😂
Great experience at @audreynashville this weekend! Not only is the food incredible, but the space is inspired! Photo dump featuring yet another one of Michael’s artistic (accidental) screenshot selfies 😂
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