In this post: This slow cooker chili is filled with veggies and all sorts of canned beans! Put it on in the morning & it’s ready at dinner.


While chili may feel like a meal just perfect for a cool fall day, coming home to it simmering in the slow cooker can be a welcome treat after a long day out of the house  – at any time of year! Plus this vegetarian slow cooker chili recipe is super easy to make!

SLOW COOKER CHILI

This chili is particularly for bean-lovers because it’s chock full of four kinds of beans (more if you wish).  It’s equally delicious with or without ground meat. If you do add meat, be sure to use ground chicken, turkey, or extra lean ground beef to keep the chili from simmering in nasty fat all day!

What is Vegetarian Chili?

Traditionally chili is a big pot of meat and beans, maybe some veggies and spices. 

Vegetarian chili is a big pot of beans and veggies, seasoned with Mexican-style spices and seasonings. 

Why Make This Vegetarian Chili Recipe in a Slow Cooker

Chili in the slow cooker is super simple to make because it basically is dump and walk away. Just toss all the ingredients in the slow cooker, set it on high, and leave it to cook for 6-8 hours. 

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

This slow cooker chili recipe made with several types of canned beans is:

  • full of protein – beans and tuna are the most popular canned proteins
  • filling – protein helps you feel fuller longer 
  • easy to make – even my kids can make it!

Vegetarian Chili in a Slow Cooker Ingredients

For the full recipe ingredients and step-by-step directions, see the recipe card below. 

  • 2 – 28 oz cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 – 28 oz can or jar of crushed tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp oregano
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp salt
  • pepper to taste
  • pinch of dried pepper flakes
  • 2 – 28 oz cans of red kidney beans
  • 1 – 19 oz can black beans
  • 1 – 19 oz can chickpeas
  • 2 – 14 oz cans of brown beans in tomato sauce
  • 2 carrots finely grated
  • 1 zucchini finely shredded
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic, crushed

Variations

  • Add spices like cumin, smoked paprika, chipotle powder, or cayenne pepper for alternate flavors
  • You can swap or add other beans (like white kidney beans, navy beans, fava beans, pinto beans) or lentils 
  • Include corn (organic is best) if you tolerate it well
  • Add other chopped or diced veggies like red, yellow, or green bell peppers, broccoli, cauliflower, sweet potatoes, or green beans chopped up small to add more nutrition
  • Use red, yellow, or white onions, depending on your preference
grean life white slow cooker

How to Make Vegetarian Chili in a Slow Cooker

01| Prepare your slow cooker by spraying it with no-stick spray or olive oil.

02| Pour tomatoes into the slow cooker. 

03| Add spices and herbs.

04| Add all beans and vegetables to the slow cooker.

05| Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6-8 hours.

06| Stir periodically and before serving. 

NOTE: If you’re adding ground meat or a ground meat substitute, place it in the bottom of the slow cooker before other ingredients

CROCKPOT CHILI

Best Toppings for Slow Cooker Vegetarian Chili

  • Chopped cilantro
  • Vegan sour cream
  • Diced tomatoes
  • Chopped lettuce
  • Spinach
  • Vegan mayo 
  • Shredded dairy-free cheese or cheddar cheese
  • Lime juice
  • Diced green onions

What To Serve With Veggie Chili

  • Scoop your chili with corn chips or cassava tortilla chips
  • Serve with a side of green salad
  • Crusty bread or garlic bread makes a lovely pairing with this vegetarian chili recipe
VEGETARIAN CHILI

Alternative cooking methods

Stovetop

You could make this veggie chili recipe on the stove top by placing all the ingredients in a pot and cooking on medium-low until the beans and veggies are heated through and soft and the spices have had time to blend together. This takes about an hour or so.

Make ahead and storage instructions

Veggie chili reheats really well – in fact, some at our house actually like it reheated better! 

To make ahead, cook as instructed and then store in an airtight container in the fridge for a few days. Then reheat in the microwave. Add a little water before reheating if the chili is too thick and pasty. 

FAQs

How to store and reheat chili?

Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-5 days. Reheat in the microwave or on a pot on the stove until heated through. Add a small amount of water if needed.  

Can you freeze vegan crockpot chili?

Yes! Vegan crockpot chili freezes really well. Simply cool completely and store in an air-tight freezer container or even a freezer Ziploc. 

Is this chili spicy?

This chili is not too spicy as the recipe is written. You can omit the red pepper entirely for a less spicy version or increase it to make the recipe spicier. If you want you can also add cayenne pepper or more red pepper for spicier chili if desired. 

Is vegan chili good for you?

Filled with beans and veggies, this vegan chili is super healthy because of its vitamin and fiber content. 

Is this a vegan chili recipe?

Yes! If you don’t add any meat, avoid toppings like traditional sour cream and dairy-filled cheese, this is a vegan chili recipe. 

Can I add soy crumbles?

Yes! You can also add Beyond Beef or another brand of ground beef substitute if you wish. 

Dietary Considerations

  • To keep this vegetarian avoid adding meat to the chili. 
  • For vegans, also avoid dairy products like cheese and sour cream. 
  • To keep it gluten-free, watch the ingredients on your canned beans and spices. And be sure to serve with gluten-free bread. 

It’s also great for little chili lovers (aka kids) because you can sneak shredded vegetables in without anyone noticing. So it’s tasty and healthy!

Slow cooker chili can be served over rice, on its own, or with a little cheese (dairy-free for the vegans!) sprinkled on top!

Vegetarian Chili in a Slow Cooker

Vegetarian Chili in a Slow Cooker

Yield: 10 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 4 hours
Total Time: 4 hours 15 minutes

Slow cooker chili that is equally good with or without meat and is perfect with all sorts of canned beans! Put it on in the morning & it's ready at dinner.

Ingredients

  • 2 - 28 oz cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 - 28 oz can or jar of crushed tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp oregano
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp salt
  • pepper to taste
  • pinch of dried pepper flakes
  • 2 - 28 oz cans red kidney beans
  • 1 - 19 oz can black beans
  • 1 - 19 oz can chickpeas
  • 2 - 14 oz cans brown beans in tomato sauce
  • 2 carrots finely grated
  • 1 zucchinni finely shredded
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 2 cloves crushed garlic

Instructions

  1. Spray slow cooker with no-stick spray or olive oil.
  2. If adding ground meat substitute place in the bottom of the slow cooker before other ingredients.
  3. Pour tomatoes into the slow cooker.
  4. Add spices and herbs.
  5. Add all beans and vegetables to the slow cooker.
  6. Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6-8 hours.

Serve hot with a slice of bread, over rice or with a side salad.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 10 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 906Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 48mgSodium: 1527mgCarbohydrates: 149gFiber: 49gSugar: 16gProtein: 64g

This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily via Nutrifox.

Did you make this recipe?

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Do you make your chili in the slow cooker?

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2 Comments

  1. Question: do you rinse and/or drain the canned beans (kidney, black, chickpeas)? Or do you need that liquid? Also, what is the US equivalent of “brown beans in tomato sauce “? I ‘m guessing it’s like “pork and beans”? Thanks!

    1. Oh goodness! Did I leave that out? Yes, you strain and rinse the beans. And the US equivalent would be baked beans/baked beans in tomato sauce. Since this recipe is vegetarian it would NOT be pork and beans!