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The Best Slow Cooker Vegan Chili

This slow cooker vegan chili recipe will delight your taste buds. It’s not only wholesome but delicious and easy to make. A vegan twist on this classic comfort food for those chilly days ahead makes for a healthy dinner packed with nutrients brimming with flavor!

Bowls of Chili on a Wooden Board

This post was originally published on Oct 15, 2017 and updated on Jan 27, 2020 by Elena Szeliga. 

It’s hard to believe that this wholesome slow cooker chili is vegan! Combining a winning grain mix, two kinds of beans, corn, bell peppers, onions and lots of tomatoes make it a hearty, nutritious and comforting meal to enjoy this fall.

The best thing about this easy vegan chili is that it’s basically self-cooking.

Toss all the ingredients into the slow cooker, set it on high and wait for 6-8 hours.

Just let it cook while you are at work and arrive to a home that smells like heaven!

Holding a Pot of Vegan Chili

An added bonus to this recipe is that this vegan chili freezes like a pro.

Make a large batch and store what you don’t eat in the freezer, then you will have a bunch of quick and easy meals ready at your fingertips.

Can you believe October is coming to an end? I can’t either.

I’ve managed to catch the tail end of summer last weekend. I was in Rome meeting my best friend and enjoying lots of pizza, pasta, lasagna and cappuccino as well as T-shirt weather!

However, when I came back, real October was already in full force. To kick off the chilly weather and rain, I immediately made this comforting chili!

Hands Holding a Bowl of Chili

I am always amazed by the power of sharing food that brings people closer. But there is something special about having vegan chili for dinner. To me, it brings the “homey” feeling of comfort, warmth and coziness.

Making this chili (or my perfect vegan sloppy joes) for dinner is a great way to enjoy the presence of your loved ones and bask in the delightful feelings of comfort and peace.

You’ll find more ideas for vegan comfort food recipes (think pasta dishes, soups, casseroles, etc) in my recent post.

A Bowl of Vegan Chili Garnished with Vegan Sour Cream, Avocado and Jalapenos

Why Make Vegan Chili in a Slow Cooker

You don’t have to be a vegan to enjoy this chili! Here is why I love it and you will too:

  • It’s full of flavor and super delicious;
  • It’s packed with nutrients and protein;
  • It’s healthy and low in calories;
  • You can customize it depending on what you like and have in your fridge;
  • Having a slow cooker makes it incredibly easy and quick to make but you can also make it on the stove, or even in an Instant Pot;
  • Adjust the spiciness to your taste and make it kid-friendly;
  • It makes a great vegan packed lunch – just fill a mason jar with it and take it to work (my husband’s colleagues are always envious!);
  • It feeds a crowd of at least 8 people;
  • And my favorite – freeze it in zipper bags for up to 3 months to enjoy whenever you feel like it!

Chili is one of those foods that tastes even better the next day, just like ratatouille, grain stew with sweet potatoes or vegan minestrone soup.

Another hearty, heart warming vegan meal that you should be sure to check out is this Vegan Spaghetti Bolognese. It’s 100% plant based and made with one of my new favorite ingredients: Tempeh!

Bowls of Vegan Chili with Garnishes on a Napkin

This easy vegan chili recipe is a delicious and comforting meal that comes together within minutes. Throw is into your slow cooker and let the magic happen.

Ingredients for the Chili

For this slow cooker chili you’ll need:

  • Beans (I use black and navy beans, but feel free to use your favorite ones);
  • Grain mix that I usually use for my healthy wholemeal bread, a combo of wheat berries, rye, spelt, millet and barley. You can also use any combination of the above-mentioned grains, as well as quinoa to save time (see notes below);
  • Onions and garlic;
  • Red and green bell peppers;
  • Sweet corn;
  • Diced tomatoes and tomato sauce;
  • Vegetable stock;
  • Jalapenos or red chilies;
  • Spices;
  • Vegan yogurt, avocados, lime and tortilla chips to serve.

Grains in a Jug

How to Make This Chili

Start with soaking your beans and grains in water overnight.
Are you pressed for time?
Here is a great shortcut: just use canned beans and quinoa.

Uncooked Black Beans

Uncooked Navy Beans

Once the beans and grains are ready, dice the onion and bell peppers. Here is a life changing trick that will make chopping bell peppers so much easier!

Diced Bell Peppers on a Cutting Board

 

Mince the garlic and chili peppers (I used two but if you like it hot, add more).

Put all the prepared ingredients in your slow cooker. Add diced tomatoes, tomato sauce and vegetable broth, as well as cumin, sweet paprika, bay leaves, salt and black pepper. Stir everything well to combine.

Ingredients for Vegan Chili in a Slow Cooker

Cook on high for 6-8 hours or until cooked through. Adjust the seasoning to your taste. Serve hot with a spoonful of vegan yogurt, chopped avocados, jalapenos, lime and tortilla chips.

If you’re not cooking for a crowd, let it cool and freeze in zipper bags for up to 3 months.

Laddle of Vegan Bean Chili

Cook’s Tips

  • You can store this chili for up to 5 days in the fridge
  • This chili is perfect for meal prep. Freeze it for up to 3 months in freezer bags and reheat on the stove or in the microwave. Add a bit of water or vegetable stock if it’s too thick.
  • Use leftover cooked beans for this chili for a quick and nutritious meal. Just throw the rest of the ingredients in your crockpot and cook on high for 3-4 hours.

Bowls of Vegan Chili with the Pot

Recipe Variations

  • Use other types of beans that you like in place of black and navy beans.
  • If you don’t have time for soaking, just use canned or cooked beans. In this case the cooking time reduces to 3-4 hours (on high).
  • You can use any combination of the above-mentioned grains like uncooked quinoa or skip the grains and add lentils.
  • Cook this vegan chili on the stovetop for around 1 hour instead of using the slow cooker.

Here is the full recipe for you, hope you’ll enjoy it as much as I did! If you did, I would appreciate you giving it a 5-star rating! 😉

 

 

Print
4.61 from 23 votes

The Best Slow Cooker Vegan Chili

The Best Slow Cooker Vegan Chili Recipe is wholesome, delicious and easy to make. Comforting and healthy freezable dinner packed with nutrients and flavors!
Course Main Course, Soup
Cuisine American
Keyword bean chili, easy vegan chili, slow cooker vegan chili, the best vegan chili, vegan chili, vegan chili recipe
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Slow cooking time 8 hours
Total Time 8 hours 15 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 260kcal
$8

Ingredients

  • 2 cups navy beans soaked overnight or two 14 oz cans cooked beans
  • 2 cups black beans soaked overnight or two 14 oz cans cooked beans
  • 1 cup grain mix a combo of wheat berries, rye, spelt, millet and barley (see notes below), soaked overnight
  • 1 big yellow onion
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • 1 cup or 14 oz can sweet corn
  • 2 14 oz cans diced tomatoes
  • 2 14 oz cans tomato sauce
  • 5-6 cups vegetable stock
  • 2 red chili peppers or jalapenos, adjust the hoteness to your liking
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon sweet paprika
  • 2 bay leaves
  • salt and freshly ground bell pepper to taste
  • Vegan yogurt, avocados, lime and tortilla chips to serve

Instructions

  • Start with soaking your beans and grains in water overnight. If you don't have time for that, just use canned beans and quinoa.
  • Dice the onion and bell peppers. Mince the garlic and chili peppers (I used two but if you like it hot, add more).
  • Put all the prepared ingredients in your slow cooker. Add sweet corn, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce and vegetable broth, as well as cumin, sweet paprika, bay leaves, salt and black pepper. Stir everything well to combine.
  • Cook on high for 6-8 hours or until cooked through. Adjust the seasoning to your taste. Serve hot with a spoonful of vegan yogurt, chopped avocados, jalapenos, lime and tortilla chips. Let cool and freeze in zipper bags for up to 3 months if desired. Enjoy!

Notes

Cook’s Tips

  • You can store this chili for up to 5 days in the fridge
  • This chili is perfect for meal prep. Freeze it for up to 3 months in freezer bags and reheat on the stove or in the microwave. Add a bit of water or vegetable stock if it's too thick.
  • Use leftover cooked beans for this chili for a quick and nutritious meal. Just throw the rest of the ingredients in your crockpot and cook on high for 3-4 hours.

Recipe Variations

  • Use other types of beans that you like in place of black and navy beans.
  • If you don't have time for soaking, just use canned or cooked beans. In this case the cooking time reduces to 3-4 hours (on high).
  • You can use any combination of the above-mentioned grains like uncooked quinoa or skip the grains and add lentils.
  • Cook this vegan chili on the stovetop for around 1 hour instead of using the slow cooker.

Nutrition

Calories: 260kcal | Carbohydrates: 52g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 1g | Sodium: 593mg | Potassium: 509mg | Fiber: 13g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 1385IU | Vitamin C: 34.3mg | Calcium: 70mg | Iron: 3.7mg
Tried this recipe?Follow @happykitchen.rocks on Instagram and show me the recipes you are making from my blog using the hashtag #happykitchenrocks!

Other Vegan Soup Recipes You’ll Love:

Ingredients for Vegan Chili in a Slow Cooker Pinterest
Slow Cooker Vegan Chili Pinterest
Vegan Chili in a Bowl Pinterest
Recipe Rating




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Michelle

Thursday 16th of June 2022

I haven't made it yet, but this looks absolutely delicious! Is it possible to use tomato paste instead of tomato sauce? I have a lot of tomato paste, but no tomato sauce. They should really sell tomato paste by the tablespoon. Lol. Thank you!

Elena Szeliga

Friday 17th of June 2022

Hi Michelle, you can absolutely do it, just add some water to thin it up :) Hope you enjoy the chili!

Chelsea

Wednesday 23rd of February 2022

Tastes amazing but I have had the hardest time cooking it every time! The slow cooker option on my instant pot did not cook the beans at all so I tried cooking it on the stove and the beans would not cook so I pressure cooked it in batches and that finally worked. Then this time I went straight to pressure cooking in the instant pot (in 2 batches because the instant pot is too small for this giant recipe) and no matter what I change I keep getting a burn message!! This is all the more frustrating because it is a truly delicious chili that freezes really well.

Elena Szeliga

Thursday 24th of February 2022

Hi Chelsea, thanks for your feedback! You can also use canned beans or cooked beans. That would save you time. I'm happy that this recipe works with pressure cooker as well - I haven;t test it myself yet.

Anais

Saturday 6th of June 2020

Oh wow, I totally didn't see that your slow cooker is much bigger than mine. I've used mine for years and never had a problem with recipes before but now that I'm about to add the tomato sauce, there is just absolutely no room for it and things are about to spill over! So...as strange as it felt to have to do this, I took cups of ingredients out. :( I'll try to cook them later?

Elena Szeliga

Sunday 7th of June 2020

Hi Anais, I'm so sorry it didn't work for you! What size is your slow cooker? You can scale the ingredients next time (this recipe makes 8 generous servings). And of course you can take part of the mixture out and cook it later. It's great for freezing. Hope you still enjoyed the chili!

Cathy

Sunday 29th of December 2019

Hi, can this be done in a slow cooker on high for 4 hours rather than slow?

Elena Szeliga

Monday 30th of December 2019

Hi Cathy, absolutely! 4 hours on high would be enough for this chili. Hope you enjoy the recipe!

Megan

Monday 2nd of December 2019

First time trying this recipe. I used canned beans and quinoa (thank you for including that option!!) because I have a toddler and a newborn so time is precious. I used a can each of navy, white, red & black beans. Also, I cooked it in the instant pot on soup/stew mode for 30 minutes, came out perfect! So happy to add a delicious freezer friendly recipe to the book!

Elena Szeliga

Tuesday 3rd of December 2019

I'm so happy you enjoyed this chili recipe, Megan! My toddler loves it if I make it without jalapenos

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About Elena Szeliga

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Elena Szeliga is the founder of Happy Kitchen.Rocks, where she shares delicious and healthy vegetarian and vegan food, from weeknight dinners to veganized classics and gourmet appetizers. Her recipes have been featured at Better Homes & Gardens, BuzzFeed, Country Living, The Kitchn and Reader’s Digest. Her mission is to help cook easy vegetarian and vegan meals with simple and fresh ingredients. Read more about Elena.

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