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Easy Vegetarian Chili (& Spaghetti Squash)

  • Author: Caitlin
  • Total Time: 50 mins
  • Yield: 8 1x


  • 3 cups of dried beans (you must soak these overnight) Or about 5 cups cooked (4ish cans)
  • 4 cups vegetable broth (unsalted is best)
  • water (lots)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 large carrots, shredded or chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 1 bunch of kale (or spinach), roughly chopped
  • 4 tomatoes and 3 cups tomato puree (OR alternative tomato option from above)
  • 1/2 tsp of the following spices: cumin, salt, pepper, chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp of the following spices: cayenne, red pepper flakes (optional)
  • (1 roasted Spaghetti Squash – optional)


  1. The night before you want to make chili, soak the 3 cups of beans (I do half black, half red kidney) in lots of water. (6-7 cups) After 8-12 hours of soaking, drain and refrigerate until ready to prepare.
  2. Place beans, 4 cups of water, and 3 cups of vegetable broth (optional) in large pot. Bring to a boil and reduce to a low simmer. Cook for about 1 hour. This may take longer if you are using salted broth – possibly 2-3 hours and additional water.
  3. While the beans are cooking, go play on Facebook (hah) or prepare vegetables. Chop onion, mince garlic, shred or dice carrots, dice the 4 tomatoes, and clean and roughly chop the kale.
  4. Once the beans are cooked, drain them and set aside.
  5. Rinse pot and return it to stove, with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Sauté for about 5 minutes over medium heat, then add the garlic for about 3 more minutes. Next, add the tomatoes and sauté for about 5 minutes, or until the tomatoes are soft and mushy.
  6. Next, add the carrots, chopped kale, 3 cups tomato puree, 1 cup vegetable broth (or water), and all of the spices. Mix together well, cover, and simmer on low to medium heat for about an hour, stirring and tasting occasionally. Adjust taste to your preference or add additional seasonings. I’ve made this on a Sunday afternoon and let it cook for 4 hours before over low heat, so whatever is convenient for your day!
  7. After one hour, remove lid, stir, and cook uncovered for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. This will help the chili firm up and remove the soupy consistency. You can even smash some of the beans along the side to thicken the consistency if you prefer. Vegetarian Chili
  8. Serve over roasted spaghetti squash with toppings of choice: a dollop of greek yogurt, shredded cheddar or feta cheese, cilantro, or avocado. Vegetarian Chili and Spaghetti Squash
  9. One last note. Sometimes I like to chop up a nice spicy chili pepper like aji, or whatever else I’ve got, to add a different depth of flavor. If you do this, sauté it with the onions, and go easy on the dry spices like chili, cayenne, and red pepper flakes.
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 40 mins
  • Category: Chili, Stew, Entree
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