Hearty, healthy and perfect for entertaining, this Slow Cooker Vegetarian Chili with Baked Beans is delicious year round and couldn’t be any easier to make!
Chili is one of those fun, feel-good foods. I’m guessing it has something to do with memories of my childhood and the many occasions when my mom would make a big pot of chili for me and my siblings. Of course, my mom made a lot of different foods, but chili is one that will forever stand out (along with her epic taco salads and fettuccini alfredo).
Admittedly, this chili has little resemblance to the one my mom made. My mom always used ground beef with the beans, and though she did put in some vegetables, there were definitely less. Knowing what I know about health, I avoid red meat where it can be avoided (don’t worry, though- I’ll share my moms recipe one of these days).
If there is one thing I have adopted from my mother, it is her love for condiments and toppings. And whenever there was chili, there were plenty of garnishes.
But, I’ve gotten ahead of myself.
Let’s chat real quick about the baked beans. I don’t know if you guys know this or not, but typically chili recipes do not call for baked beans. I have no idea why this is since baked beans are the best thing ever (yes, even those vegetarian ones).
And, yess, I know that baked beans are typically filled with sugar, but considering the overall healthiness of this chili, I’d say you’re good (that is, of course, until you get to the garnishes). If you’re really worried about sugar, simply drain the liquid before adding the beans.
Ok, so back to garnishes…
Sour cream and shredded cheddar cheese are the classic chili toppings. At least in my world. I highly recommend both of those here. In addition, however, or at least in place of the cheese, definitely try queso dip. And some corn chips. And some chopped chives!
Oh, the chives! That little bit of freshness ties this big beautiful meal together!
Slow Cooker Vegetarian Chili with Baked Beans
Prep Time: 15 minutes | Cook Time: 6-8 hours
Total Time: approximately 6-8 hours
Yield: 8 servings
1 large yellow onion, chopped
3-4 ribs celery, chopped
4 large carrots, chopped
1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced
1 jalapeño, seeded and diced (omit if you’re sensitive to spicy food)
1 (15 ounce) can corn
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon red chili flakes
1 (15 ounce) can black beans, drained
1 (15 ounce) can kidney beans, drained
2 (15 ounce) cans vegetarian baked beans, in liquid
1 (15 ounce) can cannellini beans, drained
1 (15 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
Suggested Garnishes: sour cream or plain Greek yogurt, shredded cheese, queso cheese dip (I got mine from Trader Joe’s), crushed corn chips, fresh chopped chives.
Add all ingredients (except the optional garnishes) to an 8-quart slow cooker and mix well to combine. Place the lid on the slow cooker and cook on HIGH for 6-7 hours or on LOW for at least 8 hours. Season to taste.
When ready to serve, garnish as desired. Store leftovers in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 4-5 days.