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Instant Pot Vegetarian Chili

1 Review

Vegetarian chili that is so hearty and flavorful, you won’t even miss the meat! Full of beans, veggies, and seasonings…perfect for a cold winter’s eve!

Cade and I rarely turn on the TV anymore. There just is not any time. We get up at 5:30 to workout which means we go to bed earlier than others and because we’ve got a teenager, phew, there’s no real alone time! Well, unless we are on a date which we try to do once a week.

But!!! The other night we watched a documentary about athletes using plant based diets and it was fascinating! While we aren’t going vegetarian or vegan any time soon, we did decide to eat a more balanced diet which will mean more veggies and less meat than we are used to. And it’s feeling amazing!

A photo of a bowl of vegetarian chili topped with shredded cheese and slices of fresh jalapeno.

This chili is totally vegetarian but tastes like it has meat! It is crazy and it’s the recipe that sold me on eating better! We include instructions for cooking it on the stove top and in the slow cooker too!

Instant Pot Cheat Sheet

Before you do anything, if you’re new to the instant pot, please check out our Instant Pot Cheat Sheet Post. You are going to want to save that sucker to your phone for fast and easy use! It will SAVE YOUR LIFE!!

Check out our Instant Pot Cheat Sheet Here.

Vegetarian Chili Ingredients

Chances are you have most of these ingredients in your pantry or fridge already. This is the perfect blend of beans, veggies and seasonings for the most delicious vegetarian chili.

  • Sweet Potato – adding a peeled and diced sweet potato gives the chili a full hearty texture
  • Beans – we like doing a blend of beans (chili beans and black beans) to add a variety of color and size, one of the cans of black beans can even be replaced by a can of pinto beans for even more variety (be sure to drain them)
  • Vegetables – the blend of veggies is my favorite part – canned tomatoes, tomato paste, red onion, red and yellow bell pepper, jalapeno and garlic
  • Liquids – vegetable stock and Worchestershire sauce
  • Seasonings – oregano, cumin, Kosher salt, black pepper, smoked paprika and chili powder

Did you have it all already? I hope so! Now you are ready to make this delicious chili!

A photo of a bowl of hearty vegetarian chili topped with shredded cheese and sliced jalapeno.

How to Make Vegetarian Chili?

We have loved making this in the Instant Pot. I makes dinner so quick and easy, but we know you all want instructions for stove top and slow cooker too. We aim to please so here you go:

Instant Pot

Set the Instant Pot to “saute”, add a little oil and saute the peppers and onions until tender. Add all the remaining ingredients and stir to combine thoroughly. Change the Instant Pot setting to “chili” (or “manual” if you don’t have the “chili” setting). Set the Instant Pot to cook for 18-20 minutes. Allow it to release pressure for 10-15 minutes naturally or flip the quick release valve.

The chili will usually be done after 18 minutes, but there have been a couple of times the beans weren’t quite as tender or flavorful as we like. So we pressure cooked them for a few more minutes and they were perfect.

A photo of a bowl of hearty vegetarian chili topped with shredded cheese and sliced jalapeno with two spoons sitting next to the bowl.

Stove Top

For making the vegetarian chili on the stove top, just simply add all the ingredients into a large pot, bring it to a boil and lower the heat and let it simmer for 3 hours.

Slow Cooker

To make the chili in a slow cooker, saute the onions and peppers first until tender, and then add everything to slow cooker and cook for 5-6 hours on low or for 3 hours on high.

A photo of a bowl of vegetarian chili topped with shredded cheese and slices of fresh jalapeno.

What to Eat with Vegetarian Chili?

I personally love cornbread with my chili! My kids prefer our out of this world potato rolls. A slice (or two) of easy no knead artisan bread is also phenomenal if you want a delicious crusty bread! And you definitely can’t go wrong with a side of our delicious cheesy jiffy cornbread casserole.

What Makes Chili Chili?

If you go to the classic dictionary definition, a chili is a spicy dish made with ground beef, hot peppers or chili powder, beans more often than not. Other sources say that all you need for a true chili is meat, tomatoes, and some sort of heat. Many people are adamant that chili should not contain beans ever. So I say you can call whatever you want “chili”, beans/no beans, meat/meatless, heat/no heat…it all counts!

A photo of a bowl of hearty vegetarian chili topped with shredded cheese and sliced jalapeno with two spoons sitting next to the bowl.


How Long Will Chili Keep?

Cooked chili will keep in the fridge for 3-4 days if it is properly stored in an airtight container. Chili also freezes well. Let it cool completely, place it in an airtight container (like a ziploc bag or a Food Saver bag), lay it flat and it will keep in the freezer for up to 2 months.

Does Chili Have to Be Refrigerated?

Yes! Anything that has been cooked with perishable ingredients in it, should be refrigerated. Even though there is not any meat in this recipe it still needs to be refrigerated. 


How to Keep Your Tupperware From Staining

Now listen, anything with a red sauce of liquid can stain your storage container, so one handy trick I like to use is to spray the container with nonstick spray before ever pouring in the soup or sauce. 

Do Vegetarians Eat Dairy?

Yes, vegetarians eat dairy products. However, vegans do not. Vegans do not eat any animal products.

A photo of a bowl of hearty vegetarian chili topped with shredded cheese and sliced jalapeno with two spoons sitting next to the bowl.

Does anyone do Meatless Mondays? I’m thinking we are going to start that up and maybe one more night a week to! This Instant Pot Vegetarian Chili is first on the list!

More Vegetarian Recipes:

A photo of a bowl of vegetarian chili topped with shredded cheese and slices of fresh jalapeno.

Instant Pot Vegetarian Chili

4 from 1 vote
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 18 minutes
Servings: 10


  • 1 Sweet Potato peeled and diced small
  • 1 Can Chili Beans 15 oz. Western, (meatless, not to be confused with a can of chili, it’s different)
  • 2 Cans Black Beans 15 oz. cans,drained (or 1 black and 1 pinto beans)
  • 1 can Tomatoes 15 ounces,  Fire Roasted, diced
  • 1 Can Tomato paste 6 oz.
  • 1 Red Onion large, chopped
  • 1 Red Bell Pepper seeded and chopped
  • 1/2 Orange Bell Pepper minced
  • 1 Jalapeño seeded and minced *optional
  • 2 Cups Vegetable Stock
  • 1 Tablespoon Oregano dried
  • 2 teaspoons Cumin ground
  • 2 teaspoons Kosher Salt
  • 1 teaspoon Black Pepper ground
  • 1 teaspoon Smoked Paprika
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons Chili Powder
  • 1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce *see note
  • 1 Tablespoon Garlic minced


For The Instant Pot

  • Turn the instant pot to saute. Add a few drops of vegetable oil. Add the peppers and onion and cook until tender.
  • Add all the remaining ingredients, and stir to combine.
  • Turn the instant pot to chili and cook for 18-20 minutes.* Allow pressure to release for 10-15 minutes, or quick release with valve.
  • Serve with limes, sour cream and cheese.
  • *Most batches will be done after 18 minutes, however we've had a few times when the flavor just wasn't there yet, so feel free to pressure cook a little longer for more flavor or if your beans are not as tender as you'd like.

For the Stove

  • Put everything in and large pot, bring to a boil and then allow to simmer for 3 hours.

For the Slow Cooker

  • Cook onion and peppers until tender.
  • Add everything to the slow cooker and cook on low for 5-6 hours or on high for 3 hours.

To Freeze

  • Cool chili completely. Place in a large ziploc bag or FoodSaver, removing all the air. Freeze by laying flat for up to 2 months.


There are anchovies in Worchestershire sauce, so omit if you want to keep it vegetarian. However, it adds a depth of flavor.
Nutrition Facts
Instant Pot Vegetarian Chili
Amount Per Serving
Calories 155 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Fat 1g2%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Sodium 1142mg50%
Potassium 694mg20%
Carbohydrates 30g10%
Fiber 9g38%
Sugar 7g8%
Protein 8g16%
Vitamin A 3251IU65%
Vitamin C 30mg36%
Calcium 58mg6%
Iron 3mg17%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

A photo of a bowl of vegetarian chili topped with shredded cheese and slices of fresh jalapeno.


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About the authors

carrian feik cheney oh sweet basil

Cade and Carrian have three children and love to spend time together whether it’s vacationing or snuggled up on the couch for a good movie.

And this family especially loves to eat.

They love everything from the keep you fit and healthy to the get out your sweat pants indulgent and everything in between.

But most of all, they love the memories made, shared and treasured and it’s all thanks to a meal shared together with loved ones.

Leave a comment


  • I love a big bowl of chilli on a cold night, I like the sound of yours. I’ll definitely add a splash of Worcestershire sauce to the next batch I make!

    • Reply
    • That sounds like a great idea!

      • Reply
      • I am excited to try this out tonight. Thanks for all your great recipes! I think that if you want to make it “vegetarian”, though, you’d have to leave out the Worcestershire sauce, because it’s made with anchovies, unless you buy a special vegetarian type.

      • Thank you for the tip Cindy! I hope you enjoyed this!

      • Oh shoot! I had no idea! Ok, I’ll add a note. You can totally omit it, but it does enhance the flavor.

  • Hi, where can I find the chili beans in Canada? Is there a replacement for it if I am not able to find it.

    • Reply
    • If you can’t find chili beans, I would replace them with pinto beans. They are the closest in size and texture to chili beans. If you want a little meatier bean, you could use a can of kidney beans.

      • Reply

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