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This oil-free Slow Cooker Vegetarian Chili features tri-color bell peppers and three kinds of beans, but the true star is the butternut squash! Keep it totally vegan by using vegan toppings such as fresh cilantro, scallions, avocado and vegan cheddar-style shredded cheese. Perfect for chilly fall or cold winter days and great for game day too!
This vegetarian chili is so good, all of your omnivore friends and family members will not miss the meat!
How do I know this? Weeeeeeell, a little birdie told me.
OK, fine...it wasn't a birdie; it was a man.
And he wasn't little; he was pretty tall.
Soooo, of course I am talking about Greg and how he repeatedly stated several times throughout eating this meal: "You don't need the meat...you just don't need it."
What makes this chili special is not the three kinds of beans.
Nor is it the colorful red, yellow and orange bell peppers.
It's not the combination of spices either.
It is the star ingredient...
DRUM ROLL PLEASE ?
This autumn/winter favorite has a meaty texture, yet adds a sweet and subtle flavor to this dish.
The butternut squash adds the perfect amount of creaminess to this meal.
Combined with protein packed pinto, dark kidney and cannellini beans, this vegan chili is a powerhouse of a meal!
The butternut squash adds the perfect amount of creaminess to this meal. Instead, top with fresh cilantro and scallions to complement the flavors found in this chili.
Now for the best part...
This vegan chili is super easy to make in your slow cooker!
How to Make Vegetarian Chili in the Slow Cooker
Add the kidney beans, pinto beans and cannellini beans to your slow cooker.
Next, add the bell peppers and jalapeno.
Then, add the onion, garlic and butternut squash.
Now add the crushed tomatoes.
Then, add chili powder, cumin, cayenne pepper and salt.
Stir to combine all of the ingredients. Then, cover the slow cooker and cook on high for 4-6 hours until squash is tender.
Serving Suggestions for Vegan Chili
When you're ready to serve, garnish with fresh cilantro and/or scallions. You can also top with some sliced avocado, vegan sour cream, our homemade guacamole and/or vegan cheddar-style shreds.
Serve over rice or with tortilla chips or our oil-free cheesy vegan biscuits.
Keep the chili warming in your slow cooker and it makes for the perfect game day or party food!
Storing & Reheating
Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
Alternatively, leftovers can also be frozen in an airtight container for up to 6 months. Be sure to fully thaw the frozen chili in the refrigerator before reheating.
Leftover chili is best reheated on the stovetop in a covered pot over medium heat, stirring occasionally until fully heated throughout.
You might also enjoy:
- Vegan Casserole with Chickpeas and Butternut Squash
- Roasted Butternut Squash and Brussels Sprouts with Pomegranate
- Vegan Butternut Squash Soup
- Smashed Pinto Bean Tacos
- Vegan Pasta Fagioli
- Buffalo Chickpea Meatballs
Slow Cooker Vegetarian Chili
- 1 (15 oz.) can dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 (15 oz.) can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 (15 oz.) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped
- 1 yellow bell pepper, chopped
- 1 orange bell pepper, chopped
- 2 jalapenos, seeded and diced (or use 1 on the larger side)
- 1 yellow onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- 20 oz. cubed butternut squash, fresh not frozen - I purchase mine precut for convenience (approximately 4 cups)
- 2 (28 oz.) cans crushed tomatoes in puree
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- Sea salt or kosher salt to taste
- Add beans, bell peppers, jalapeno, onion, garlic, butternut squash, crushed tomatoes, chili powder, cumin, cayenne pepper and salt to your slow cooker and stir to combine.
- Cover and cook on high for 4-6 hours until squash is tender.
- Serve with desired toppings.
(Please refer to the post above for instructional photographs for this recipe)
This post originally appeared on Watch Learn Eat on October 15, 2015. It has been republished to reflect both recipe and photo revisions. Changes to the story were also made.
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