January 2, 2021
Vegetarian White Bean Chili
Vegetarian White Bean Chili! Packed with spice and so much rich flavor, you won't miss the meat!
Serves 6

Vegetarian White Bean Chili! This White Bean Chili recipe is Gluten-Free and easily Vegan! SO much flavor in this one, you won’t miss the meat! First published in 2015 and updated in 2021. 

vegetarian white bean chili

This vegetarian white bean chili. ❤️  We arrived home from our mini vacation on Saturday afternoon to 30 degree weather and a slight sprinkle of snow flurries. So we did what all good California kids now living in the Midwest do; turned on the fireplace, wrapped ourselves in blankets, and ate this chili as we plowed through the Queens Gambit. Or, as I like to call it, Netflix and Chili.

Though I have dozens of chili recipes on my site, this one is my favorite comfort option. A rich and hearty white bean chili topped with sour cream, shredded cheese, scallions and cilantro. It’s both vegetarian and easily vegan using dairy-free sour cream and cheese options. For a dairy-free white bean chili, I highly recommend Kite Hill‘s Sour Cream and the shredded cheddar from Violife. I’ve tried so many dairy-free brands over the years, and these two options are my top picks for this recipe. 

vegetarian white bean chili

This vegetarian white bean chili recipe is unbelievable. I snagged the recipe from a long-time family friend whose white chicken chili may have been my favorite soup of all time. I’ve made just a few tweaks to it, swapping in white beans for the chicken and pureeing some of the chili to add extra creaminess without any cream. 

It’s all about the spice profile in this white chili dish, so don’t be tempted to skip a spice or two because I only call for 1/8 or 1/4 teaspoon. It matters! The combination of chili powder, cumin, cloves, and oregano give this chili an unexpected warmth and depth.

 

vegetarian white bean chili

How to Make Vegetarian White Bean Chili

My family friends original recipe calls for fresh chopped tomatoes, though since I usually make this in the dead of winter, I’ve opted for canned tomatoes instead. I included both options in the directions and both ways have been tested and come out great. 

The flavor of this chili is from the unique spice mix and canned green chilis. If you like extra heat, like I do, then I highly recommend adding in a little more cayenne pepper. Once the spices have bloomed with the canned white beans and tomatoes, your chili is almost ready to go. 

Blend 2 cups of the chili in a blender (or use an immersion blender) then add back to the chili. This trick creates a thick, creamy chili without the need for any additional cream like many white chili recipes. 

vegetarian white bean chili

What chili toppings are best?

Toppings are a must. Sure, the white bean chili base is outstanding on its own but the layers of flavor and texture is what makes chili, chili.

After scooping out a generous portion into my bowl, I create a chili masterpiece with fresh diced tomatoes, shredded cheese, sour cream, and scallions. Chopped red onions, avocado, hot sauce are also highly recommended. There’s really no wrong when it comes to topping chili! 

vegetarian white bean chili

 

If you try this vegetarian white bean chili recipe, let me know! Leave a comment, rate it, and tag your Instagram photos with #delishknowledge . I absolutely love seeing your creations. Happy cooking! 

Print
vegetarian white bean chili

Vegetarian White Bean Chili

  • Author: Alex Caspero
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4 -6 servings 1x
  • Category: soup, stew, chili, vegan, glutenfree
  • Method: stove top
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

Vegetarian White Bean Chili! This White Bean Chili recipe is Gluten-Free and easily Vegan! SO much flavor in this one, you won’t miss the meat!


  • Author: Alex Caspero
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4 -6 servings 1x
  • Category: soup, stew, chili, vegan, glutenfree
  • Method: stove top
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegetarian
  • Author: Alex Caspero
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4 -6 servings 1x
  • Category: soup, stew, chili, vegan, glutenfree
  • Method: stove top
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegetarian
Scale

Ingredients

  • 3 large fresh tomatoes (about 1.5 pounds) OR 1 (14 ounce) can diced tomatoes with juice
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ cup chopped white onion
  • 1 can (4 ounces) mild chopped green chilies
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1.5 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • scant 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 (15 ounce) cans navy beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 (15 ounce) cans Cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 lime, juiced (about 2 teaspoons)
  • Sour Cream (vegan or regular), for topping
  • Shredded Cheese (regular or dairy-free), for topping
  • Sliced scallions, for topping

Instructions

  1. If using fresh tomatoes, core and coarsely chop tomatoes; set aside.
  2. Heat the oil in a in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and cook until tender, about 5 minutes.
  3. Stir in chilies, garlic, cumin, oregano, sugar, cloves, red pepper, chili powder and tomatoes. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes are softened, about 5 minutes.
  4. Add broth and beans; bring to a low boil, then cover and reduce heat to low, simmer for 15 minutes.
  5. Remove 2 cups and place in a blender and puree until creamy, then add back to the soup. Alternatively, use an immersion blender to puree a bit of the soup– you want the base to be creamy while still keeping much of the texture with the whole beans.
  6. Season to taste, if needed, with salt and pepper or cayenne for more heat. Stir in the lime juice just before serving.
  7. Top with sour cream, scallions and shredded cheese.

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Meet Alex Caspero

Alex Caspero is a Registered Dietitian, Plant-Based Chef and Yoga Instructor. She aims to cut through the nutrition noise by providing real-life, nourishing tips for body and mind. Learn more about Alex.

18 comments
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  1. Looking to make this for Super Bowl Sunday but wondering if I could slow cook it in the crock pot to prep other dishes and let it simmer longer. Any suggestion how long I should put on low in crock pot? Ps… dish looks delish btw and looking forward to making it for our close covid pod. 🙂

    • Thanks, Meredith. Yeah– I think the slow cooker would work! Maybe 4-5 hours on low? That’s typically what I do with other soups and it works well!

    • Hi Lisa, 5 tomatoes usually equals a 15ounce can, so I’d use 3/4 of a can. But, the nice thing about chili is that it’s super adaptable. You can add more/less if you like!

    • Very nice on a cold January evening. I love to get fiber and the flavors were perfect. Thanks much!

  2. I’m not planning on using fresh tomatoes. I am going to use a can of diced tomatoes. What size should the can be? Cans of diced tomatoes generally come in 10, 14.5 or 28 ounces. Thanks!

  3. Ugh to Snow but Yum to chili!! Hope you will enjoy your Midwest winter! I see lots of warming recipes coming from you in the future 😉

  4. Ugh to Snow but Yum to chili!! Hope you will enjoy your Midwest winter! I see lots of warming recipes coming from you in the future 😉

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