Veggie – PACKED Chili

There can be as many definitions of chili as there are pizza. And NY Style Thin Crust vs Chicago Style Pan Pizza seems simple when compared to the Chili battles between Texas, Cincinnati or Chili Verde. Beans vs meat-only. Turkey vs chicken vs ground beef…or veggie! I’m not even going to touch the toppings or some Frito Chili Pie nonsense!

I posted one of my favorites, a Sweet Potato Turkey Chili in this blog, but this is ALL VEG and does have beans.

Winter holidays can lead to over-indulgence in some heavy and rich foods. After the guests have gone home and I’ve purged the leftovers from the refrigerator and feel up to cooking again I love to serve this veggie packed comfort dish. It can be easily made on the stove top or in a slow cooker. I love to use my Instant Pot to saute the aromatics and then add the remaining ingredients – bring to a boil, then set to slow cook until we’re ready to eat. Gotta love one pot cooking I do NOT have to babysit!

Veggie Chili

  • 2 T avocado oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 3 T garlic, crushed
  • 3 ribs celery, diced
  • 2 bell peppers, any color, diced
  • 1 large zucchini or 2 smaller yellow summer squash, diced
  • 2 14 oz cans of diced tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 cups black beans, rinsed and drained if using canned
  • 1 1/2 cups great northern beans, rinsed and drained if using canned
  • 2-3 cups of vegetable or chicken broth
  • 2 T cumin
  • 1 T chili powder
  • salt to taste
  1. Heat avocado oil and saute onion, garlic and celery until soft and fragrant.
  2. Add bell pepper and saute 2-3 minutes, add squash and tomatoes and bring to a boil.
  3. Add beans, broth and spices and return to a simmer for 5 minutes.
  4. Taste broth and salt as needed. If you use canned beans and salted tomatoes and broth it may already be salty enough.
  5. Reduce heat to low simmer or transfer to slow cooker to cook on low until ready to serve.
  6. TOPPINGS???? See below…

Toppings can be as fundamental as beans or no beans, beef or chicken… My husband grew up eating tortilla chips, cheese and sour cream with his chili. I believe it was just cheese for me. Now, we do a bit of everything; cheese, chips, green onions, cilantro, avocado, not so much sour cream fans here.

Honestly, if you have picky kids and you want them to eat it – let them get creative with the toppings! Just make sure it’s not all chips and cheese, they have to eat the chili, too!

Refrigerate any left overs and freeze or enjoy with in 3 days.