Skillet Vegetarian Chili

Skillet Vegetarian Chili
I wanted to make an easy, healthy, relatively quick dinner for myself and my boyfriend last night. At first I thought about doing a salad that I’ve had in my repertoire for a while, but given the cold weather we’ve been having, I wanted to go more in the direction of comfort food. I decided to make this skillet vegetarian chili.

I’m a big fan of meals that come together more or less in one pan. When I bake, I don’t mind using multiple bowls and utensils, but when I cook, I’m more impatient. I don’t like chopping and I really don’t like mincing, so after that’s done I like to throw everything in a pot or pan and call it a day.

Cue: this skillet vegetarian chili. It comes together in one pan, it’s quick, AND it requires minimal effort and ingredients. It’s the perfect thing to make on a cold fall/winter night when you don’t feel like cooking.

I decided to add roasted sweet potatoes into the mix but you could skip this step. Yeah, they required a little more work but I think they were a good addition to the chili. They added some sweetness and I like how they paired with the spices in the dish.

You could use any kind of beans you want in this chili but I decided to use black beans and kidney beans. It isn’t chili to me without kidney beans.

Also, one of these days I’m going to soak my beans and use them instead of the canned kind. I know I just got done talking about how I hate to do extra steps when I cook but an exception to this rule is, will it make the dish taste better? If the answer is yes, I will do it. I’m curious as to what the difference would be.

ANYWAY. Make this chili as soon as possible. You can garnish it with whatever you want but I’d recommend lime juice, pickled onions (see below recipe), avocado, and Greek yogurt/sour cream. Next time I make this, I’m also going to make some cornbread to go with it.

Here’s a song to get you started on your skillet vegetarian chili journey.

Skillet Vegetarian Chili

for the sweet potatoes:
1 sweet potato, peeled and cut into small cubes
1 Tbsp olive oil
2 pinches of salt

for the pickled onions:
1 lime
1 medium red onion, thinly sliced
2 pinches of salt
1 pinch of sugar

for the chili:
olive oil for the pan
1 large red onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp dried oregano
1 15-oz can of black beans, drained
1 15-oz can of kidney beans, drained
1 15-oz can diced tomatoes
salt, to taste
avocado, lime, nonfat Greek yogurt, and black pepper for serving


First, make the sweet potatoes. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and place the sweet potato cubes on top. Toss them with olive oil and sprinkle them with salt. Spread them out and make sure they’re in an even layer. Roast them in the oven for about 30 minutes, or until they sizzling, soft, and browned.

Make the pickled onions by tossing the sliced red onion with the juice of one lime, salt, and sugar in a large bowl. Leave the bowl uncovered while you make the chili.

Heat a large skillet over medium heat and then add olive oil. Add the chopped onions and sauté them for a few minutes until they’re soft. Add the minced garlic, chili powder, and oregano, and stir until the mixture is fragrant. Add the black beans, kidney beans, tomatoes, and a pinch or two of salt. Bring the mixture to a boil and then down to a low simmer. Cook until the tomatoes break down, about 20 minutes. Five minutes before the mixture is done cooking, stir in the roasted sweet potatoes.

Serve with avocado, lime wedges, Greek yogurt, pickled onions, and black pepper. Enjoy!

About Emily Wasserman

Bonjour! My name is Emily and I'm a writer based in St. Louis. I'm also a home baker with a small business, Amélie Bakery. I'm a self-proclaimed francophile and love French pastries and baking.
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