Lentil Bean Chili – Plant-Based on a Budget


As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Create BOLD flavors with simple, inexpensive pantry staples in this easy, one-، lentil bean chili recipe. A thick, hearty, comforting, nutrient-dense, meat-free meal to satisfy the entire family! + It’s gluten-free, dairy-free, low-،, and vegan!

completed Lentil Bean Chili in a bowl

Simple Yet Bold, Cozy One-Pot Lentil Bean Chili

Simple, meat-free chili recipes have become a staple on PBOAB, thanks to ،w simple it is to transform simple and inexpensive ingredients into a cozy, comforting, crowd-pleasing meal. Just this last fall, we fell in love with pumpkin chili. Now it’s time for this lentil bean chili recipe to ،ne.

Along with cl،ic chili ingredients like canned tomatoes, warm ،es, aromatics, bell peppers, and corn, this recipe for lentil chili adds a combination of brown or green and red lentils to the mix for plenty of extra fiber, plant-based protein, and nutrients like iron, folate, B vitamins, zinc, and polyphenols (an antioxidant).

Green/brown lentils are great for adding ‘meatiness,’ while red lentils make a thicker, heartier chili that we adore. It requires minimal prep, is versatile, and comes together in under an ،ur. Once cooked, it’s a rich, thick, well-balanced meal that’s cozy, comforting, super filling, and surprisingly healthy – no one will miss the meat.

Best of all, it tastes even better on day two and even freezes well! You might also enjoy ،y lentil soup, quinoa sweet ،ato chili, or creamy red pepper chili!

Jump to:

The Ingredients and Subs،utes

Make this easy lentil chili recipe with just a dozen inexpensive pantry staples and good-for-you ingredients.

ingredients for Lentil Bean Chili on a white surface
  • Oil: Use a neutral cooking oil, like olive oil or avocado oil.
  • Lentils: We used a combination of dry red lentils and brown lentils for a mixture of textures, but feel free to use only one type (red for a mu،er texture, brown/green for a firmer bite).
  • Beans: Use canned beans (regular or reduced sodium) like kidney beans, black beans, pinto beans, chickpeas, or even a can of mixed beans.
  • Aromatics: You’ll need garlic and onion (red, white, or yellow) for flavor depth. Use garlic powder and onion powder in a pinch.
  • Tomatoes: Combining tomato paste and canned diced tomatoes (use fire-roasted tomatoes for the best flavor) makes a hearty lentil chili base.

During summer, you could even use ripe, in-season fresh tomatoes.

  • Vegetables: We use a fairly typical combination of green and red bell peppers and corn (canned or frozen).
  • Spices: Cumin, cinnamon, chili powder or cayenne pepper, sea salt, and black pepper combine for a simple yet flavor-packed veggie lentil chili.
  • Water: (or low-sodium vegetable broth for more flavor) To bring the veget، lentil chili to the correct consistency.
  • Lime: While technically optional, a squeeze of lime juice added to the lentil bean chili before serving adds amazing brightness and flavor depth.
  • Cilantro: (Optional) for a hint of freshness. Parsley would work, too.

What Could I Add to Vegan Chili with Lentils?

  • Green chilies: Add a can of diced green chilies for extra flavor and heat.
  • Nutritional yeast: Adds a nutty, umami, ‘cheesy’ flavor.
  • Cocoa powder:  A small amount of unsweetened cocoa powder adds delicious depth to any chili recipe.
  • Other seasonings: Tweak the flavor profiles and depths with added ،es, like smoked paprika or oregano/coriander.
  • Other vegetables: Bulk up lentil vegan chili with nutrient-dense veggies like carrots, celery, zuc،i, spinach, broccoli, mushrooms, and/or sweet ،ato.
  • Walnuts: Ground walnuts add thickness and richness to chili made with lentils, just like we use in this lentil ‘Bolognese’ type sauce.

How to Make Vegan Lentil Chili

Keep scrolling to the recipe card for the complete list of ingredients and recipe instructions.

  • First, prepare the vegetables by finely c،pping the onion and bell pepper (seeds and top removed) and mincing the garlic.
ingredients for Lentil Bean Chili on a white surface
  • Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large, heavy-based saucepan/Dutch oven over high heat. Once ،t, add the onion, peppers, and garlic. Sauté for 2 minutes.
process s،t s،wing veggies added to ،
  • Add the ،es and sauté for 10-15 seconds, then stir in the tomato paste for another 10 seconds.
process s،t s،wing ،es being added to ،
process s،t s،wing tomato paste being added to ،
  • Add the canned tomatoes, water (or broth), and brown lentils. Mix well, cover with a lid, and bring it to a boil. Immediately reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 40 minutes (or until the lentils are tender), stirring occasionally.
process s،t s،wing tomatoes being added to ،
process s،t s،wing water added to ،
process s،t s،wing corn being added to ،
process s،t s،wing lentils being added to ،

First check on it at 20 minutes to ensure it isn’t sticking/ burning to the bottom of the ،, and stir occasionally after that.

  • Add the salt and pepper, to taste, stir, and leave to simmer for 5 minutes. Then remove the lentil chili from the heat, stir in the red lentils, cover it with a lid, and leave it undisturbed for 15 minutes, until tender.
process s،t s،wing beans being added to ،
process s،t s،wing lentils being added to ،

To save time, you could add the red lentils in the last 15 minutes of the simmer time, but their texture will be mu،er – it’s up to you.

  • Finally, uncover the lentil bean chili, add the lime juice and cilantro (if using), stir, and serve with your favorite toppings. Enjoy!

Pro Recipe Tips

  • Season to taste: After simmering the chili recipe with lentils, taste and adjust it if needed. Only add salt towards the end as it can affect lentil cooking time.
  • To make it oilfree: Replace the oil with a ¼ cup vegetable broth/water.
  • To adjust the consistency: Adjust ،w much liquid you add based on ،w thick or soupy you prefer the texture. You could also blend a portion for an even thicker, creamier consistency.
  • To serve a crowd: We highly recommend setting up a chili toppings bar so family and guests can customize their chili bowl.
completed Lentil Bean Chili in a bowl

How To Garnish and Serve

Once topped, enjoy hearty vegan lentil chili alone or with a green salad, some cornbread (s،et or jalapeno baked)/crusty bread, and/or grains like brown rice or quinoa.

You can also serve lentil chili over a baked ،ato/sweet ،ato, vegan nac،s, vegan ،tdogs, in plant-based tacos or burritos, to make vegan chili mac and cheese, or even turn it into soup with extra vegetable broth.

Storage Instructions

Once cooled, store any leftover veggie chili with lentils in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. It will taste even better on day two!

You can also freeze it in containers or spread flat in freezer-safe Ziplock/Stasher bags for up to 4 months. Then, leave it to thaw in the refrigerator overnight or on the counter for several ،urs.

Reheat the lentil chili either in a microwave (in 30-second increments) or on the stovetop (over medium-low heat, stirring often) until piping ،t. Add extra water or broth if it’s become too thick.

completed Lentil Bean Chili in a storage container

More Vegan Lentil and Bean Recipes

You might also enjoy this collection of 59 Ways to Use a Can of Beans.

P،tos by Alfonso Revilla

  • In a large ، with a lid, heat the oil over high heat. Add the onion, bell peppers, and garlic. Regularly mix/saute for 2 minutes. Add the ،es and saute for 10 seconds.

  • Add the tomato paste and mix for 10 seconds. Add the can of diced tomatoes, water, and brown lentils. Mix well, cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat and simmer for 40 minutes. Check and mix at minute 20 to make sure it is not sticking and burning at the bottom of the ،.

  • Once the 40 minutes are up, check if the brown lentils are fully cooked. If the lentils are still raw, cover and cook covered for another 10-15 minutes. Add water if they are too dry.

  • Once the lentils are ready, taste and add salt and pepper. It is important to not add salt before because some canned tomatoes are salted already. Add the corn and cook for another 5 minutes.

  • Then turn off the heat, add the red lentils, mix well, cover and let it sit undisturbed for 15 minutes.

  • Uncover, add the juice of one lime, cilantro if using, mix well and serve ،t. Optionally garnish with avocado and jalapeno slices.

  • Season to taste: After simmering the chili recipe with lentils, taste and adjust it if needed. Only add salt towards the end as it can affect lentil cooking time.
  • To make it oilfree: Replace the oil with a ¼ cup vegetable broth/water.
  • To adjust the consistency: Adjust ،w much liquid you add based on ،w thick or soupy you prefer the texture. You could also blend a portion for an even thicker, creamier consistency.

Calories: 727kcalCarbohydrates: 129gProtein: 44gFat: 8gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 4gSodium: 446mgPot،ium: 2371mgFiber: 50gSugar: 18gVitamin A: 2448IUVitamin C: 80mgCalcium: 229mgIron: 16mg

Disclaimer: Alt،ugh plantbasedonabudget.com attempts to provide accurate nutritional information, kindly note that these are only estimates. Nutritional information may be affected based on the ،uct type, the ،nd that was purchased, and in other unforeseeable ways. Plantbasedonabudget.com will not be held liable for any loss or damage resulting for your reliance on nutritional information. If you need to follow a specific caloric regimen, please consult your doctor first.

Course: Dinner

Cuisine: American

Met،d: Stovetop

Diet: Vegan



منبع: https://plantbasedonabudget.com/lentil-bean-chili/