Slow Cooker Sweet Potato Black Bean Chili

A vegetarian chili made in the slow cooker for all of you busy bodies! Prep the veggies ahead of time, throw them in the slow cooker and dinner will be waiting for you at the end of the day.

Slow cooker week is here! I’ve been testing these recipes for the past month and I’m SO excited to share them with you! I love slow cooker meals because you can dump everything in the slow cooker in the morning and come home to a healthy, home-cooked meal. AND your house smells amazing too. Such a great perk!

Slow cooker sweet potato and black bean vegetarian chili in a bowl topped with cilantro, cheese and jalapeño.

To kick things off with slow cooker week, I thought I’d answer a few questions for ya!

Are crock pots and slow cookers the same thing?

Pretty much! Up until writing this blog, I actually thought CrockPot was just a brand of a slow cooker, but looks like I was wrong! Both have three main components: pot, lid and heating component. The difference is that crockpots have porcelain or ceramic pots and slow cookers have metal pots. I have a Hamilton Beach slow cooker and I’m in love with ours because it’s programmable (so it switches to warm after the cook time).

Is it safe to leave a slow cooker on all day?

If you watch This Is Us, you may be questioning the safety of a slow cooker, and you might be scared to death to use your slow cooker while you’re not at home. While it’s not impossible for a fire to break out from a slow cooker, it’s highly unlikely. Just make sure your slow cooker isn’t a million years old and check for out of place metal pieces and wires. If something seems off, I recommend buying a new slow cooker!

Can I cook on high instead of low in a slow cooker?

I came across mixed reviews when researching for this post. The most common answer was no, don’t mess with the cooking temperature and time. The food in the slow cooker is meant to reach a simmer point, and then simmer for a set period of time, so I’d recommend following the directions!

Can you overcook food in a slow cooker?

Not if you follow the directions, but yes… it is possible. Most slow cookers are programmable and can be set to low or high and for a set number of hours. Once that time has been reached, they’ll turn to “warm” which just means they’ll keep your food warm until you’re ready to eat.

Vegetarian chili in a slow cooker made with sweet potatoes, black beans, peppers, and onions.

How to Make Chili in a slow cooker

Chili is a quintessential slow cooker meal, am I right?! I’m so excited to kick off slow cooker week with this sweet potato black bean chili. This chili does require a little bit of “pre-prep” because you’re cooking some of the veggies ahead of time, but it’s worth it for the extra flavor. Plus it is such an easy recipe once everything is in the slow cooker.

I start by roasting the sweet potato chunks. Season with olive oil, salt and pepper, throw them on a baking sheet and roast for ~30 minute (or until tender). While the potatoes are roasting, sauté your veggies in a skillet. Fun fact: you can actually sauté right in your slow cooker pot if it’s stovetop safe. One less dirty dish! Once the potatoes are roasted, just add them in with the sautéed peppers and onions to your slow cooker and add the canned tomatoes and black beans. Cover and cook on high for 2-3 hours or low for 4-5 hours. Badaboom, badabing, dinner is done! Serve with your favorite toppings and maybe even a side of tortilla chips or cornbread. I love serving chili with my pumpkin cornbread.

Slow cooker sweet potato and black bean vegetarian chili in a bowl topped with cilantro, cheese and jalapeño.

If you make this slow cooker sweet potato black bean chili, please be sure to leave a comment and star rating below letting me know how it turns out. Your feedback is so helpful for the EBF team and other EBF readers.

Slow Cooker Sweet Potato Black Bean Chili

4 from 11 votes
A vegetarian chili made in the slow cooker for all of you busy bodies! Prep the veggies ahead of time, throw them in the slow cooker and dinner will be waiting for you at the end of the day.
Slow cooker sweet potato and black bean vegetarian chili in a bowl topped with cilantro, cheese and jalapeño with a spoon on a white table.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Servings 4

Ingredients

  • 1 Tablespoon + 1 teaspoon olive oil, divided
  • 1 medium sweet potato, peeled and chopped
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 red or orange bell peppers, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 28 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 2 Tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 ⁄2 teaspoon sea salt
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
  • pinch of cinnamon
  • Toppings: avocado, cilantro, sliced jalapeño, cashew sour cream

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 375°F. Add sweet potato chunks to a baking sheet, toss with 1 teaspoon of olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt. Roast for 25-30 minutes, until tender. This step can be done a day or two in advance.
  • Start prepping chili by adding 1 Tablespoon olive oil to a skillet. Once oil is hot, add in the chopped onion, bell peppers and garlic. Sauté for 5-7 minutes until onions are fragrant and translucent. Add chili powder, salt, cayenne and cinnamon. Toss to combine and cook for 1 minute longer.
  • Transfer cooked onions and peppers into your slow cooker. Add in roasted sweet potato chunks, black beans and diced tomatoes. Cook on high for 2-3 hours or low for 4-5 hours.
  • When ready to serve, top with your favorite chili toppings like avocado, cilantro, jalapeño or even cashew sour cream.

Notes

Nutrition

Serving: 1/4 of recipe Calories: 274kcal Carbohydrates: 44g Protein: 10g Fat: 7g Fiber: 13g Sugar: 13g
Course: Lunch/Dinner
Cuisine: American
Keyword: slow cooker vegetarian chili, sweet potato black bean chili

DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE?

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Recipe Rating




    21 comments
    1. Anne
      March 4, 2021 AT 5:40 pm

      5 stars
      Wow, this was really great!
      I usually make meat dishes, but I thought I’d try something on the vegetarian side.
      Neither of us are a fan of hot spicy foods, so I did not add the cayenne.
      Such a different taste for chili, we loved it! My boyfriend knew there was something in it that he couldn’t quite identify, and it turned out to be the cinnamon, which was a wonderful little pinch of flavor.
      I served it over plain white rice. We will certainly be having this again! And yes, I made a big batch so that we could freeze some.
      Thanks for a great idea for a vegetarian meal with plenty of fiber and great taste!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        March 5, 2021 AT 1:26 am

        So glad you loved this recipe, Anne!! Thanks so much for making it and for coming back to leave a review. I so appreciate it!

    2. Anna Clark
      March 3, 2021 AT 10:17 pm

      5 stars
      So tasty and so simple! My toddler loved it, too!

    3. Beth
      October 29, 2020 AT 8:59 pm

      5 stars
      We loved making this recipe with two of our favorite foods- sweet potatoes and black beans! The flavor was unique and different with the spices, and it was delicious to enjoy on a fall evening :).

      1. Brittany Mullins
        November 2, 2020 AT 12:28 am

        I’m glad you enjoyed this chili, Beth. Thanks for making it and for coming back to leave a review. I so appreciate it!

    4. Pamela
      October 6, 2020 AT 6:48 pm

      3 stars
      I made this chili today. I used crushed tomatoes because that’s what was in the pantry. Also added a can of whole kernel corn after cooking. If I make this again I will use the diced tomatoes for a less thick chili. I also added some fresh herbs – oregano, basil, parsley, & bay leaves.

    5. Blair Wade
      October 3, 2020 AT 9:06 am

      Hi Brittany! Could I make this without pre-roasting sweet potatoes? Seems like they would cook in the chili if cooked on low long enough. Maybe I’m just being lazy! Thanks, love your site and Instagram.

      1. Brittany Mullins
        October 3, 2020 AT 10:03 pm

        Hey Blair – I would think that’d be fine just adding the sweet potatoes directly in the chili. They should cook just fine. Let me know how it turns out for you!

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