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.

clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
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.

Slow Cooker Sweet Potato Black Bean Chili

  • Author: Brittany Mullins
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 3 hours
  • Total Time: 3 hours 10 minutes
  • Yield: 4


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.


  • 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


  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. When ready to serve, top with your favorite chili toppings like avocado, cilantro, jalapeño or even cashew sour cream.


  • Category: Lunch/Dinner
  • Method: Slow Cooker
  • Cuisine: American


  • Serving Size: 1/4 of recipe
  • Calories: 274
  • Sugar: 13g
  • Fat: 7g
  • Carbohydrates: 44g
  • Fiber: 13g
  • Protein: 10g

Keywords: sweet potato black bean chili, slow cooker vegetarian chili

This post may include affiliate links. Thank you for your support.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe rating

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

      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!

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

      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.

    3. 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!

    4. Saskia
      September 29, 2020 AT 6:30 pm

      What size slow cooker do you recommend? Apologies if I read past it

      1. Brittany Mullins
        September 30, 2020 AT 1:15 am

        I have a 6 quart one!

        1. Saskia
          October 3, 2020 AT 9:34 pm

          Was so good!

    5. Janet
      February 22, 2020 AT 11:05 pm

      This recipe turned out fantastic. I made it for a dinner party and everyone loved it! I didn’t have time to use my slow cooker so I just cooked it stove top; it still turned out really great. The avocado and sour cream on top was a perfect touch. Thank you for sharing!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        February 23, 2020 AT 2:43 pm

        So glad this recipe was a hit, Janet!! 🙂

    6. Eliza Porter
      February 7, 2020 AT 10:33 am

      Obsessed with this chili! I have made it several times now and absolutely love it. It’s perfect to make the whole batch and have leftovers for the week. It’s filling without making you feel like you overate. You have become our go-to when we are looking for new recipes to try out!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        February 7, 2020 AT 6:35 pm

        Ahh that makes me so happy to hear!! SO glad you’re loving this chili. Thanks for coming back to leave a review. It’s super helpful to other readers, so I appreciate it. 🙂

    7. Brittany
      August 27, 2019 AT 12:09 am

      I made the freezer version of this recipe and it was AMAZING! I was looking forward to it ever since putting it in the freezer. I had it with Greek yogurt, avocado, and jalapeño and I can’t stop thinking about it. I now keep multiple freezer bags full for those days I need something to pop in the slow cooker for dinner! Thank you!!!

    8. Chris Harvey
      March 14, 2019 AT 2:34 pm

      Really tasty and very easy to do. This volume of chilli is unnecessary though, recommend cutting that in half (at least).

      1. Dawn
        September 27, 2020 AT 2:01 pm

        I think it’s part of her freezer meal prep so it’s supposed to yield a lot 😊

    9. Sarah
      March 6, 2019 AT 11:35 pm

      So yummy and full of all the right ingredients to make you feel good, not gross after chili! I made this last night when I got home from work and let it cook in the crock pot until I went to bed. I’m not the fastest chopper, so ingredient prep always takes me a little longer than any recipe states, but it was fairly easy to make this recipe. We ate it tonight for dinner and will again tomorrow. Delicious! I didn’t add any toppings, but I think a spoonful of plain greek yogurt might be the right touch to bring out the full flavor and add some creamy thickness tomorrow.

    10. Lisa
      February 27, 2019 AT 8:50 pm

      Hi.what if i wanna add chicken? Do i need to cook it first or just put it raw in the slow cooker?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        February 28, 2019 AT 8:13 am

        You can just put the chicken into the slow cooker with the other ingredients. Once it’s cooked through and you can take the chicken out and shredded it, then add it back into your slow cooker with the chili.

Subscribe + get eating!

Grab your Free 3 Day Clean Eating Meal Plan

Subscribe to our list and get your free printable PDF of the 3 Day Clean Eating Meal Plan and Shopping List!