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Sweet Potato and Black Bean Chili

Delicious, nutritious fare that’ll fill you up without weighing you down.

Asking a meal to be both hearty and healthy is a tall order, but this Sweet Potato and Black Bean Chili totally succeeds. It’s a vegetarian dish that will fill you up without weighing you down, and it happens to come with plenty of zesty, well-spiced flavor. Want more good news? It’ll only take you about thirty minutes to make and it’s perfect as a nutritious, delicious make-ahead lunch option.

As you probably already surmised, the main ingredient here is sweet potato, but you start by sauteing some onion and garlic before adding the sweet spuds.

Once everything has softened a bit, you stir in chili powder, cumin, paprika, and black beans, fire-roasted tomatoes, and some broth (or water) of your choice.

All that’s let to do is let the pot bubble away for a bit. Since there’s no meat that needs to get tender, about twenty minutes will do it. In that time, the flavors meld, the sweet potatoes soften, and all you have to do is stop by to stir it a time or two.

It can sometimes feel like healthier chilis are lacking in the flavor department, but that’s not the case at all with this one. I love the way sweetness of the sweet potatoes plays off the chili powder and cumin. It’s subtly smoky and spicy, but doesn’t have a heat that’ll hurt ya. It’s just zesty enough and oh-so-flavorful and filling.

Serves 6

10m prep time

20m cook time

Rated 4.5 out of 5
Rated by 48 reviewers
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 large sweet potato, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 (28 oz) can fire roasted tomatoes
  • 2 (15 oz each) cans black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 1/2 cups water or broth
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • Lime wedges, for serving
  • Fresh cilantro, for serving
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  1. In a large pot over medium heat, add olive oil. Add onion and cook until translucent, about 4 minutes. Add garlic and sweet potato and cook 2 minutes more.
  2. Stir in chili powder, cumin, paprika, and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Add tomatoes and their juices, black beans, and 1 1/2 cups water or broth. Stir to combine and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes.
  4. Season to taste with salt and pepper and stir in chopped cilantro. If a thinner texture is desired, add more water/broth. If a thicker texture is desired, mash some of the sweet potatoes with a spoon.
  5. Serve with lime wedges and additional cilantro. Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from Nora Cooks.

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