Keep dinner simple with this slow cooker sweet potato chili. The cooked sweet potatoes add a touch of sweetness and flavor, especially when combined with fresh chili spices. This slow cooker recipe is vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free.
Add a serving of vegan cornbread on the side for the best meal ever!
I decided to make this vegan sweet potato chili using black beans because I had a hunch that the flavors would go well together. I was right. Making it in a slow cooker to let the flavors simmer together all day was another idea that worked like a charm, too.
But before I go off sounding like the chili whisperer, there’s another reason I used a slow cooker with this recipe: time. Sweet potatoes cook up so easily (thanks to their natural sugars) and so I threw everything into the slow cooker and let it cook all day.
Why This Recipe is a Winner
- Sweet potatoes add flavor and texture throughout this chili
- Using a slow cooker means that dinner is cooking while you’re doing other things
- Adding veggie crumbles contributes delicious plant-based protein to every bite!
What You Need
You can find the full printable recipe, including ingredient quantities, below. But first, here are some explanations of ingredients and steps to help you make this recipe perfect every time.
Here are the ingredients you’ll need for this recipe:
- Aromatics — We’ll be cooking chopped onion with garlic cloves in olive oil
- Sweet potatoes — You’ll need two medium sweet potatoes
- Black Beans — I prefer black beans, but you can substitute dark or light kidney beans
- Tomatoes — You’ll need two 15-ounce cans of diced tomatoes
- Tomato Sauce
- Vegetable Broth
- Veggie Crumbles — I suggest using veggie crumbles, but you can make it with or without veggie crumbles
- Seasonings — You’ll be adding Chili seasoning or substitute homemade taco seasoning. You can also add salt and pepper based on your taste preferences.
How to Make Sweet Potato Chili
It’s so easy to make this black bean sweet potato chili because it’s all done in the crockpot. That means you won’t need additional pans to make this recipe work.
- Cook onions and garlic in a slow cooker on high for about 10 minutes.
- Add the remaining ingredients except for the veggie crumbles, and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours.
- Stir in the veggie crumbles and nutritional yeast flakes prior to serving.
Here are more detailed step-by-step instructions.
Step One: Cook Onions and Garlic
- Place the chopped onions and minced garlic in a slow cooker and drizzle with olive oil.
- Set the temperature to high and stir these ingredients so they’re coated with the oil.
- Cook for about 10 minutes, until the onions are starting to get tender.
Step Two: Add Veggies
- Turn the heat to low and stir in the chopped sweet potatoes, beans, tomatoes, tomato sauce, vegetable broth, and chili seasoning.
- Cook this for 6 to 8 hours.
Step Three: Add Veggie Crumbles
- About 30 minutes before serving, add the veggie crumbles and nutritional yeast flakes. Stir to combine.
- Salt and pepper to taste.
- Try adding some chopped red bell peppers when sautéing the onions
- Garnish individual servings with chopped cilantro
- If you like it spicy (like me), add additional heat with a teaspoon (or two) of sriracha or crushed red peppers
- You could add a cup of frozen corn kernels.
To store chili, transfer it to an airtight container and store it in the fridge for up to 5 days. You can also freeze it by storing it in freezer-safe containers where it will keep up to 1 to 2 months. To thaw it, leave the container in the fridge or overnight, or leave it out at room temperature for a few hours. Heat up individual servings in a microwave or in a saucepan on the stove.
Slow Cooker Sweet Potato Chili
- 1 medium onion , peeled and chopped
- 2 cloves garlic , minced
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 medium sweet potatoes , washed and chopped (see note)
- 30 oz canned black beans
- 30 oz canned diced tomatoes
- 8 oz tomato sauce
- 1 cups vegetable broth
- 3 tablespoons chili seasoning (see note)
- 1 cup veggie crumbles
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast flakes , optional
- salt and pepper to taste
- Place the chopped onions and minced garlic in a slow cooker and drizzle with olive oil. Stir to combine. Set temperature to high and cook for about 10 minutes. See note for stovetop instructions.
- Turn heat to low and add the chopped sweet potatoes, beans, tomatoes, tomato sauce, vegetable broth, and chili seasoning. Cook for 6 to 8 hours.
- About 30 minutes before serving, add the veggie crumbles and nutritional yeast flakes. Stir to combine. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve warm with vegan cornbread.
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The nutrition information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator and should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
This post was originally published in 2018 and was updated to include new photos, new text, and an updated recipe in 2021.