This hearty black bean butternut squash Crock Pot Vegan Chili is the perfect meal for any night of the week. Or make a big batch and enjoy it for game day with all the toppings you love. Super flavorful with a bit of spicy heat!
I have made countless different versions of chili in my life. Being that I love the flavors of chili, I have liked nearly all of them.
But, I always tend to fall back on my Pumpkin Lentil Chili. It is the perfect balance of spicy and sweet, creamy and chunky, veggie and beany (that’s a thing, right?). It has always been my favorite…..until now!
This is a bold statement considering how much I love that pumpkin lentil goodness, but this Black Bean Butternut Squash Chili is now #1 in this house!
It is also the perfect balance of everything and the fire roasted tomatoes really take it to the next level with all that smoky tomatoey deliciousness.
Best yet is that it’s all done in the slow cooker making your life so much easier!
Ingredient notes and substitutions
Beans ~ I like black beans in this crock pot vegan chili recipe. Use canned or pre-cooked beans, not dry beans.
You could use kidney beans or pinto beans, if you prefer.
Get more recipes with black beans here.
Butternut squash ~ Butternut squash goes so well with black beans. Diced pumpkin would also work.
Be sure to peel your squash and remove the seeds before chopping.
Learn more about this hearty orange veggie and get more butternut squash recipes here.
Diced tomatoes ~ Canned diced tomatoes are so versatile. They are always on my plant based grocery list. For this recipe, I like to use the fire roasted tomatoes with green chiles.
If you can’t find those particular tomatoes, you can use regular diced tomatoes and throw in a 4 ounce can of diced green chiles, too.
Veggies ~ Diced bell pepper and a cup of corn brings texture and flavor to this hearty slow cooker chili.
Broth ~ Look for low sodium vegetable broth so you can control the amount of salt that goes into the dish.
Spices ~ I keep the spices pretty simple in this dish. Chili powder, smoked paprika, and cumin. You can add some onion powder and/or garlic powder if you like.
Toppings ~ The toppings are the best part of a chili recipe. Everyone gets to customize their own bowl.
We like diced avocado, chopped cilantro, sliced green onion, crushed tortilla chips, and a big dollop of Southwest Vegan Ranch Dressing.
Other great options to top off your vegan chili: diced raw onion, squeeze of fresh lime juice, shredded dairy-free cheese, or diced jalapeño peppers.
A side of either sweet maple cornbread or spicy jalapeño cornbread is always a great idea, too!
How to make the recipe
This is such an easy recipe.
You simply add all the ingredients, except the corn, to the slow cooker and cook on high for 4 to 6 hours.
Add the corn and cook another 5 to 10 minutes or so to heat through.
Serve with your choice of toppings.
Let the chili cool completely before storing any leftovers in an air-tight container in the fridge for 4 to 5 days.
You can also freeze this crock pot vegan chili in a freezer-safe container or zip-top plastic bag for up to 3 months. Again, make sure to cool it completely before transferring to the freezer.
Pro tips for success
~ Start with canned or pre-cooked beans. Do not use dried beans.
~ If using canned beans, drain and rinse the beans.
~ Dice the butternut squash into even bite-size chunks.
~ If you can’t find canned fire-roasted tomatoes with chiles, use a can of fired roasted tomatoes and a 4 ounce can of diced green chiles.
~ If you don’t like spicy chili, use regular diced tomatoes, not fire-roasted, and leave out the green chiles.
~ We like green bell peppers in this chili, but you can use any color of sweet bell pepper, like red, yellow or orange.
~ Customize individual bowls with the toppings of your choice!
~ The flavors get better the longer it sits. Leftovers are amazing, so make a big batch and eat it all week!
~ This Crock Pot Vegan Chili is dairy free, gluten free, nut free and oil free!
Generally the longer food cooks, the more flavorful it becomes. The ingredients have time to mingle and combine their flavors making for a robust tasting dish.
Yes, especially a crock pot vegan chili that only needs to cook until the vegetables are tender and the flavors have come together. Cooking too long can cause the beans and vegetables to break down and become mushy. Do not cook this vegan chili recipe longer than 4 to 6 hours on high or 7 to 8 hours on low.
More vegan chili recipes
- Vegan Taco Chili
- Chickpea White Chili
- Garden Vegetable No Bean Chili
- Black Bean Quinoa Chili
- Vegan Cincinnati Chili
I hope you love this recipe as much as we do! If you tried it, please use the rating system in the recipe card and leave a comment below with your feedback.
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For even more easy family recipes, be sure to check out my cookbook, The Meatless Monday Family Cookbook!
Crock Pot Vegan Chili
- 2 cups canned black beans drained and rinsed
- 2 cups peeled, seeded and cubed butternut squash
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 1 green pepper seeded and diced
- 2 cans (14.5 oz) fire roasted diced tomatoes w/ green chiles
- 2 cups low sodium vegetable stock
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 1 ½ teaspoons smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- ½ teaspoon salt or to taste
- 1 cup frozen organic corn
Topping Suggestions (optional):
- Chopped avocado
- Diced red onion
- Diced green onion
- Vegan sour cream
- Crushed tortilla chips
- Drizzle of Creamy Cumin Ranch
- Shredded dairy free cheese
- Chopped cilantro
- Place all ingredients, except the corn, into a slow cooker and cook on high for 3 to 4 hours or low for 5 to 6 hours.
- Add the corn and cook for another 10 minutes to heat through.
- Serve with the toppings of your choice.
Storage/Freezing Let the chili cool completely before storing any leftovers in an air-tight container in the fridge for 4 to 5 days. You can also freeze this crock pot vegan chili in a freezer-safe container or zip-top plastic bag for up to 3 months.
- Nutrition facts calculated without toppings.
Nutrition values are calculated using online calculators and are estimates only. Please verify using your own data.
This was so good! Definitely making again. My non-vegan husband loved it and said he didn’t miss the meat at all. Thank you for sharing this great recipe!
Jenn Sebestyen says
That’s great, Alison! So happy to hear you both loved it. Thank you for your feedback!
Absolutely delicious!! Easy and wonderfully delicious!
Jenn Sebestyen says
Thank you so much, Kathleen!
Can you freeze this AND what kind of tortilla chip did you use in the picture? It looks fun!
Jenn Sebestyen says
Yes, it will freeze great! Leave the toppings off and let the chili cool before transferring to a freezer-safe container or plastic bag. It should be good for 3 to 4 months in the freezer.
And I’m pretty sure those are Tortilla Chips from Trader Joe’s. It was several years ago, though, so I’m not sure if they still have them. I don’t remember exactly what they are called.