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+ servings
Pot of vegan pumpkin chili with two spoons.
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4.67 from 9 votes

Vegan Pumpkin Chili

The perfect balance of sweet and spicy in this hearty vegetarian chili. Full of healthy plant based protein, fiber, vitamins and minerals and ready in just about 30 minutes.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time35 mins
Course: Soups, Stews, and Chilis
Cuisine: American
Diet: Gluten Free, Vegan
Servings: 6
Calories: 327kcal



  • 2 tablespoons olive oil or grape seed oil or use vegetable broth if you want oil-free
  • 1 yellow onion diced
  • 2 green bell peppers diced
  • 2 jalapeño peppers diced (ribs and seeds removed) (leave them in if you like it spicy)
  • 2 carrots peeled and shredded or diced
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3 cups cooked lentils
  • 1 can (15 oz) pure pumpkin purée
  • 1 can (28 oz) diced tomatoes
  • 1-2 cup(s) vegetable broth or water
  • 1 ½ tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • 1 can (15 oz) red kidney beans drained and rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup optional


  • Heat oil (or vegetable broth) in pot over medium heat.
  • Add onion and sauté 5 to 6 minutes, until soft and translucent. Add the green bell peppers, jalapeño peppers, and carrots and stir to combine.
  • Add the garlic, chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika, salt and pepper. Stir well and sauté a few minutes until fragrant.
  • Add the tomato paste, cooked lentils, diced tomatoes, pumpkin, and 1 cup vegetable broth. Stir well. Increase the heat to bring to a boil, then decrease the heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer 20 minutes until thick and bubbly.
  • Taste and adjust seasonings accordingly. If you like your chili on the sweeter side, add the maple syrup and stir to combine. Add the beans and stir. Cook another 1 to 2 minutes to heat through.
  • If you like your chili soupier, add an extra cup of vegetable broth and stir to combine.
  • Serve hot with your favorite chili toppings.


~ To make this in about 30 minutes, make a big batch of lentils over the weekend, refrigerate the 3 cups you need for this recipe and freeze the rest.  That way you’ll have lentils ready to go whenever the mood strikes.
~ Or use precooked packaged or canned lentils.
~ If you use canned lentils, be sure to drain and rinse them before adding them to the recipe.
~ Chop up all the veggies (green peppers, jalapeños, onions, garlic) in advance and store them in an airtight container together in the fridge.  The flavors will be melded even before you begin to cook.
~ Take out the ribs and seeds of the jalapeños for a more mild flavor. Leave them in if you like spicy heat.
~ Use 100% pure pumpkin, not pumpkin pie filling!
~ Add extra veggie broth if you like a soupier chili.
~ Taste and adjust seasonings to your liking.

Store leftovers in an air-tight container in the fridge fro 4 to 5 days.
You can also freeze this Vegan Pumpkin Chili. Cool the chili completely before transferring to a freezer safe container or plastic bag. It should keep well for up to 3 months.

*Nutrition facts calculated including the optional maple syrup and extra vegetable broth. 


Serving: 6Servings | Calories: 327kcal | Carbohydrates: 54g | Protein: 17g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Sodium: 411mg | Fiber: 22g | Sugar: 17g