Vegetarian Black Bean Chili

Vegetarian Black Bean Chili

Prep Time


Cook Time



Vegetarian Black Bean Chili

Dried beans are a favorite pantry staple in winter, and nearly any variety will work well in this recipe; some alternatives to black beans include navy beans, cannellini beans or red beans. If you like, garnish with sour cream and chopped fresh cilantro.

Recipe courtesy of


  • 2 1/4 cups dried black beans
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 yellow onions, chopped
  • 2 fresh serrano or jalapeño chili peppers, seeded and minced
  • 5 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 6 tablespoons chili powder
  • 3 tablespoons ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 cans (28 ounces each) crushed tomatoes
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1 cup coarsely grated Monterey jack cheese


  • 1 Pick over the beans and discard any damaged beans and stones. Rinse the beans. Place in a bowl and add water to cover generously. Let stand for about 3 hours. Drain the beans and set aside.
  • 2 In a large, heavy saucepan over low heat, warm the olive oil. Add the onions and chili peppers and sauté, stirring occasionally, until the onions are soft, about 10 minutes.
  • 3 Add the garlic, chili powder, cumin, cayenne and oregano and sauté, stirring, for 2 minutes more.
  • 4 Add the beans, tomatoes and water to cover by 3 inches. Bring to a boil over high heat.
  • 5 Reduce the heat to low and simmer, uncovered, until the beans are very tender and have begun to fall apart, 2 1/2 to 3 hours. Add water if the beans begin to dry out but are not yet cooked.
  • 6 Season with salt and pepper. Ladle into warmed bowls, sprinkle with the cheese and serve immediately.


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