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Vegetarian Chili For One

This easy vegetarian chili recipe will be a favorite of both meat eaters and vegetarians alike. It's made with convenient canned beans and can be ready in under 30 minutes. Hearty, healthy, and incredibly delicious!

A red circular baking dish full of chili with beans, onions, and tomatoes, topped with two avocado slices, shredded cheese, and a dollop of sour cream, next to a small jar of sour cream, a dish of shredded cheese, and half of an avocado

I first started making this vegetarian version of my popular chili recipe several years ago. Vegetarian chili is an easily customizable recipe and a meal that comes together so quickly.

When my youngest son was in high school he decided to follow a vegetarian diet. When I realized that this was more than just a passing phase, I knew I needed to learn how to make vegetarian meals that were filled with protein and the other nutrients he needed. I didn't think this phase of his life would last long, but it's been seven years now and he still avoids eating meat.

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This vegetarian chili was one of my son's favorite meals and now that he's off and living on his own, he tells me he makes it all the time.

A circular baking dish of vegetarian chili next to a small jar of sour cream, a dish of shredded cheese, and half of an avocado

What Makes This The Best Vegetarian Chili Recipe?

This recipe calls for pantry staples only: This recipe calls for using items you probably already have in your pantry. There's no soaking of the beans overnight, we recommend using canned beans and canned tomatoes for convenience. (See below for ways to use up leftover beans)

It's completely customizable: Although we mostly use garbanzo and kidney beans in this recipe, use the type of beans you already have. Favorite beans include, black beans and white northern beans, in addition to the ones this recipe calls for.

Add your favorite vegetables: In addition to beans, feel free to add in any seasonal vegetables to your chili. Fresh zucchini, eggplant, green beans, broccoli, and spinach are all wonderful additions. Add these vegetables when you add in the tomatoes and beans and let them cook along with the other ingredients.

How To Make Vegetarian Chili

See recipe box below for ingredient amounts and full recipe instructions.


  • olive oil
  • chopped onions
  • chopped red bell peppers
  • garlic
  • salt
  • ground cumin
  • red pepper flakes
  • canned diced tomatoes
  • garbanzo beans, canned
  • kidney beans, canned

See below for ways to use leftover ingredients.


  1. Heat the olive oil a medium skillet over medium heat. Add onions, peppers, garlic, and seasonings and cook until vegetables have softened. Adding spices to the vegetables as they cook is a great way to deepen and intensify the flavor of the spices.
  2. Add tomatoes and beans, then bring mixture to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, reduce heat to low and simmer 15 minutes.
  3. Pour into a bowl and top with your favorite chili toppings.

Is This Recipe Vegan?

Yes, if you don't add sour cream or cheese to the chili it is vegan.

How To Serve Vegetarian Chili

  • I like to enjoy this with a little shredded cheddar cheese and sliced avocados.
  • My son loves it with rice, quinoa, or cooked elbow macaroni.
  • You can add a variety of toppings such as; sliced jalapeños, fresh cilantro leaves, diced avocados, shredded cheeses, and sour cream.

Ways To Use Leftover Ingredients

If you have any ingredients left over from this chili recipe, you might like to consider using them in any of these single serving recipes:

An overhead view of a circular baking dish of vegetarian chili topped with two slices of avocados, shredded cheese, and a dollop of sour cream next to a small jar of sour cream, shredded cheese, and half of an avocado

What To Serve With Vegetarian Chili

Other Single Serving Chili Recipes

For more information on the cooking and baking dishes I use in our “recipes for one”, please visit our FAQ page.

For examples of the dishes used at One Dish Kitchen, please visit our Store page.

vegetarian chili with avocado grated cheese and sour cream in a red bowl

Vegetarian Chili For One

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: American, Mexican
Keywords: vegetarian
Servings: 1 person
Calories: 353kcal
Author: Joanie Zisk


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped onions
  • 1/2 cup chopped red bell peppers
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes, including juice
  • 1/2 cup canned garbanzo beans , rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 cup canned kidney beans , rinsed and drained

Optional Toppings

  • shredded cheddar cheese
  • sour cream
  • sliced avocados
  • chopped cilantro


  • In a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat, heat oil 30 seconds. Add onions and peppers and cook, stirring occasionally, 2 minutes. Stir in garlic, salt, cumin, and red pepper flakes and cook an additional 1 minute.
  • Add canned tomatoes and beans and bring mixture to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, reduce heat to a simmer on low heat and cook 15 minutes.
  • Spoon chili into a medium-sized bowl, add toppings if desired, and enjoy hot.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 353kcal | Carbohydrates: 43g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 1740mg | Potassium: 465mg | Fiber: 10g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin C: 7mg | Calcium: 73mg | Iron: 2mg

The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

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