Sweet Potato-Black Bean Chili with Goat Cheese

Not-too-spicy vegetarian chili

Not-too-spicy vegetarian chili

We usually have at least one vegetarian sharing Thanksgiving with us, so I like to have a an interesting meatless main dish on the table along with some traditional side dishes – that way no one feels like they’re missing anything.
And personally, while I like trying a new turkey preparation every year – whether it’s brining, stuffing or not stuffing, oven-roasting or grilling, my enthusiasm for the bird wanes when it lands on the table. I’d much rather fill up on the colorful array of vegetables instead.
Plus, everyone knows that all Thanksgiving fixings taste better the next day, so having a pot of chili on hand is a good thing, vegetarian or not. There’s nothing wrong with some tasty chili in bowl, with a gravy-drenched turkey leg on top.

Sweet Potato-Black Bean Chili with Goat Cheese

Serving Size: serves 4 - 6


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium red onion, sliced
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 3 crushed garlic cloves
  • 1 teaspoon each ground cumin, coriander, smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon each ground black pepper and ground chipotle
  • 4 cups peeled and diced sweet potato (about 2 large)
  • Vegetable stock or water
  • 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 (14-ounce) can black beans
  • 1 (14-0unce) can pinto beans
  • 1/4 cup crumbled goat cheese
  • Warm tortillas


  1. Heat the oil in a large (6-quart) pan or stockpot. Add the onion and cook until softened and just beginning to brown; stir in the salt and garlic and cook about 1 minute or until the garlic smells good.
  2. Sprinkle in the spices and ground black and chipotle pepper, stirring to dissolve in the oil. Add the sweet potatoes and pour over enough stock or water just to cover them. Cover the pot and cook over medium heat until tender (not mushy), about 20 minutes.
  3. Add the mustard, maple syrup and beans (including their liquid) to the pot. Bring to a simmer and cook uncovered another 10 minutes or so to blend the flavors. If you like your chili more soupy, add more stock.
  4. Serve in bowls topped with some cheese with warm tortillas alongside.


  1. So who’s it going to be this year? We decided to do an all vegetarian meal, but I might break down and make something with shrimp (shrimp/sweet potato hash…).

  2. Love your blog!! I just discovered it. Need to get the kids to school, I can’t wait to read more later. This chili recipe looks awesome! We could write a cookbook together as we have a lot of similar ideas about clean, healthy foods 🙂

  3. Ohhhh I wish there was more of this, mom!!!!!!!!1
    Great picture too:) Except when I was looking at it an ad popped up right on top.
    love you 🙂

  4. This recipe sounds really delicious. I’m drooling just by looking at this photo.

  5. This sounds so unusual it must be good! Can’t wait to give it a try.

  6. So many wonderful ingredients! Nothing like a hot cup of chili on a cold rainy day. Your recipe is so creative. I’ll be trying it on my family this week.

  7. I absolutely love the combination of sweet potatoes and black beans. I definitely want to make this soon. A question, though, what kind of goat cheese? I was reading about goat cheeses and I guess there is a great variety with a big difference between flavors, textures, etc. What kind did you use?

  8. Cindi Swingen says:

    I had this at a staff potluck last week and it was fabulous. I’m making it for my family on Christmas Eve. Scott pointed me in the right direction for the recipe. Thank you for your great web site!


  1. […] sweet potato fries I’d been making with them, and needed something different. I ran across this recipe, for which I only needed to purchase goat cheese. It reminded me a bid of the flavor combination of […]

  2. […] sweet potato fries I’d been making with them, and needed something different. I ran across this recipe, for which I only needed to purchase goat cheese. It reminded me a bit of the flavor combination of […]

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