Thinking Vegan: Black Bean & Sweet Potato Chili

Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about veganism...

A good friend of mine is allergic to gluten, lactose-intolerant, sensitive to nuts, and vegetarian. Since this basically limits her to fruit, veg & legumes, she threw in the towel and became vegan. Also, she runs 15 km a day.

In January, I was reminded by a coworker how he became vegan two years ago. He lost a ton of weight and traded craving meat for craving vegetables; he feels better than ever.

This got me thinking: why is it that many of us feel the need to consume copious amounts of meat to feed our gym-going, exercise-intense bodies?

Vegetarianism, pescetarianism, and veganism have since been constantly on my mind. Although I still eat meat, I have cut down dramatically.


What’s the point of all this? Oh, yeah! Let’s get to the recipe…

While chatting with my mum about low-effort/high-yield recipes, she reminded me of this Black Bean & Sweet Potato Chili recipe. The first time my mum made it, I thought she was crazy. Chili without beef? No way! That must be five years ago now – since then I’ve come around.

Easy to make and delicious, it also happens to be vegan, which fit in perfectly with my recent musings.

I highly recommend this recipe (the original, or my adapted version below) to anyone interested in trying out a vegan recipe, or interested in incorporating a few vegetarian meals a week into their diet. It is tasty and incredibly filling!

Adapted recipe: black bean & sweet potato chili

The original recipe can be found here: Sweet Potato & Black Bean Chili for Two, Recipe.

I adapted the recipe slightly to increase the yield by 2-3x, which lasted me about one week’s worth of meals.


  • 3 teaspoons | Olive Oil
  • 1 Medium-Large | Onion, roughly diced
  • 4 Small-Medium | Sweet Potatoes, scrubbed, not peeled, diced
  • 4 Medium | Garlic Cloves, diced
  • 2 teaspoons | Cayenne
  • 1/8 teaspoon each | Salt and Pepper, or to taste
  • 4 cups | Water
  • 2 15oz cans | Black Beans
  • 1 28oz can | Diced Tomatoes
  • 1/2 Medium | Lime, juiced
  • Optional: Cilantro for garnish

Cooking Instructions

  • Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat.
  • Add onion and sweet potato and cook, stirring often, until the onion is slightly softened (about 4 minutes).
  • Add garlic, cayenne, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant (about 30 seconds).
  • Add water and bring to a simmer.
  • Cover. Reduce heat to maintain a gentle simmer and cook until the potato is tender (10 to 12 minutes).
  • Add beans, tomatoes and lime juice.
  • Increase heat to high and return to a simmer, stirring often. Reduce heat to maintain a simmer and cook until slightly reduced (about 4 minutes).
  • Cover. Simmer until the chili/stew is at your desired consistency.
  • Remove from the heat.
  • Garnish with cilantro.

Enjoy & happy cooking!

vegetarian-infographic Source:


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