Sweet Potato Spiced Chili

“Oh, you’re a vegan? So you only eat salads then?” Do I always eat salads? No. Do I love salads? Absolutely. But on most days I want something hearty and warm, especially in on a ‘chili’ day (ha! get it?).

I like to cook my own beans from scratch. A few years ago I found the idea very intimidating and would only buy the canned stuff. There’s nothing wrong with doing this, especially when first increasing your intake of beans and lentils or if you find you’re short on time.

The main barrier I often hear for why people don’t make their own beans is: it requires planning and you need to always know what you’re going to make for lunch/dinner the next day. This is not necessarily true...

Pro Tip: Dedicate one day a week (perhaps your day off) to making a small batch of cooked beans. Keep them in the fridge and toss them into any recipe in the following days (soups, stews, salads, bean dips). If it's on hand, it's easy to add it to anything for extra heartiness, flavour, and protein.

Remember that with beans they will take on much of the flavour of whatever spices, herbs, and condiments you add to the dish. I had leftover roasted garlic from my hummus recipe, so I used it here. You can certainly use raw garlic instead, but I like the depth of flavour the roasted garlic gives. It’s not too overpowering, even though you use it in much larger proportions. As you can see, this recipe also generously calls for a variety of spices and herbs.

What else gives this dish the perfect texture and flavour combination? Avocados! I like to consume my oils from whole food sources such as nuts, olives and avocados. This is why I don’t use much refined oils in my recipes.

Now if you’re someone who doesn’t like avocados (I used to not like them either… it’s okay – we can overcome this together) just try them again with this recipe. My key recommendation: make sure the avocados are very soft.

Sweet Potato Spiced Chili

Recipe PDF

▸ ▹ Vegan, gluten-free, soy-free, refined sugar-free, nut-free

Yield: 4 servings

Prep Time: 10 min

Cook Time: 30 min

Total Time: 40 min


1 tsp (5 mL) vegetable oil

1 medium yellow onion, roughly chopped

1 head garlic, roasted, chopped (or 3 cloves fresh garlic, finely minced)

1 red chilli pepper, finely chopped (optional, or 1 Tbsp chilli powder)

3 medium tomatoes, chopped

1 Tbsp (7 g) onion powder

1 Tbsp (7 g) garlic powder

1/2 Tbsp (4 g) ground cumin

1/2 Tbsp (2 g) oregano

1 tsp (2 g) paprika

1 tsp salt

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

1 medium sweet potato, cut into 1 cm cubes

4 cups (1 L) water

1.5 cup (250 g) cooked black beans (1/2 cup dry beans, or 1 can)

1.5 cups (250 g) cooked red kidney beans (1/2 cup dry beans, or 1 can)

3/4 cup (130 g) corn kernels, fresh or frozen

INGREDIENTS: The garnish

1 ripe avocado, chopped

1 ripe tomato, chopped

1/4 cup (15 g) chopped fresh cilantro

1 lime, cut into wedges


  1. Add the oil and onion to a large pot over medium-high heat. Sauté until lightly brown, adding splashes of water to de-glaze the pan every couple of minutes.

  2. Add the garlic and chilli pepper and sauté for another two minutes.

  3. Add the tomatoes and all the spices to the pot; stir and let cook for two minutes.

  4. Add the sweet potatoes and water, cover, and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, and cook for 10 minutes.

  5. Add the beans and corn, cover again and allow to simmer for an additional 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

  6. Add more water, if you like your soup a little thinner. Top with your choice of garnish and enjoy!

Did You Try This Recipe?

Let us know how it went! Comment below or share a picture on Instagram with the hashtag #pickuplimes

❤ Sadia

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