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Best Sweet Potato Chili with Black Beans

There’s nothing quite like thick, hearty, robust chili when the weather turns cool. And sweet potato chili is one of the best varieties you can make.

It’s nourishing, comforting, and wholesome and perfectly balances flavor, warmth, and spice. It’s a filling, aromatic chili the whole family will love.

Homemade Sweet Potato Chili with Ground Beef, Beans and Corn in a Bowl
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It’s also surprisingly nutritious, thanks to all the vegetables you sneak in.

So, if the days are getting shorter and the wind’s getting cooler, try sweet potato chili. You won’t be disappointed.

Sweet Potato Chili

Packed with ground beef, black beans, veggies, corn, and tempting seasonings, this recipe is so irresistible.

Aside from how delicious it is, this chili is so easy to put together. The slow cooker does most of the heavy lifting!

It’s a delicious, robust chili with very little hands-on work from you.

Sweet Potato Chili Ingredients: Veggies, Tomato Sauce, Seasonings and Ground Beef

Ingredients

Here’s what you need:

  • Veggies – This chili is veggie-heavy, and that’s a good thing! You add sweet potatoes, of course. But you also use diced stewed tomatoes, sweet onion, celery, black beans, and corn.
  • Tomato sauce – Tomato sauce makes up the bulk of the chili’s broth. Use a brand you enjoy.
  • Water – Water helps thin the tomato sauce and stewed tomatoes to make a nice broth for the chili. Some people use chicken broth for more flavor.
  • Seasonings – As for the seasonings, there are quite a few of those, too. The recipe calls for chili powder, ground cumin, cinnamon, salt, black pepper, cayenne, garlic powder, and onion powder.
  • Ground beef – Use extra-lean ground beef (about 90%) for flavorful meat that isn’t too greasy.

How to Make Sweet Potato Chili

Follow these steps to make yummy sweet potato chili:

1. Place most of the ingredients in a slow cooker. Add everything except the ground beef, beans, and corn to the slow cooker. Then, cook it on high for about 5 hours, stirring occasionally.

2. Cook the meat. Brown the ground beef in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Break the meat apart and crumble it while you cook it. It’ll take 10 to 15 minutes to brown fully. Drain it.

3. Add the remaining ingredients to the slow cooker. Finally, add the meat, black beans, and corn to the slow cooker. Cook it for another 1 to 2 hours until the flavors have set.

4. Serve. Ladle the chili into serving bowls, and add your desired toppings. Serve it warm, and enjoy!

A bowl of sweet potato chili, garnished with fresh herbs, served hot and ready to be savored

Tips for the Best Chili

Here are a few of my best chili-making tips and variations:

  • Try a time-saver. You can often find pre-cut onions, celery, etc., in your local produce section. They usually cost a little more but save a ton of time. Plus, you won’t get the dreaded onion hands!
  • Make it vegan. Since there’s no dairy in this recipe, making it vegan is simple. Just leave out the meat! You can use Gardein or your favorite vegan meat substitute for extra protein. You can also add other veggies.
  • Swap out the beans. If you don’t like black beans, leave them out or swap them for pinto, kidney, or navy beans.
  • Dice the sweet potatoes evenly. The closer in size all the pieces are, the more evenly they’ll cook.
  • Add some heat. Make it spicy by upping the amount of cayenne you add. You can also use red pepper flakes or chopped jalapenos.

You can also cook this chili on the stove! I prefer making it in a slow cooker, so I don’t have to worry about it. But you can cook it on the stove if you need it a bit faster. Here’s how:

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  1. Saute the onions and garlic, then stir in the sweet potatoes. Cook them for about 8 minutes, then add the ground beef.
  2. Push the veggies to the side. Brown the ground beef over medium-high heat until all the pink is gone.
  3. Finally, add everything else. Bring the mixture to a boil. Once it’s boiling, reduce the heat and simmer for 35 to 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Once it’s ready, remove it from the heat. Season it with salt and pepper, if desired. Add your toppings, and enjoy!

Toppings

Chili is delicious by itself. But it tastes even better with the right toppings. Jazz it up with these ideas:

  • Sour cream
  • Shredded cheese
  • Salsa, corn salsa, or pico de gallo
  • Diced chives or scallions
  • Cilantro
  • Diced jalapenos
  • Crackers or corn chips
  • Avocado
  • Pepitas

Serve some lime wedges on the side to brighten the chili’s flavor.

Homemade Sweet Potato Chili with Vegetables, Herbs and Tomato Sauce

What to Serve With Chili

I love nothing more with chili than an ooey-gooey grilled cheese sandwich. A good, old-fashioned pimento cheese sandwich is another excellent option.

You can also serve chili with salads or cornbread. Or, pour it over a buttery corn casserole. Of course, you can always keep things simple and crumble some crackers into your chili.

Try these Alabama fire crackers or ranch oyster crackers for extra flavor.

Storing, Freezing, and Reheating

Sweet potato chili tastes best on the second day because all the flavors have had time to meld. For that reason, it’s a great make-ahead meal.

To Make Ahead: Make it up to 24 hours in advance and store it in an air-tight container in the fridge. Reheat it on the stove over medium heat.

To Store: Store leftover chili the same way. It’ll keep for up to 5 days in the fridge, and you can reheat it on the stove. (You can also use the microwave on high power.)

To Freeze: Freeze it in freezer-safe bags for up to 3 months to extend its life. Let it thaw in the fridge overnight and reheat it over medium heat on the stove when you want to serve it.

Best Sweet Potato Chili with Black Beans

Servings

8

servings
Prep time

30

minutes
Cooking time

6

hours
Calories

250

kcal

This sweet potato chili is packed with so much goodness! It’s made with potatoes, black beans, ground beef, veggies, and delicious seasonings.

Ingredients

  • 2 sweet potatoes, diced

  • 2 (14.5-ounce) cans diced stewed tomatoes with chili seasonings

  • 1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce

  • 3/4 cup diced sweet onion

  • 1/2 cup chopped celery

  • 1/2 cup water

  • 1 tablespoon chili powder

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1 pinch salt

  • 1 pinch ground black pepper

  • 1 pinch cayenne pepper

  • 1 pinch garlic powder

  • 1 pinch onion powder

  • 1 pound ground beef

  • 1 (12-ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed

  • 1 cup corn

Instructions

  • Put all ingredients, EXCEPT the beef, black beans, and corn, into a slow cooker. Cook it on high for 5 hours. Stir occasionally.
  • Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the ground beef for 10 to 15 minutes or until it’s evenly browned with no trace of pink. Break apart and crumble it as it cooks. Drain and discard the excess grease and fat.
  • Add the cooked ground beef, black beans, and corn to the other ingredients in the slow cooker. Cook it for another 1 to 2 hours or until the flavors have blended.
  • Serve it warm with any desired garnishes, and enjoy!
Sweet Potato Chili

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author avatar
Kim - InsanelyGood
Hey there! I'm Kim. I love running, cooking, and curling up with a good book! I share recipes for people who LOVE good food, but want to keep things simple :)

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