Home Recipes Vegan White Bean Chili Recipe

Vegan White Bean Chili Recipe

This easy vegan white bean chili is packed with flavour and easy to make in under 45 minutes for healthy weeknight meal.

Bowl of white chili topped with sliced scallions.

Table of Contents


If you’re a chili fan, you’ll have to try this twist on the classic: vegan white bean chili.

Instead of the traditional kidney beans and bell peppers, this version features hearty potatoes and creamy white beans, infused with a subtle smoky flavor.

The best part? It’s easy to make in one pot in less than 45 minutes with minimal prep, perfect for a healthy weeknight meal the whole family will enjoy, especially with all the best chili toppings.

With simple, wholesome, plant-based ingredients like white beans, potatoes, lime, and corn, combined with a blend of spices, this dish is comfort food at its finest.

This is also a great recipe for making in advance, so you can enjoy a hearty vegetarian meal even on busy days.

If you’re looking for a regular chili recipe, you can try my Easy Vegan Chili or Vegan 3 Bean Chili. For more chili variations, this Sweet Potato Black Bean Chili and Slow Cooker Red Lentil Chili are yummy too.


All ingredients needed for making white bean chili, each labelled with text.
  • Onion: White or yellow onion are suggested but you could use red onion if that’s what you have.
  • Jalapeno: Remove the seeds otherwise the chili will be very spicy. If you’re sensitive to spice you can substitute 1/2 of a green pepper. 1 small poblano pepper or 1/2 a large poblano pepper also works as a substitute.
  • Potato: Yukon gold potatoes or any other yellow potatoes are recommended.
  • Vegetable Broth: You can use any vegetable broth or vegetable stock such as carton, homemade, boullion or cubes.
  • White Kidney Beans: White kidney beans, or cannellini beans are suggested but any white beans such as great northern beans, navy beans or lima beans would also work.
  • Corn: Frozen corn is a convenient option but you could also use fresh corn or drained and rinsed canned corn.

Please see the recipe card at the end of the post for the full ingredient list with measurements.

Variations & Additions

  • Topping Ideas: Sour cream, avocado, vegan cheddar cheese, salsa or salsa verde, lime juice and zest, black pepper, jalapeños, green onion, crushed tortilla chips.
  • Green Chili: For added flavor, you can add 1 4oz can of green chilies when you add the potatoes and broth.
  • Cream Cheese: For extra creaminess, stir in 2-3 tbsp vegan cream cheese at the end.
  • Butternut Squash: Substitute butternut squash for the potato for a variation on this recipe.
  • Quinoa: Add 1/2 cup uncooked rinsed quinoa when you add the potato. You may need a little extra broth for this version, which can be stirred in as needed.
  • Extra Veggies: Add up to 1 cup diced carrot, bell pepper and/or celery with the onion and garlic. To add greens, baby spinach or kale can be stirred in at the end.

Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1. In a large pot over medium heat, saute the onion, garlic and jalapeno in the olive oil for about 5 minutes until softened and fragrant.

Jalapeno, garlic and onion cooking in a large soup pot.

Step 2. Add all of the spices and sauté another few minutes, stirring frequently.

Jalapeno, garlic, spices and onion cooking in a large soup pot.

Step 3. Add the potatoes and vegetable broth and bring to simmer. Cook for about 10 minutes, uncovered, until the potatoes are starting

Diced potatoes cooking in broth in a large soup pot.

Step 4. Add the beans and simmer lightly for another 15 minutes until the potatoes are tender.

Soup with beans and potato cooking in a large pot on a small induction cook top.

Step 5. Use a potato masher or immersion blender and mash or pulse 3-4 times to create texture and thicken the chili.

Mashing a pot of potato and beans with a potato masher in a pot.

Step 6. Stir in the corn and fresh cilantro and remove from pot from the heat.

Adding a bowl of corn to chili cooking in a large pot.

Step 7. Finish by stirring in the fresh lime juice, lime zest and fresh cracked black pepper.

Squeezing lime into a pot of white bean chili.

Serve your chili right away with lime wedges, finely chopped green onions, avocado or any other favorite toppings you might enjoy.

Bowl of white bean and potato chili topped with sliced scallions.

Recipe FAQs

What type of white bean should I use?

White beans include white beans great northern beans, navy beans, lima beans and cannellini beans. They’re all quite similar in taste, texture and nutrition, however, this recipe is best with cannellini beans, otherwise known as white kidney beans.

Is chili a healthy meal?

This one is! Most chili recipes make a healthy meal that’s high in protein and fibre, low in fat and relatively low in calories. It really depends what toppings you add!

Can I freeze vegan white bean chili?

Yes. To freeze white bean chili, let it cool then transfer to a freezer-safe container or heavy duty freezer bag. Store in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge then reheat on the stovetop or in the microwave.

How long can I store leftovers?

You can store leftover chili in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 5 days. Reheat in a pot on the stovetop or in individual servings in the microwave.

Slow Cooker Instructions

  1. For the best flavour, sauté onions, garlic and jalapeño in oil or broth stovetop until fragrant and softened, about 5 minutes. Add all the spices and cook another 2-3 minutes.
  2. Transfer to the crock pot and add everything else except for the corn, cilantro and lime.
  3. Cook over low heat for 3-4 hours or high for 2-3 hours.
  4. Stir in the corn, cilantro and lime. Season if needed and enjoy.

Instant Pot Instructions

  1. Use the saute function to saute the onion, garlic and jalapeno in the olive oil for about 5 minutes.
  2. Add everything except for the corn, cilantro, lime and pepper.
  3. Cook on high-pressure for 8 minutes then quick release the pressure.
  4. Carefully open the lid and stir in the corn, cilantro and lime.
Spoon scooping white bean and potato chili out of a bowl.

Did you try this recipe? I’d love to hear about it! Scroll down to the comment section to leave a star rating and review.


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This vegan white bean chili is easy to make, hearty, healthy and so full of flavour, everyone will be asking for seconds. It’s great for meal prep too!

  • 2 tbsp olive oil (30 ml)
  • 1 medium onion diced (2 cups, 250 g) 
  • 1 jalapeño, seeded and minced (2 tbsp, 25 g) 
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced (1 tbsp, 10 g) 
  • 1 tsp cumin 
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika 
  • 1 tsp chili powder 
  • 1/2 tsp ground thyme 
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano 
  • 1/2 tsp red chili flakes, optional
  • 1 tsp salt 
  • 2 medium potato, peeled and diced (3 heaping cups, 525 g)
  • 4 cups vegetable broth (1000 ml) 
  • 3 x 540 mL can white kidney beans, drained and rinsed (about 7.5 cups)
  • 2 cups frozen corn (225 g) 
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro (20 g) 
  • zest and juice from 1 lime (approx. 1/8 cup lime juice and 1 tbsp zest) 
  • fresh cracked black pepper, for serving
  • finely chopped green onion, for serving

  1. Cook Onion, Garlic and Jalapeno: In a large pot over medium heat, sauté onions, garlic and jalapeño in the olive oil until translucent and fragrant, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add Spices: Add cumin, paprika, thyme, oregano and chili flakes and sauté for an additional 2-3 minutes. 
  3. Add Potato and Broth: Add the potatoes and broth and bring to a simmer. Cook for 10 minutes, uncovered, until the potatoes are fork tender.
  4. Add Beans: Add beans and continue to simmer lightly for 15-20 minutes.
  5. Mash: With a potato masher or immersion blender, pulse or mash potatoes and beans 3 or 4 times to create texture and thicken. You could also scoop 1-2 cups of the chili into a high-speed blender or food processor, blend briefly then pour back into the pot and give it a good stir to combine.
  6. Add Cilantro: Fold in corn and cilantro and turn off the heat.
  7. Add Lime: Finish chili by stirring in fresh lime juice, lime zest and fresh cracked black pepper. Serve hot with finely chopped green onions and avocado or any other toppings of choice.


Storing: Let cool then store in airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Reheat stovetop or in the microwave until heated to your preference.


  • Serving Size: 1/6th of recipe
  • Calories: 324
  • Fat: 3 g
  • Carbohydrates: 58 g
  • Protein: 17 g

Keywords: vegan white bean chili, vegan white chili, white bean chili recipe