Instant Pot Vegetarian Chili is an easy weeknight meal packed with fiber from lentils and beans, as well as delicious veggies like carrots and sweet potatoes.
Packed with lentils, veggies, and beans, you guys are going to absolutely love this Instant Pot Vegetarian Chili. We’re big fans of both chili recipes and healthy Instant Pot recipes here at Fit Foodie Finds. Combine to two and you get one epic meal.
Seriously the BEST Instant Pot Vegetarian Chili
This Instant Pot vegetarian chili is amazing for so many reasons. Beyond the fact that it’s made with whole ingredients, tons of veggies, and lentils, it only has a 7-minute cook time in your Instant Pot (or pressure cooker)!
Not only is this chili vegetarian, but it’s also vegan, making it 100% plant-based. That means, this recipe is dairy-free and meat-free. We love the savory taste of this vegan chili and know you will too.
Why you’ll love it!
- high-protein (14g!)
- high-fiber (15g!)
- Packed with vitamins and minerals
Instant Pot Chili
Whip up a batch of this delicious Instant Pot Chili in no time! This Instant Pot Chili recipe is made with ground beef, beans, tomato products, and homemade chili seasoning.
How to Make Instant Pot Vegetarian Chili
Step 1: Prep Veggies & Soak Lentils
If you’ve ever cooked with dried lentils, you know how long they take to soak and cook. Sometimes it feels like forever. Well, not with the Instant Pot!
Soaking your lentils in one cup of your broth while chopping and preparing the other ingredients is all the soaking these dried lentils need before dropping the rest of your ingredients into the Instant Pot together.
Next, prep your veggies. The key here is to get the sweet potatoes and carrots around the same size/thickness so that they cook evenly. Rinse and drain the beans and mix together your chili seasonings.
Chili Spices you need:
If you have our homemade chili seasoning on hand, feel free to use around 1/4 cup of that. If you want to make the blend in this recipe, here’s what you need:
- Chili powder
- Ground cumin
The most important tip we have when it comes to cooking chili is to use a homemade chili seasoning no matter what. The flavor is so much better than store-bought packets (speaking from experience).
Quick Tip: Preheat your Instant Pot Using the Sauté Feature
In many of our other Instant Pot recipes, we simply have you place all of the ingredients into your Instant Pot and then turn it on. This typically leads to an extra 30-minutes of pressure building.
In this recipe, however, we’re sharing a tip to save some time! If you turn on the saute feature while you prep the other ingredients, you actually preheat your Instant Pot and help decrease the pressure building time by almost half!
Step 2: Mix & Cook
After your veggies have been sliced and diced and your lentils have soaked for a bit, simply place all of the ingredients into the Instant Pot and mix. That’s right, nothing needs to be sauteed or precooked, just plop that all right in your IP!
The most important thing to remember about this step is to make sure that all your ingredients are mixed well.
Next, close your Instant Pot > seal the valve > turn it to manual > high pressure > and turn the timer to 7 minutes.
Pressure build: it will take around 15 minutes for the pressure to build in your Instant Pot. However, know that you are saving time by preheating your IP with the saute feature! Once enough pressure has built, it will start counting down from 7 minutes.
Step 3: Quick Release & Serve
Quick-release your Instant Pot and then make sure to give the chili a good stir. Remember, as it sits (especially in your fridge), it will thicken! So, if you have extra moisture now, you won’t later!
Now it’s time to top and serve! Here are some ideas for you.
- Sliced avocado
- Greek yogurt or sour cream
- Lime juice
- Tortilla chips
- Cheese (Vegan cheese, if you prefer)
- Greek yogurt
We recommend storing your chili in the refrigerator. We love using glass meal-prep containers for an easy grab-and-go during the week.
How long does chili last in the fridge? Chili will last up to 5 days.
Can I freeze Vegetarian Chili?
Vegetarian chili is an excellent meal to freeze. Let the chili cool completely, before transferring it into a freezer-safe gallon-size bag or container. Remove as much air as possible and then seal. Freeze for up to 3 months.
To thaw: let sit in the refrigerator overnight and then dump contents of the container into a large stockpot. Heat over medium/high heat until simmering.
How to Freeze Soup & Chili
Learn how to freeze soup and chili with this easy How to Freeze Soup tutorial. We’ll share all of our tips and tricks to perfect freezer soup.
Instant Pot Vegetarian Chili
- 3 cups vegetable broth option to use low sodium
- 1 cup red lentils uncooked
- 28 oz. can tomato puree or tomato sauce
- 28 oz. can diced tomatoes
- 15 oz. can black beans drained and rinsed
- 15 oz. can kidney beans drained and rinsed
- 15 oz. can pinto beans drained and rinsed
- 1/2 medium white onion finely diced
- 3 large carrots chopped into rounds
- 1 large sweet potato peeled and chopped
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1/4 cup chili powder
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- First, place lentils and 1 cup of broth into a bowl and let soak while preparing other ingredients.
- Warm up Instant Pot by turning on the saute feature. This will help build pressure faster.
- Next, prepare the rest of chili ingredients by draining and rinsing beans and chopping vegetables.
- Turn off the saute feature and then place all ingredients into the Instant Pot including the lentils and the broth they're soaking in (and the rest of the broth). Mix well.
- Close Instant Pot and turn the pressure valve to seal. Set Instant Pot to > manual > high pressure > and set time to 7 minutes. The Instant Pot will take around 15 minutes to build pressure before it begins to countdown from 8 minutes.
- When the timer goes off, quick release the Instant Pot by manually opening the valve. Once the steam stops, remove the lid, and give her a good mix.
- Serve immediately with your favorite toppings!
Tips & Notes
- Chili seasoning: option to sub around 1/4 cup of our chili seasoning instead of the other spices.
We love this recipe. We make it every few weeks through out winter and even freeze it to share. The only thing I do different is add frozen fire roasted corn. Absolute favorite.
Me encanta el chili desde que me fui de vacaciones de verano a Colombia. Ahora que aprendí como cultivarlos gracias a https://www.germillero.com/ puedo hacer recetas como estas muy a menudo. Se lo recomiendo a mis mejores amigas y familiares.
I will never make another chili recipe again. I ran a retreat and most of my clients were vegan. I gave this a shot and everyone raved…enough that I now make this recipe for my family and won’t ever make another 😂 I’ve added in ground beef or chicken or made as is. It’s perfect.
YAY! So glad you guys loved this!
Loved this chili! I’m plant based and trying to get my family on board though it’s been difficult. My husband tried this before me and gave a big thumbs up which really surprised me since I didn’t add salt. I rinsed my beans that had salt and I think both cans of tomatoes had salt so thankfully, that was enough for him. I’ll have to add this to my go-to recipes! Because I was short on time, I used pre-shredded carrots which were OK but I don’t suggest it. Thanks for the recipe!
Glad you guys enjoyed it!
This chili was soooo good! The flavours and spices were just right, and I loved the combination of the lentils and beans. Definitely try that all Instant Pots are different – I had to cook mine for about twice the recommended time in order to get the carrots cooked through – next time, I would slice them a bit thinner than I did and cook for a longer amount of time. Delicious!
I got a burn notice so I left it on saute to keep it cooking.
This chili is awesome – so easy to make, great flavors, super hearty. My husband actually thought there was meat in it.
This was soo yummy! My Trader Joe’s didn’t have lentils in stock so swapped out for red lentil pasta. Also this is really good with TJ’s Avocado Cucumber Tzatziki dip!
1/4 cup chili powder? That seems like a lot?
I thought the same but I used it and thought it was delicious! It doesn’t make it spicy hot, just spicy tasty….if that’s a thing. LOL
Awesome vegan instant pot chili recipe. it’s looks delicious.
No instant pot no problem. Made this in my crockpot on high for 4 hours. So yummy on a coldnight.
YAY! Thanks for sharing your method in the slow cooker!
I just made this recipe and it was absolutely delicious! I made two small modifications. I used only 2 tsps rather than 1 tbsp of cumin because I don’t like cumin all that much. And I put in 2 tsps rather than 1 tbsp of maple syrup because I really didn’t want it to end up being sweet or having a maple flavor. Other than that, I followed the recipe to the letter and it came out really well. I have a 6 qt Instant Pot and it did fill it right up to the fill line, but not over. Thanks very much!
Yay! Glad you loved this and I appreciate you letting us know about your modifications
The burning feature came on when I attempted this recipe – maybe I did not have enough liquid in there although I used the right amount! However, it still cooked fine. delish!
Hi Eileen! That is so bizarre. There is for sure enough liquid in this recipe. Glad you figured it out!
Is there a modification to use dried beans instead of canned?
Hey Ali! We haven’t tried dried beans with this recipe. You can try to cook them in the IP beforehand and then use as prescribed in the recipe!
I’m making this recipe in the 6 quart IP and it seems a bit full (it’s at the fill line), but in your pictures it doesn’t seem like yours is even close to the fill line. Am I missing something? Is it safe to cook it this full?
Ours definitely wasn’t at the fill line! Did you rinse and strain your beans?
hi, what kind of lentils did you use?
Any kind of uncooked lentils will work for this!
This was my first IP meal and I loved it! One question – did you use onions? In one of the pictures, it looks like you did but didn’t see it in the ingredients list. Thanks!
Hello! Yes we did. Thanks for catching that. 1/2 a yellow or white onion, finely diced. Just updated the recipe!
love to try it. do you think the 6 qt IP would accomodate doubling this recipe? thanks !!
Yes! That’s the one we use!
Hmmm that might be pushing it! I’m not sure!
Any way to make this in a crockpot or stove top??? No instapot…
Loved how this turned out! I’ve been searching for an IP vegan chili recipe and this was perfect. I love it so much that I’m entering it into a chili cook off at my office this week! 🙂
Ahh we’re honored you’re using it in your chili cook off!! And so glad you love the recipe 😀