This Instant Pot Vegetarian Quinoa Chili is a comfort food classic with a healthy plant-based twist! To make things uber-easy I’ve even included slow cooker instructions too. Game on!
Lately I’ve been trading my nightly Netflix sesh in favor of curling up with a book and it’s a freaking nightmare.
Hear me out.
When zoning out to my my new favorite show of the week, I am SUPER capable of turing it off at a somewhat reasonable hour and passing out. It doesn’t keep me up at night whatsoever and I’m pretty sure it helps me clear my mind of the day and PTFO.
When I grab a book, I’m basically screwed.
I am 110% incapable about putting down a good book.
There is literally no resisting it. Each page turn becomes more essential than the last and there’s NEVER a good part to pause for another day. Never ever. I’d just as soon watch the sun rise, book in hand, than attempt to put that bad boy down.
In the event that I do manage to plop the book down (or finish reading early) I’m left with another problem: my mind won’t shut off. I’ll find myself contemplating the next curveball to thrown into the plot or obsessing over how the book ended and just how terrible this book hangover is going to be until I can find a replacement book.
When a particularly epic book hangover hits, there’s no comfort to be had until I find a worthy replacement. A replacement I, in turn, read as fast as humanly possible only to leave myself feeling empty and tragic and desperate for another rush… thus restarting the vicious cycle.
Thankfully I can find comfort in a nice piping hot bowl of chili. I’m not too proud to eat my feelings and this heathy chili is JUST what the book doctor ordered.
That was weird.
I promise I’m not usually this weird!
That might be a lie.
OH LOOK! CHILI!
Instant Pot Vegetarian Quinoa Chili
Each tasty bowl is plant-based + gluten-free and can easily be made dairy-free + vegan since you choose the toppings!
Instant Pot Vegetarian Quinoa Chili
Yield 12 servings
This Instant Pot Vegetarian Quinoa Chili is a comfort food classic with a healthy plant-based twist!
Recipe yields 12 cups of chili.
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- 2 cups canned crushed tomatoes
- 2 cups onion, diced
- 2-4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 green bell pepper, diced
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 1 cup corn (frozen or canned)
- 1 can spicy chili beans in sauce (15 oz)
- 1 cup black beans, drained and rinsed
- 3 TBSP chili powder
- 2 TBSP cumin
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp smoked paprika, plus extra to taste
- salt and pepper to taste (I used 1/2 tsp)
- 1/2 cup quinoa
- 1/2 cup dried red lentils*
TASTY TOPPING IDEAS:
- chopped red onion
- fresh pico de gallo or salsa
- sliced avocado
- fresh cilantro
- chopped green onion
- jalapeños or bell peppers
- sour cream or greek yogurt (skip if vegan)
- shredded cheddar cheese (skip if vegan)
- corn chips
* This recipe works best with red lentils as they cook fastest and require less liquid than brown/green.
- First chop your veggies and measure out the ingredients.
- Add veggie broth and crushed tomatoes followed by lentils, quinoa, chili beans (pinto beans in chili sauce), black beans, onion, garlic, peppers, corn, dried spices and mix it all up.
- Set Instant Pot (I use a 6 QT) HIGH pressure for 5 minutes and allow to come to pressure.
- Quick release (aka manually release) the pressure and wait for the pin to drop and the pot to depressurize before opening.
- Lastly, feel free to adjust seasoning (spices and salt) to taste, adding more of what you prefer to get your ideal flavor punch.
- Add all your favorite toppings and enjoy! This chili is great the day of, and even better as leftovers too. Chili is magic like that and great for meal prep for the week! You can even freeze some for later.
To ensure all the goodness in this pot has enough liquid to cook, I've adjusted the broth to 1 quart (4 cups) at the suggestion of a few kind readers! The chili will thicken more as it cools.
Love beans? For an extra chunky chili, additional black beans or pinto beans can be added after the chili is done cooking! (Just not in the beginning b/c the pot is sensitive to being too full) Simply add in your favorites and then sprinkle in a bit more of the spices, to taste, to even things out. Easy peasy!
See post below slow cooker instructions, if needed. XO
No Pressure Cooker? No Problem!
This delicious chili can absolutely be made stove-top or in your handy dandy slow cooker. Simply print the above recipe and use these handy dandy instructions below.
SLOW COOKER INSTRUCTIONS
To use a slow cooker, you’ll want to decrease the broth in this recipe from 4 cups to 2 cups. AKA just use 2 cups of broth here and you’re good to go! Add all ingredients to your slow cooker (minus your toppings) and walk away. It’s that easy! This recipe takes about 5-6 hours on high. You’ll basically want to let this one simmer away until the lentils, quinoa, and veggies are super tender.
The chili will thicken as it cools. For extra flavor you can even sauté the aromatic veggies before adding it to the slow cooker, but it’s not at all essential. As I mentioned above, adjust the thickness to your liking with extra crushed tomato or broth and season to taste based on any changes/additions. Pile on the toppings and get ready to faceplant into this ultra-comforting bowl-o-veggies!
Need stove-top instructions?
No matter which method you choose, I can’t wait for you to try this Instant Pot Vegetarian Quinoa Chili!
Though let’s be honest here…
Chili does NOT look this pretty when you dive in spoon first, amirite?
It’s a hot mess of veggies, quinoa, beans, and cheesy goodness and I’d be kidding myself if I didn’t admit I love the look of it!
So pile on the toppings, grab a spoon, and swirl that chili into the beautiful mess it was meant to be. I’m certain it tastes better this way too.
hungry for more?
- Vegetarian Lentil Tortilla Soup (Instant Pot + Slow Cooker)
- 7 Delicious things to do with Leftover Chili
- Quick and Easy Homemade Cornbread
- Fluffy Bakery-Style Cornbread Muffins
- Vegan Lentil Chili (Instant Pot + Slow Cooker)
Need a paleo or whole30 compliant chili? Try my Smoky Chipotle Turkey and Sweet Potato Chili