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Bowl of chipotle chili with spoon

Smoky Chipotle Black Bean & Quinoa Chili

A satisfying quinoa chili with hearty black beans and warm, smoky chipotle. Easy to make and so comforting on chilly days!
AuthorKaitlin - The Garden Grazer
Prep Time:25 mins
Cook Time:20 mins
Total Time:45 mins
CourseChili, Main Dish
CuisineGluten-Free, Oil-Free, Vegan
Servings5 medium bowls


  • 1 yellow onion
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1-2 chipotle chiles in adobo sauce*
  • 2 tsp. adobo sauce (more as desired)
  • 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 1/2 cups vegetable broth
  • 30 oz. canned black beans (two 15 oz. cans)
  • 1/2 cup white quinoa (uncooked)
  • 2 1/2 tsp. chili powder (I use mild)
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • Salt to taste

Toppings (optional):

  • Avocado, green onion, cilantro, vegan shredded cheese, vegan sour cream


  • Dice onion and mince garlic.
  • In a stockpot over medium-high heat, sauté onion for about 8 minutes. (I use 3 Tbsp. water/broth for no-oil sauté method, adding more as needed.)
  • Meanwhile, prepare the chipotle: handling the chile carefully, gently scrape the seeds away with the back of your knife to remove them. Then finely mince the chile. (When finished, avoid touching your face and wash your hands very well. I try to avoid all contact with the chile, using a fork to help maneuver it.)
  • Add minced garlic, chili powder, and cumin to the stockpot. Stir and cook 1 minute.
  • Add tomatoes, vegetable broth, minced chipotle, and 2 tsp. adobo sauce (avoiding seeds).
  • Rinse and drain black beans and quinoa. Add to pot.
  • Bring to a light boil. Then cover, lower heat to med-low, and simmer for about 20 minutes or until quinoa is cooked.
  • Salt to taste and garnish with desired toppings before serving.


*Chipotle: These are fairly spicy so start with one, or less. (I usually end up using about 1 1/2.) If you’re sensitive to spice but still want the smoky flavor, omit the chiles and use the adobo sauce only (avoiding the seeds). Or substitute the chiles and adobo sauce altogether and opt for a small amount of dry chipotle chili powder. Start with 1/8 tsp. to 1/4 tsp. and work your way up from there if desired.
Texture note: The chili thickens as it sits, as the quinoa continues to soak up more liquid.
Optional additions: Smoked paprika, bell pepper, sweet corn, jalapeno, etc.

Nutrition Per Serving (Estimate)

Calories: 299 kcal | Carbohydrates: 57 g | Protein: 16 g | Fat: 3 g | Saturated Fat: 1 g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1 g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1 g | Potassium: 1162 mg | Fiber: 17 g | Sugar: 9 g | Vitamin A: 1062 IU | Vitamin C: 22 mg | Calcium: 143 mg | Iron: 7 mg