I don’t know about your neck of the woods, but Fall is definitely potluck season around here.

Every year, not a weekend goes by in late September and October that I don’t have to cook up a dish for a crowd; I’ve got some favorite pot luck fare and this kidney bean crockpot chili recipe fits into that category.


Chili can be made with many types of beans. I usually make chili with black beans, but this time I used kidney beans (I’m blogging the letters of the alphabet this month and it’s “K” day after all). To make things simple, I like to cook chili in a crockpot- I love how you can throw all the ingredients in the crock pot in the evening and your meal is ready the next morning!

This is a vegetarian chili; you can brown 1 pound of organic grass-fed turkey or beef and add it to the recipe, if you like, but my family prefers vegetarian chili, so I don’t usually add meat.

Because I’ve been intrigued by the idea of adding chocolate to chili as of late, I added some cocoa powder as well as dark chocolate to the chili at the end; the chocolate adds a rich and somewhat mysterious flavor that I really like. If you don’t fancy the idea of chili with chocolate, just leave it out.

Recipe for Vegetarian Crockpot Chili with Chocolate


*1 onion, chopped
*3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
*3 carrots, peeled and chopped
*2 stalks celery, chopped
*2 green or red peppers (or a combination), diced
*two 15 oz. cans kidney Beans, with liquid
*two 28 oz. can whole tomatoes in juice
*1-2 tsp. paprika
*2-3 Tb. chili powder
*1-2 tsp. cumin
*1/2 tsp. dried oregano
*1 tsp. Himalayan or sea salt
*1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon- optional
*1 Tb. organic unsweetened cocoa powder- optional, mixed in before serving
*1-2 oz. 60-70% dark chocolate, grated- optional, mixed in before serving


1. Add onions, garlic, carrots, celery, green peppers, beans, tomatoes, and spices to your crockpot. Stir and break the tomatoes into smaller chunks.

2. Cook on high for an hour or two, and then reduce to lower temperature setting for 8 hours or overnight.

3. Taste and adjust seasonings, and add optional cinnamon and chocolate before serving.

4. Top with organic sour cream or creme fraiche, shredded organic raw cheddar cheese, minced green onions, minced cilantro, diced avocado, fresh salsa or your garnish or choice!


This post is linked to Miz Helen’s Texas Star Chili Cook Off!



  1. 1

    CherylK — October 11, 2009 @ 1:00 pm

    Looks just delicious. I’ve never made chili with chocolate or cinnamon but I’m going to this recipe just as it is. I have two crockpots – a big one and a small one – and I love them both!

  2. 2

    Guacamole And More Superbowl Snack Ideas | Healthy Green Kitchen — February 5, 2010 @ 1:09 pm

    […] a big Superbowl spread, guacamole is awesome with chili. You can find my chili recipes here and here. I’ve also got some more dip recipes here, and additional healthy snack ideas […]

  3. 3

    Miz Helen — October 11, 2010 @ 3:01 pm

    I am so excited that you brought your Crock Pot Vegetarian Chili with Chocolate over to the Texas Star Chili Cook Off. Your recipe looks wonderful, I can almost smell it, we are going to have so much fun!
    Thanks for coming over.

    • Winnie replied: — October 11th, 2010 @ 6:02 pm

      It was my pleasure Helen!