spicy black bean chili

Okay so pretty much everyone has a chili recipe they love, right? Dare I ask you to think outside of the box and try something different?

I developed this recipe knowing I already had a black bean chili recipe on this blog…along with a turkey chili and a white chicken chili (<—fav ever). Clearly, in my house you can never have too much. Plus, chilies freeze great and taste even better as the days go by (just be sure to count your days and not exceed five!). What I really wanted though was a black bean chili recipe where you used dry beans without having to waste time soaking them overnight first. I also wanted something spicier….something heartier…something perfect for this blast of Fall weather we are currently having.

I don’t know about you, but I like to junk up my chili with cups of cheese. And sometimes macaroni noodles…but that’s another story. After cooking a big pot, I’ll always portion out individual portions into small Tupperware containers and stick them in my freezer where they remain until I move out the next storm.

I know what you’re thinking, right? Quesadillas, deep dish pizza and chili all in the same week?

Yes, dear friends, the answer is yes.

The recipe for this spicy darlin’ is over at PBS Food today. Enjoy!

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  • Erika - The Teenage Taste
    October 7, 2011 at 4:21 am

    Ooooooooh, this looks so good! 😀

  • Molly @ RDexposed
    October 7, 2011 at 4:35 am

    I am a big advocate of freezing chili. It’s a little off putting before defrosting/reheating with the thought of essentially having a chili slushy on your hands, but then it heats up and I dive in!

  • Khushboo
    October 7, 2011 at 4:35 am

    Comfort food at its finest! I bet avocado and Greek yogurt would make awesome toppers :)!

  • amy walters, aDESIGNdock
    October 7, 2011 at 4:46 am

    Love chili. Love this recipe! Yay!

  • Deva at deva by definition
    October 7, 2011 at 5:05 am

    I love chili and soup recipes this time of year. Chili is amazingly hearty when it’s chilly late at night, and there’s a hint of frost on the air (though we haven’t had a hard frost yet this year).

  • Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat
    October 7, 2011 at 5:09 am

    Yummm I love chili! Like you, I have a couple of favourites as well. However, there’s no “spicy black bean chili” in my favourites list yet, so this just might be it!

  • Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga
    October 7, 2011 at 5:11 am

    “where you used dry beans without having to waste time soaking them overnight first.” <— Amen to that! Not having to pre-soak would be a heaven-sent gift!

    And your white chicken chili….I seriously want to make that, sans chicken. Every time you link it, I want it!

    And I also want that blue/rustic board action you have…where did you find that piece? I love it!

  • OK Chick
    October 7, 2011 at 5:20 am

    I just so happen to be looking for a good chili recipe. I’ve entered a chili cook off. I might have to use your recipe. It looks great!

  • Lauren @ What Lauren Likes
    October 7, 2011 at 5:20 am

    Yum! I lovee chili! This looks great 😀

  • Charlotte Marie
    October 7, 2011 at 5:24 am

    A couple quick questions – so when you said 5 days, did you mean that you can only eat a soup you’ve frozen within 5 days after you make it? I’ve never frozen chili but want to – but was thinking it would be good for a month or so. My other question is, what’s the best way to defrost/reheat soup you’ve frozen in plastic containers? Doesn’t seem like you would want to put the plastic straight in the microwave…thanks for any tips anyone would like to share!

    • B n B
      October 8, 2011 at 11:39 am

      I’d like to know the 5 days thing too – I thought soup could be frozen for awhile?

      As for the defrosting, your best bet is to probably take it out in advance. Or take it out and submerge the container in a bowl of cool water to thaw quicker. I haven’t had much luck with the frozen plastic either – although I have put it directly in the microwave before.

      • jenna
        October 8, 2011 at 12:28 pm

        You can leave it in the refrigerator for up to 5 days—you can freeze for months! As for the plastic containers—I defrost all soups in the fridge then heat them up again over the stove…no microwave 🙂

        • Charlotte Marie
          October 10, 2011 at 9:28 am

          Got it! Thanks so much!

  • Liz @ Tip Top Shape
    October 7, 2011 at 5:27 am

    Looks great!!!

  • Jennifer @ Jane Deere
    October 7, 2011 at 5:28 am

    Looks fantastic~! Beautiful pics too!

  • kathleen @ the daily crumb
    October 7, 2011 at 5:35 am

    yum! looks delicious. this is such a great football-watching dish… can’t wait to try it!

  • Faith @ For the Health of It
    October 7, 2011 at 5:42 am

    I’m still looking for that one perfect chili recipe – I’ve got a tempeh/kidney bean chili that’s close, but no cigar. I’ll have to give this one a try in time for the cooler weather!

  • Kristin @ eat healthy. be happy. live well
    October 7, 2011 at 5:57 am

    I love making a huge pot of chili and portioning it out for lunches for the week. I always go through it too quickly to freeze any! Can’t wait to see how you spiced yours up, I’m always looking for a little more spice 🙂

  • Anna @ Food Fitness Frolicking
    October 7, 2011 at 5:59 am

    This is amazing. I wonder if you could top it with sharp cheddar cheese instead? 🙂

  • Cait's Plate
    October 7, 2011 at 6:25 am

    Mmm – chili season is officially here and I CANNOT WAIT to make a huge batch of it!

  • Lauren @ Oatmeal after Spinning
    October 7, 2011 at 6:28 am

    The last time I put dry beans in chili without soaking them first, they were definitely still hard when the rest of the chili was done. 🙁
    Here’s a chili recipe for you: if you’re putting meat in it, do you prefer ground or chopped up (like chopped up raw chicken or beef)?

  • Hilliary@HappilyEverHealthy
    October 7, 2011 at 7:19 am

    I was sold by the title of this post! And the pictures look absolutely delicious!

  • Joelle (On A Pink Typewriter)
    October 7, 2011 at 7:59 am

    Mmm my mom wants just telling me about a chili recipe she found for me, with pumpkin.. A meal this hearty seems like an excellent way to embrace fall. 🙂

  • Angela @ PattycakesnPancakes
    October 7, 2011 at 8:24 am

    Im adding this to my weekend to do list. Thanks so much! Enjoy your weekend!

  • Julie from Burnt Carrots
    October 7, 2011 at 8:31 am

    I cannot believe its already chili season! This one looks tasty with the chipotle chiles!

  • Tara F.
    October 7, 2011 at 9:11 am

    I live in Texas and tamales are everywhere right now (namely in my freezer) this would be perfect on top!

  • Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin
    October 7, 2011 at 9:15 am

    I totally agree that one can never have too many chili recipes! I don’t have a recipe for one with black beans, so I definitely want to try this!

  • Rachael @ FreshlyMinted
    October 7, 2011 at 9:16 am

    Your last recipe with chilies in adobo changed my life, and my cooking forever (did you know they make just about everything better?!)…

    Can’t wait to try this one!

  • jenna
    October 7, 2011 at 9:53 am

    i love black bean chili! so perfect for fall!

  • Natalie
    October 7, 2011 at 10:05 am

    Ok maybe I wasn’t paying attention, but just noticed the pin it button! Gret idea 🙂 I’m slightly obsessed with interest!

  • Emmy (Wine and Butter)
    October 7, 2011 at 10:22 am

    I think Black Beans are my favourite beans of all! A few weeks ago I made a Mexican Black Bean Soup that I thought was just to die for! I dont have cheese with it but have sour cream and hot sauce and coriander and lime juice…. I have no idea why I consider sour cream to be healthier than cheese (soured milk being more digestible) but for some reason I do, so I consider my black bean soup to be like the healthiest dish of all time!
    My photos didnt come out nearly as well though… 🙂 xox

  • Heather
    October 7, 2011 at 10:33 am

    Bring on the hearty meals! Reuben Casserole is coming to my blog shortly. Prepare yourself for the Ah-mazingness 🙂

  • Adrianna from A Cozy Kitchen
    October 7, 2011 at 11:00 am

    Well this looks delicious. Black bean anything is amazing. I’m so obsessed with meatless chilis right now.

  • Jason Phelps
    October 7, 2011 at 11:26 am

    It’s gotten cool in New England and this is just right to manage the transition. As I think back it has been some time since I made chili and I always try new recipes when I do.



  • Jessica @ Jess Go Bananas
    October 7, 2011 at 11:52 am

    I always portion out the pot…keeps me from eating it like there’s no tomorrow!

  • Liz @ Southern Charm
    October 7, 2011 at 1:12 pm

    I always freeze in bulks. Not sure why I never thought to put them each in a separate container BEFORE I froze.

    On my way to check out this recipe …

  • Angela @ PattycakesnPancakes
    October 7, 2011 at 1:14 pm

    Its on the stove as i type!

  • Andrea @ Imwaytoobusy
    October 7, 2011 at 3:03 pm

    Perfect timing for this recipe. I purchased some beans on a whim not too long ago and have been meaning to put them to use. Problem solved. 🙂

  • Karen
    October 7, 2011 at 3:29 pm

    This chilli recipe looks terrific, Jenna…I much prefer black beans over pinto. Also, most chilli recipes call for dozens of ingredients so I appreciate the super-simplicity of this one!

    One culinary question: What’s the reasoning in keeping the lid slightly ajar? I’ve never cooked any veggie-bean soup/chilli/stew that way.

    Finally, HUGE congrats on the Shape Magazine Healthy Food Blog nomination!

  • Kaila @healthyhelperblog!
    October 7, 2011 at 6:39 pm

    I hot food and chili! SO this covers both! YUMMMMMM!

  • Brittany
    October 7, 2011 at 8:30 pm

    This comment really doesnt have anything to do with chilli (well maybe 🙂 ) but I just wanted to say that I think there are 3 blogs in the (food/health/life) realm that I consider to fit my personality, preference, outlook, etc…etc…and yours is one of them!!!!

    Thank you!

    P.S. I guess this comment can be about chilli because this recipe sounds amazing!

  • Mahealani @ Beauty, Brains, and Balance
    October 7, 2011 at 11:40 pm

    The color of that chili is suuuuuuper intense! The next time you make it you should try dark chocolate chips on top! Sounds crazy but it is the best combo in the world, you’ll never go back!

  • Stacy @ Stacy Eats
    October 8, 2011 at 10:10 am

    Sounds delicious! I’m going to make it today in the crock pot!

  • Katrina
    October 8, 2011 at 3:54 pm

    Mmm sounds tasty!

  • Mellie
    October 8, 2011 at 4:21 pm

    You can never have too much chili!

  • Moni'sMeals
    October 8, 2011 at 4:26 pm

    this really sounds great! Chili never gets old for me.

  • cheario
    October 9, 2011 at 6:34 am

    does this work in the slow cooker?

    • jenna
      October 9, 2011 at 8:40 am

      I’m sure it would but I haven’t tried so I’m not sure on how much time it would need!

  • Sally Anne @ PaleoRunnerGirl
    October 9, 2011 at 7:27 am

    Oooooh! Nothing on earth is better than a steaming bowl of chili on a cold evening! Love Love Love it!!!!

  • Haley @ Fit, Young, and Fabulous
    October 9, 2011 at 10:44 am

    That chili looks so warm and perfect for these past few chilly days!! YUM! (:

  • Marcia @Frugal Healthy Simple
    October 9, 2011 at 6:24 pm

    I love chili. I even have chili on the stove AT THIS VERY MOMENT. Black beans are my second favorite bean in the world (after garbanzos), and chipotle just makes me happy. But with a five year old, I have to be careful about the “spicy”. Hm. Maybe I can make him a peanut butter sandwich.

  • Jaclyn
    October 9, 2011 at 7:04 pm

    Thanks! I spent some time looking for a perfect and easy black bean chili recipe today and this one is perfect!

  • Kristen @ Popcorn on the Stove
    October 10, 2011 at 6:21 am

    This looks amazing!!! I love it and can’t wait to try it!

  • kathleen @ the daily crumb
    October 10, 2011 at 6:37 am

    explored your pbs recipes this weekend… all are so delicious!! can’t wait to try them out 🙂

  • Cat @Breakfast to Bed
    October 10, 2011 at 7:40 am

    if it weren’t like a gajillion degrees out right now, I’d make that.

  • Vasu Manimaran
    October 10, 2011 at 10:37 am


    Could I do the “simmer” step of this recipe in my slow cooker? Can’t wait to make this.


  • Sara B.
    October 10, 2011 at 5:06 pm

    Ooh, I bet those adobo peppers add some awesome flavor to this.

  • kristina@beancakes
    October 10, 2011 at 10:38 pm

    i love the sounds of this chili!! so perfect for fall 😉
    xo ~ ks

  • Amy
    October 12, 2011 at 10:07 am

    I made this over the weekend and it was delicious! But unfortunately I think soaking the beans is necessary. About half the beans were still a little crunchy. And even the ones that weren’t didn’t have that nice creaminess you get from using dry beans. I’m definitely going to make this again but I’ll either soak the beans or use canned ones.

  • Emily W.
    October 15, 2011 at 2:38 pm

    YUM!! I used 1 chopped jalapeno instead of chipotle peppers and chicken stock instead of veg.

  • Emily W.
    October 15, 2011 at 3:36 pm

    One thing I might suggest is 1-2c more liquid and an extra 30-45 minutes boiling to get the beans more tender.

  • Genie @ Healthy Living Now
    October 17, 2011 at 7:57 am

    I am a huge black bean fan! Never tried it chili style, but after seeing your recipe, I think I’ll give it a try. Thanks for sharing.

  • Burning Down the House « Emily Eats and Exercises
    October 23, 2011 at 4:42 am

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  • sd
    January 2, 2012 at 12:05 pm

    just made this today! it was absolutely delicious!!! my husband said it was the best veggie chili i’ve ever made! thanks for posting the recipe 🙂 can’t wait to try more of your recipes.

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  • Jayne
    June 27, 2021 at 2:18 pm

    This is STILL my go-to black bean chilli, 10 years on. Latest batch have soaked, cooked and are are ready for the chilli making tomorrow. Love this recipe!