Butternut Squash & Black Bean Chili

It’s likely we all have a favorite chili recipe that is our go-to on weeknights, weekends and for game day. But once in awhile it’s fun to change things up and put a unique spin on a classic recipe. Enter: Butternut Squash & Black Bean Chili.

Butternut squash is everywhere this time of year, and chili is one way to feature it. It’s a good source of vitamin A, fiber and potassium, and is versatile in the kitchen. In this chili, squash is simmered with black beans, chipotle chilies, fire-roasted tomatoes, bell pepper, onion, garlic, lime juice and loads of spices. It’s a hearty plant-based meal that I’m certain you’ll love.

Here are a few other delicious ways to enjoy squash this season:

  • Roasted with oil, herbs and spices
  • Pureed into a creamy soup with coconut milk
  • Cubed and sauteed with greens and topped with an over-easy eggs
  • Cooked into a savory risotto
  • Spiraled into noodles and sauteed with garlic, greens and Parmesan cheese
  • Cut hasselback style, rubbed with oil and roasted
  • Mashed and drizzled with olive oil and honey

Now tell me… how do you prepare butternut squash?

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Butternut Squash & Black Bean Chili

  • Author: Julie Andrews
  • Prep Time: 15-20 mins
  • Cook Time: 25-30 mins
  • Total Time: 40-50 mins
  • Yield: Serves 8 1x
  • Category: Soup/Chili
  • Method: Stove-Top


A smoky vegetarian chili with butternut squash and black beans.


  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, peeled and diced
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 34 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 2 Tbsp. chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp. ground cumin
  • 2 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 1 ¼ tsp. kosher or sea salt
  • ½ tsp. ground black pepper
  • 1 chipotle chili in adobo sauce, chopped
  • 1 small butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cubed (about 4 cups)
  • 2 15-oz. cans no salt added black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 15-oz. can no salt added fire-roasted diced tomatoes
  • 3 cups unsalted vegetable stock
  • Zest and juice of 1 medium lime
  • 2 medium avocados, peeled, pitted and diced


  1. Heat the olive oil to medium in a Dutch oven or large stock pot. Add the onion and red bell pepper and cook 3-4 minutes, until slightly soft. Stir in the garlic, chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika, salt, black pepper and chipotle chili and sauté 30-60 seconds, until garlic and spices are fragrant.
  2. Stir in the butternut squash, black beans, tomatoes and stock. Increase heat to medium-high and bring to a simmer. Reduce to medium-low and cook 15-20 minutes or until squash is soft. Stir in lime zest and juice. Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary.
  3. Spoon chili into bowls and top with diced avocado. Serve.


Cooking Tip: Adding a splash of citrus juice or vinegar at the end of a recipe can help provide a salty taste without adding excessive salt.

Serving Tip: This is a complete meal!


  • Serving Size: 1/8 of recipe
  • Calories: 290
  • Sugar: 8g
  • Sodium: 480mg
  • Fat: 11g
  • Saturated Fat: 1g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 10g
  • Trans Fat: 0g
  • Carbohydrates: 42g
  • Fiber: 15g
  • Protein: 10g
  • Cholesterol: 0mg

Keywords: chili, soup, butternut squash, squash, black beans, beans, plant-based, vegetarian, vegan


  1. keith Mangene on November 11, 2019 at 9:12 am

    hey Julie can you send me a email when free would love to collaborate


    • Julie Andrews on November 12, 2019 at 4:08 pm

      Done! 🙂

  2. Mary on November 13, 2019 at 11:09 am

    Great recipe – I was worried the butternut squash would be too sweet, but the spice and smokiness from the Chipotle peppers made this perfectly balanced!

    • Julie Andrews on November 13, 2019 at 3:26 pm

      I couldn’t agree more, Mary! The mix of savory, sweet and smoky is dynamite! I’m really glad you liked it!

  3. Katherine Hanson on December 27, 2019 at 11:10 am

    I made this last night for dinner – so good! It has just enough heat between the spices and the fire-roasted tomatoes. I made vegan corn bread to go with it (from Dr. Neal Barnard’s cookbook) – absolutely perfect!

    • Julie Andrews on December 27, 2019 at 3:01 pm

      That sounds like a heavenly meal! I’m so glad you liked it, Katherine!

  4. Moka on January 8, 2020 at 8:44 am

    This is so good! My fave was the butternut squash, I might add a little more next time. Thanks for sharing!

    • Julie Andrews on January 8, 2020 at 9:58 am

      So happy you enjoed it, Moka! It really has a ton of delicious flavor!!

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