Vegetarian White Chili

This recipe appears in my book The Wheat-Free Meat-Free Cookbook: 100 Gluten-Free Vegetarian Recipes. Check out the book on Amazon if you’re looking for more tasty recipes.

White Bean Chili {Gluten-Free, Vegetarian} | Wheat-Free Meat-Free

We recently made draft blockers for our windows, which necessitated buying a bunch of great northern beans. Having pounds and pounds of beans got me thinking about white chili. So I went and bought more beans (and some chiles) and got to work.

Anaheim, Serrano, Poblano

Vegetarian White Chili

  • 2 cups dried great northern beans
  • olive oil for the pot
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 1 poblano pepper, seeds removed, minced
  • 1 Anaheim pepper, seeds removed, minced
  • 1 serrano pepper, seeds removed, minced
  • 5-6 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 4 cups gluten-free vegetable broth or water
  • salt (if using water)
  1. Place the great northern beans in a large bowl or pot and cover with cool water. Soak overnight. When ready to start the chili, drain and rinse.
  2. Heat a medium to large pot over medium heat. Lightly coat the bottom of the pot with olive oil. Add the onion and cook a few minutes, until softened. Add the peppers and garlic and cook for another 3-4 minutes, until softened.
  3. Add the soaked beans, oregano, cumin, and broth or water. (If using water add a few large pinches of salt.) Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low. Cook until the beans are tender, 1 1/2-2 hours.

Serves 4-6

Despite the three chiles, this chili was pretty mild. To make it spicier you could include some of the seeds, or add extra chiles. I had originally intended to use a couple jalapeños but the grocery store had exactly none, so that’s when the serrano came in. Poblanos aren’t really much spicier than a bell pepper. The Anaheim has a little spice. The serrano is pretty spicy. (But, you know, not a bhut jolokia or anything.) Mix and match to get your desired spiciness.

White Chili

The chili can be made with unsoaked beans. Use 6 cups of water or broth and allow for 1 additional hour of cooking time.

Cannellini or navy beans could also be used.

This recipe is my entry in this month’s My Legume Love Affair, hosted at Sweet Artichoke. I’m also sharing this recipe in Slightly Indulgent Tuesday, Hearth and Soul Hop, Gluten Free Wednesdays, These Chicks Cooked,  Full Plate Thursday, and Wellness Weekends.

Looking for More Gluten-Free Vegetarian Recipes?

Take a look at my book, The Wheat-Free Meat-Free Cookbook: 100 Gluten-Free Vegetarian Recipes.

A sampling of the recipes included:
  • Breakfasts: Cinnamon Quinoa Muffins, Yeasted Waffles, Gooey Butter Cake,
  • Sides: Patatas Bravas, Pea and New Potato Salad, Braised Celery,
  • Mains: Corn Waffle Sandwiches, Enchiladas with Green Sauce, Pesto Asparagus Galette, and
  • Desserts: Blueberry Mango Crisp, Baklava Rolls, Amaretto Cake.

You can see the full recipe list on the Amazon page.


  1. Beautiful chili, Kalinda. And haha on the draft blockers saving on bean purchases. It’s pretty cold here right now, as I haven’t tended my woodstove yet this morning, so the thought of this warm, hearty chili is super appealing. ;-)


  2. Whatever the spice level, it looks delicious! I am a huge fan of white beans! Huge!

  3. Wow, that is such a great recipe. I love such hearty recipes with beans and vegetarian :)

  4. The perfect winter comfort food… !

  5. that really is a beautiful chili. Just pinned it. there’s something about the creaminess of white beans paired with the butteriness (word?) of avocado that is just calling to me :)

  6. I love that your chili is topped with avocado. It would have never occurred to me to pair the two, but it makes perfect sense.

  7. Wow, I bet this is spicy and delicious! Please link up to Foodie Friday

  8. Thanks for sharing such a great recipe on Allergy-Free Wednesdays! Be sure to check back next week for reader favorites and hostess picks.

    Be Well,

  9. Thanks for sending this white chili to MLLA!
    It looks delicious and easy to prepare!
    I really like the photo with the avocado slices!

  10. Yum, I love white chilies! I have a recipe similar on my blog, with a couple of unique ingredients. I love your technique with the dried beans, i am going to try that…save some money!! i am such a rookie with dried beans…I thought you had to soak first? Benefits or drawbacks there?

    • I go back and forth. You don’t have to soak them, but doing so cuts down on cooking time. While I haven’t done extensive testing on the subject, I have an inkling that soaked beans tend to burst more.

  11. Hi Kalinda,
    I just love your Chili, it looks delicious and we would really enjoy it! Thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday and have a great week end.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

  12. This looks wonderful! I’m hosting a weekly blog carnival specifically for soups, stocks and chowders, every Sunday! I would love you to come and post this recipe. Just stop by my blog on Sunday – the link will be up!

    I hope to see you there:)

  13. This chili looks amazing and simple to make. I need to get this on next week’s menu! YUM.

  14. This looks delicious. I like how the flavors differ from traditional chili.

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