(Never-Ending) Sweet Potato Black Bean Chili

Thank you again for all the support that keeps coming as my family goes through this terribly rough time. I really appreciate it so much – it’s hard to even articulate.

I came up with a new recipe for Sweet Potato Black Bean chili on a whim. I wanted to make black bean chili – not sure what came over me but on Sunday evening I was craving it, so I soaked a bag of black beans overnight, and then yesterday morning, did all the prep and put it into a slow cooker. I spotted the sweet potatoes in my kitchen (which I always have on hand for a quick go-to meal) and decided to throw those into the mix and make a few changes to my original plan, and it turned out great!

Here’s what you need:

Chili Ingredients

  • 1 pound of dried black beans, soaked over night (or you can use canned – probably 2-3 cans depending on how much chili you want)
  • 2 cans of stewed tomatoes (I used Mexican style, but any kind will do)
  • 2 Sweet Potatoes
  • Green Peppers
  • Onions (I ended up using 2 instead of 3)
  • 1 tbsp Chili Powder (more or less depending on how spicy you want it)
  • Garlic (I ended up using jarred crushed garlic instead of the fresh stuff)


  • Soak Beans overnight if using dried, or all day
  • Peel and dice up the sweet potatoes


  • Cut your finger on a blade while taking out your slow cooker. OH WAIT. Don’t do that. I did and it made the rest of the process quite difficult
  • Chop up 2 onions and 2 bell peppers (or 3 babies) while one hand is bleeding
  • Add beans, sweet potatoes, onions, and peppers to a crock pot

Veggies and Beans

  • Add canned stewed tomatoes, garlic (use up to a whole head depending on how much you love garlic), chili powder, and 2 cans of water (or stock if you have it on hand)


  • Turn the slow cooker on low and cover, and go to work!

My house smelled amazing when I walked in the door, but for some reason, the beans were not fully cooked even though it went for 10.5 hours!! I think the secret is to either pre-cook the beans, or cook it on high rather than low. I still ate the chili, and the flavor was incredible.


Topped with a little shredded mozz because cheese makes everything better.

I also made some corn muffins from a box of Trader Joe’s cornbread mix.


The mix called for 1 egg, 3/4 cup of milk (I used skim), and 1/4 cup of oil (I substituted apple sauce). I also added 1 cup of corn that I browned in a dry pan…


And made muffins instead of using an 8×8 inch pan like the box suggests.


These muffins turned out AMAZING. The box called for 35-40 minutes, but they only took 22 minutes to cook (at 350º) in muffin form.


I ended up putting the chili back on low overnight (so it cooked for almost 24 hours when all was said and done) and it looked even better this morning…


And tasted even better for lunch (with 2 corn muffins!).

So from my original recipe, here are the changes I would make:

  • Use canned beans instead of dried, or cook on high instead of low for 8 hours
  • Don’t cut yourself. It makes chopping difficult.

I am so excited with all the leftovers I have of this because it is soooo comforting and filling. Chili is definitely one of my favorite comfort foods (especially with cornbread with kernels of corn in it!) even though it ended up being almost 90º yesterday in DC.

What is your favorite comfort food?

15 Comments on (Never-Ending) Sweet Potato Black Bean Chili

  1. Lisa
    October 12, 2010 at 12:43 pm (10 years ago)

    Thanks for posting the recipe! It looks fantastic. And what a great idea to make cornbread too.

  2. Amy @ Second City Randomness
    October 12, 2010 at 12:57 pm (10 years ago)

    Yea! Another believer in slow cooking chili!

    I would have never thought to put sweet potatoes in the recipe… I like it!

    And isn’t actual corn in the corn muffin the best? I don’t think I’d do it any other way now.

  3. Katie Photiadis
    October 12, 2010 at 1:19 pm (10 years ago)

    OMG, that looks absolutely AMAZING!! And I have been craving chili with cornbread as well. Would you mind sharing the points values because I think I’m going to replicate your meal on Thursday/ Friday.

  4. rc1001
    October 12, 2010 at 2:21 pm (10 years ago)

    OMG this looks and sounds AMAZING. Bet taste isn’t far behind 😉

  5. tropicaleats
    October 12, 2010 at 2:38 pm (10 years ago)

    mmm chili is one of my favorite meals!!! hope your finger is ok!

    great idea to add sweet potatoes to it mmm. My favorite comfort food is mashed potatoes and gravy

  6. Lisa @ bakebikeblog
    October 12, 2010 at 4:35 pm (10 years ago)

    oh yummo!
    My fav comfort food would have to be chili also! Or a big hearty stew!

  7. couchpotatoathlete
    October 12, 2010 at 4:46 pm (10 years ago)

    Oh man that chili looks awesome! And I love cornbread so much — this is the perfect comfort food meal.

  8. Bekki
    October 12, 2010 at 4:47 pm (10 years ago)

    Looks FANTASTIC!!!

  9. Kelsey
    October 12, 2010 at 6:31 pm (10 years ago)

    Beth you’re so rad! one of the best chilis ive seen!! i love the comforting texture that sweet potatoes add to chili!!! the coolest part is that u made corn muffins to carry the theme of the meal <3 <3

  10. greensandjeans
    October 13, 2010 at 12:22 am (10 years ago)

    Corn in cornbread is so important!

  11. lisaou11
    October 13, 2010 at 2:39 pm (10 years ago)

    im saving this one! thanks!

  12. Juli
    November 2, 2012 at 2:26 pm (8 years ago)

    Sounds great, can’t wait to try it! I’m wondering if the reason your beans were still crunchy despite the long cook time was because you cooked them with the tomatoes?I’ve heard something about the acids in the tomatoes causes them to not cook through, though I’m not sure where I heard it.

    • Beth
      November 2, 2012 at 2:32 pm (8 years ago)

      Hi Juli! I think I’ve heard something about that too, but the beans did get cooked through in this recipe! Let me know if you have any other questions. Thanks!


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