5 from 6 votes
Smoky Black Bean Chili Recipe
Smoky Black Bean Chili Recipe
Prep Time
20 mins
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 20 mins

Smoky and sweet, satisfying and delicious, this Smoky Black Bean Chili makes a great weeknight dinner. It can also be made in the slow cooker. It freezes well.

Course: Main Course, Soups
Cuisine: American
Servings: 6
Calories: 370 kcal
Author: Aliye Aydin
  • 1 cup dried black beans*
  • 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil or unsalted butter
  • 1 pound ground beef, turkey, or chicken (optional)**
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt, divided
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 1 large bell pepper, red or green, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or to taste)
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 15-oz. can diced tomatoes with chilies
  • 1 cup frozen corn (optional)
  • cilantro, as topping
  • scallions, as topping
  • shredded cheese, as topping
  • sour cream, as topping
  1. Soak black beans overnight, covered with water. Drain.

  2. If using ground beef, heat a soup pot over medium-high heat, and add olive oil when hot. Add ground beef, and cook, stirring occasionally. Add 1/4 teaspoon salt.

  3. Once beef is no longer pink, turn down heat to medium and add onion, bell pepper, garlic, spices, and another 1/4 teaspoon salt. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. 

  4. Add soaked and drained black beans, water, and another 1/2 teaspoons salt. Stir to combine. Bring to a boil, turn heat to a simmer, and cover. Cook for 50-60 minutes, until black beans are soft. If chili starts to stick, add a little bit more water.

  5. When beans are soft, add tomatoes and corn, if using, and simmer for another 10 minutes. Taste and adjust salt. Serve and garnish with your favorite toppings. 

Recipe Notes

*Canned black beans may be used in place of dry, use 2 15-oz. cans.

**If not using meat, substitute 1-2 cups frozen or fresh corn, or more beans.