Fall Harvest Vegetarian Chili with Kale

Vegetarian chili with butternut squash, sweet potato, and black beans. A delicious meal for celebrating fall!

Fall Harvest Vegetarian Chili with Butternut Squash, Sweet Potato, Apples, and Soy Beans #SoyInspired #sponsored #ad

It’s been chilly lately!…

Somewhere in the Unites States…

Not here. Not yet.

Seriously, I’ve been trail running in a tank top over the last week, and I’ve got a tan to show for it. A TAN, people!

BUT in spite of our unseasonably warm weather here in the western part of the U.S., it’s still harvest season. And it’s still chili season. Because every season’s chili season as far as I’m concerned.

So…I harvested some chili for you’uns!

Okay, that was a lie. I didn’t harvest anything. There’s no such thing as a Bowl of Chili plant that’s just free for the harvesting (or else I’d harvest that thing to.the.ground, because chili’s what dreams are made of). Don’t let the Bowl of Chili plant thing be a day wrecker. In other good news, I bombarded a stockpot with harvested-by-others fall produce items, and created a belly-warmer pot o’ golden deliciousness.

And the ingredients? Not exactly your run-of-the-mill chili ingredients. You’re just gonna have to take a flying leap of faith and trust me for this carpet ride, Jasmine, because this flavor combo will make you sing A Whole New World (and/or some sort of Sarah Brightman song). In vibrato, my friends. In.vibrato.

Fall Harvest Vegetarian Chili with Butternut Squash, Sweet Potato, Apples, and Soy Beans #SoyInspired #sponsored #ad

You guys, I’ve made a discovery that I deem to be very pertinent and crucial to your life. Ready for it?

Apples in your chili. For real. Add a legit apple to your chili foods…it will make your taste buds swoon slash sing. In vibrato.

Also pertinent and crucial to your life: butternut squash, sweet potatoes, kale, and soybeans. In.your.chili, in your face. For the love of Jiminy Cricket, this freshly harvested chili will dishevel your gizzard like a flock of wild wombats.


While this recipe is vegetarian, you can absolutely add your choice of animal protein to it. I’ve tried this exact recipe using chicken broth (instead of vegetable broth) and ground bison, and it turned out marvelously. You can also use ground turkey or beef, shredded chicken, or tofu. Protein-ize to your heart’s delight! Additionally, you can add a can of diced tomatoes if that’s your jam!

Fall Harvest Vegetarian Chili with Butternut Squash, Sweet Potato, Apples, and Soy Beans #SoyInspired #sponsored #ad

Fall harvest vegetarian chili…it’s the apple of your eye.

Fall Harvest Vegetarian Chili with Butternut Squash, Sweet Potato, Apples, and Soy Beans #SoyInspired #sponsored #ad

Fall Harvest Vegetarian Chili with Kale

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Author: Julia


  • 2 tablespoons grapeseed or olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion chopped
  • ½ small butternut squash (3 cups), peeled and chopped
  • ½ medium sweet potato chopped (1-1/2 cups)
  • 1 honeycrisp apple peeled, cored, and chopped
  • 2 stalks celery chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon ground sage
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 cups low-sodium vegetable broth*
  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
  • 4 cups dino kale leaves tightly packed
  • 1 15-ounce can black beans drained and rinsed

For Serving:

  • Sour cream/plain yogurt
  • Fresh cilantro chopped


  1. Add the first 6 ingredients to a large stock pot and heat to medium.
  2. Sauté, stirring frequently, until mixture is very fragrant and veggies begin to soften, about 10 minutes.
  3. Add the next 5 ingredients (spices + salt), and continue sautéing for 2 minutes.
  4. Add the last four ingredients and stir well. Cover pot and bring to a boil.
  5. Lower the heat to a simmer and continue to cook at a gentle boil for 20 to 30 minutes, or until vegetables have softened.
  6. Serve with a dollop of plain yogurt or sour cream and fresh cilantro.

Recipe Notes

*You can also use low-sodium chicken broth.


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    1. Julia Post author

      I’d take a 10-foot snow storm over my golden goddessness any day 😉 Let’s hunker down in a snowstorm and make heaping pots of veggie chili!

    1. Julia Post author

      Gaaaah I’m so jealous of your snow! We’ve got nothing but sun in the forecast. Mondo sad face over here…mondo sad face. Although I guess I shouldn’t complain, because: tan. 😉

  1. tina

    This can’t possibly be better than your Sweet Potato, Black Bean and Quinoa Chili (my favorite) – or can it? I can’t wait to try.

  2. Sarah @ Making Thyme for Health

    Adding apples to chili is a brilliant idea! Plus with the butternut squash..mmm..mmmhhh, this looks good, sister!

    And I’m so jealous of your tan! It’s been warm here too but I’m locked inside all day so my skin tone has more of a Casper look to it. Seexxxay.

    1. Julia Post author

      I may have exaggerated a liiiitle, cause when I said, “tan,” what I really meant was “a little less white than a sheet of paper.” So essentially you’ve got nothing to be jelly about 😉 So happy you like the apples + bns idea!

    1. Julia Post author

      I keep seeing on the news that various parts of the country are fuh-reeeeezing and states are getting snow while we’re sitting here sunny and 70 degrees. Stay warm, lady!


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