Fire Roasted Green Lentil Bean Chili

When it comes to hearty and healthy meals, few dishes can compete with a well-made chili. One such variation that promises both robust flavor and nutritional benefits is Fire Roasted Green Lentil Bean Chili. This dish is not only perfect for warming you up on a chilly day but also provides a protein-packed, fiber-rich, and deliciously complex meal that’s easy to prepare and enjoy. Let’s dive into what makes this chili special and how you can make it at home.

Why Green Lentil Bean Chili?

Chili is a versatile dish that can be made in countless ways, but using green lentils and beans as the base brings several unique advantages:

Nutritional Powerhouse: Green lentils and beans are rich in protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. They provide a plant-based protein source that’s essential for vegetarian and vegan diets.

Hearty Texture: Lentils and beans create a satisfying and hearty texture that stands up well to long cooking times, ensuring every bite is as enjoyable as the last.

Flavor Absorption: These ingredients readily absorb the rich, smoky flavors of fire-roasted tomatoes and spices, making every spoonful a taste explosion.


1. Prepare the Ingredients

Begin by preparing all your ingredients. Rinse the lentils and beans thoroughly, chop the vegetables, and measure out your spices. This mise en place will make the cooking process smoother and more enjoyable.

2. Sauté the Aromatics

In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the diced onion and bell peppers, sautéing until they begin to soften, about 5-7 minutes. Add the minced garlic and jalapeño (if using), and cook for an additional 2 minutes until fragrant.

3. Add the Spices

Stir in the chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika, and oregano. Allow the spices to toast slightly, releasing their aromas and flavors into the vegetables. This should take about 1-2 minutes.

4. Incorporate the Tomatoes and Lentils

Add the fire-roasted tomatoes, tomato sauce, and green lentils to the pot. Stir to combine, ensuring the lentils are well mixed with the aromatic vegetables and spices.

5. Simmer the Chili

Pour in the vegetable broth, bringing the mixture to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to low and let the chili simmer, uncovered, for about 30-40 minutes. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking and ensure even cooking. The lentils should become tender, absorbing the flavors of the spices and tomatoes.

6. Add the Beans

Once the lentils are tender, add the drained and rinsed black beans and kidney beans. Stir to combine, and let the chili simmer for an additional 15-20 minutes. This allows the beans to heat through and absorb the chili’s flavors.

7. Season and Finish

Season the chili with salt and pepper to taste. Just before serving, stir in the lime juice to brighten the flavors. If the chili is too thick, you can add more vegetable broth to achieve your desired consistency.

Serving Suggestions

Fire Roasted Green Lentil Bean Chili is a versatile dish that can be enjoyed in various ways. Here are some serving suggestions:

  • Traditional Style: Serve in bowls, topped with fresh cilantro, diced avocado, a dollop of sour cream, and shredded cheese for a classic chili experience.
  • Over Rice or Quinoa: Spoon the chili over a bed of cooked rice or quinoa for a more substantial meal.
  • In a Bread Bowl: Hollow out a round loaf of bread and serve the chili inside for a fun and edible presentation.
  • With Tortilla Chips: Use tortilla chips to scoop up the chili, nacho-style, for a crunchy and satisfying bite.

Health Benefits

This chili isn’t just delicious; it’s also packed with health benefits:

High in Protein: The combination of lentils and beans provides a complete protein source, making this chili an excellent option for vegetarians and vegans.

Rich in Fiber: Both lentils and beans are high in dietary fiber, which aids in digestion and helps maintain stable blood sugar levels.

Packed with Vitamins and Minerals: This chili is a great source of iron, potassium, folate, and magnesium, essential nutrients for overall health.

Low in Fat: With minimal added fat from the olive oil and optional toppings, this chili is a heart-healthy choice.

Variations and Tips

Feel free to customize this Fire Roasted Green Lentil Bean Chili to suit your tastes and dietary preferences:

Spicier Chili: Add more jalapeños or even a habanero pepper for extra heat.

Smokier Flavor: Increase the amount of smoked paprika or add a chipotle pepper in adobo sauce.

Different Beans: Swap out the black beans and kidney beans for pinto beans, cannellini beans, or your favorite bean variety.

Instant Pot Method: To save time, you can make this chili in an Instant Pot. Sauté the vegetables and spices using the sauté function, then add the remaining ingredients (except the lime juice and toppings). Cook on high pressure for 15 minutes, followed by a natural release.


Fire Roasted Green Lentil Bean Chili is a delicious, nutritious, and versatile dish that’s perfect for any occasion. Whether you’re looking for a comforting meal on a cold day, a protein-packed vegetarian option, or a dish to impress at your next gathering, this chili has you covered. With its rich, smoky flavors and hearty texture, it’s sure to become a favorite in your recipe repertoire. So gather your ingredients, fire up your stove, and enjoy a bowl of this delightful chili today!