This cold, dreary weather got me craving a warm, rich bowl of chili, but I didn’t want to spend all day in the icy kitchen.

So I made this Weeknight Black Bean Chili and crawled back under the cozy blankets as quick as I could (with another warm bowl, of course!).

The fact that it comes together in about 30 minutes with very little prep makes it a good black bean chili for a weeknight meal. It’s also super filling and comforting, yet still healthy enough to keep you going the next day.

It’s terrible to feel sluggish mid-week after stress eating heavy dinners the night before (hi, takeout pizza, I’m looking at YOU).

This Weeknight Black Bean Chili will keep you going until Friday in a healthy and nourishing way.

But hey, if you still need a little indulgence, add some shredded cheese, sour cream, Jalapeño slices, or even serve it with some tortilla chips. It’s not necessary to be 100 percent good all the time.

Serve Weekninght black bean chili with a side of Jalapeo Cheddar Cornbread.

You can serve this recipe with a side of Jalapeño Cheddar Cornbread.

Recipe for Weeknight Black Bean Chili

On a busy weeknight, you can prepare this easy and comforting black bean chili quickly and easily. It is rich in chili spices and full of the goodness of black beans.

Prep Time: 10 mins / Cook Time: 25 mins / Total Time: 35 mins

Servings: 6 (just over one cup each)


  • 1 Tbsp olive oil ($0.16)
  • 1 yellow onion ($0.32)
  • 4 cloves garlic ($0.32)
  • 1/2 lb. ground turkey ($2.50)
  • 3 15oz. cans black beans ($2.37)
  • 1 15oz. can diced tomatoes with green chiles* ($0.79)
  • 3 oz. tomato paste (1/2 of a 6oz. can or about 1/4 cup) ($0.26)
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder** ($0.30)
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin ($0.05)
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika ($0.05)
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano ($0.05)
  • 1/4 tsp salt (or to taste) ($0.02)


  • Dice the onion and mince the garlic. Add the onion and garlic to a large pot with 1 Tbsp olive oil and cook over medium-low heat just until softened (2-3 minutes).
  • Add the ground turkey to the pot and continue to sauté until the turkey is cooked through (5-7 minutes). Break the turkey up into small crumbles with your spoon as it cooks.
  • Add the three cans of beans (undrained), the diced tomatoes (undrained), tomato paste, chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika, and oregano. Stir everything to combine.
  • Let the chili simmer for about 10 minutes to let the flavors blend and help the liquid thicken slightly. Taste the chili and add salt as needed (this will depend on the salt content of your canned goods. I added about 1/4 tsp). Serve with your favorite chili toppings.


*If you want a mild chili, you can use plain diced tomatoes instead of diced tomatoes with green chiles.
**This chili powder is a mild, earthy blend of spices, including mild red chiles.


Serving: 1 Cup ・ Calories: 414.68 kcal ・ Carbohydrates: 61.3 g ・ Protein: 27.08 g ・ Fat: 8.32 g ・ Sodium: 1193.58 mg ・ Fiber: 23.25 g

The nutritional values shown here are only estimates. Please see our nutrition disclaimer.

Close up of a spoonful of Weeknight Black Bean Chili with the bowl in the background.

How To Make Weeknight Black Bean Chili – Step by Step Photos

Onions and Garlic

Slice one yellow onion and mince four cloves of garlic. Sauté them with 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large pot until soft (2-3 minutes).

Ground Turkey

For this recipe, I used 1/2 lb. of ground turkey (left the other half in the freezer), but you could swap in beef, pork, or chicken.

Browned Turkey

In the same pot, combine the ground turkey and continue to sauté until the turkey is cooked through, breaking up the meat into crumbles as it cooks. The turkey is done when the pieces are firm and white (no longer pink).

Canned Goods

The next step is to add the canned goods. When I cook with beans, I usually drain them and rinse them, but here I do not want to do that. The starchy liquid will lend the chili a nice thickening effect.

So I added 3 15oz. cans of black beans, 1 15oz. can of diced tomatoes with chiles, and 1/2 a 6oz. can of tomato paste (that’s not pictured because I pulled it out of my freezer).


Add 1/2 tsp smoked paprika, 1/2 tsp oregano, 1/2 tsp cumin and 1 Tbsp chili powder. I use mild chili powder, which contains mild chile peppers, to make chili. The red chile powder is not straight red chile powder, which is quite spicy.

Simmer the Chili

Cook the chili over low heat for about 10 minutes, which will help blend the flavors and thicken the sauce. Taste it and add salt as necessary. I used about 1/4 tsp. And that’s it! You’re done!

Black Bean Chili -
As far as crowd pleasers go, chili is one that everyone will enjoy, and it does not have to simmer all day like it does in a chili cook off in order to be outstanding.
Finished bowl of Weeknight Black Bean Chili with toppings on a black and white napkin.
This recipe for Weeknight Black Bean Chili made just over seven cups, or six heaping cup-full sized servings.

In order to make crispy tortilla strips for the chili, I followed my Baked Tortilla Chips recipe, but cut the tortillas into skinny strips rather than triangles.

This recipe takes a shorter cooking time because it is so small, but it is still so easy to prepare!