Vegetarian Instant Pot Chili with black beans and pumpkin

Pumpkin Black Bean Chili Recipe | The Gluten-Free Instant Pot Cookbook

  • Author: Robin


This vegetarian Instant Pot chili is spicy and delicious, and so healthy, too. I topped mine with cheese and sour cream, but on its own it is vegan. This recipe makes a large amount, but fortunately it keeps well. I’m planning to freeze several portions so that I can enjoy it down the road some day when I don’t even have time to whip up an Instant Pot dinner. Reprinted with permission from The Gluten-Free Instant Pot Cookbook.


1 (28-ounce or 784 g) can fire-roasted diced tomatoes, including juice
1 large poblano pepper, seeded and finely chopped
2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and minced
1 chipotle pepper from canned gluten-free chipotle in adobo, chopped
1 medium yellow onion, minced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cups (210 g) chopped walnuts, toasted*
2 cups (400 g) red lentils
1 tablespoon (15 ml) sauce from the chipotles in adobo, or more depending on your heat preference (La Costeña brand is gluten free)
2 teaspoons (12 g) salt
3 tablespoons (24 g) gluten-free chili powder (Penzey’s and McCormick clearly label their products)
2 tablespoons (14 g) smoked paprika (Penzey’s brand is gluten free)
7 cups (1645 ml) vegetable stock, divided (recipe included in book, I used store-bought veggie broth)
1 (14-ounce, or 392 g) can pumpkin puree (not pie filling)
2 (15-ounce, or 438 g) cans black beans, well rinsed and drained


  1. Place the tomatoes, peppers, onion, garlic, walnuts, lentils, and seasonings in the inner pot of your electric pressure cooker. Stir in 6 cups (1410 ml) of the vegetable stock.
  2. Close and lock the lid, making sure the steam release knob is in the sealing position. Cook on high pressure for 30 minutes.
  3. When the cooking time is complete, do a quick release by opening the release knob and venting all the steam. When the float pin drops, unlock the lid and open it carefully.
  4. Stir in the pumpkin puree, black beans, and 1/2 cup (120 ml) of remaining stock. Lock the lid back in place and allow the beans to warm through, about 5 minutes. If the chili is too thick, add the remaining 1/2 cup (120 ml) stock and stir well.
  5. Serve with avocado, lime wedges, cilantro, and corn bread as desired.


Since I am allergic to walnuts, I asked the authors what I should substitute. They said that the walnuts are meant to mimic the texture of ground meat and that they could be left out, which is what I did. I think the chili would be even better with the nuts as some contrasting texture would have been welcome. I would think you could easily substitute other nuts (almonds or pecans, perhaps) or pumpkin or sunflower seeds. Since my family is not vegetarian, the next time I make it, I might just add some browned ground turkey.

The book says that the recipe serves 6, but even made without the walnuts (and with no substitute), I found it made a large amount, easily enough to make several meals for my family of three. It keeps well and makes great leftovers, so this is a bonus for me, but just something to keep in mind if you are cooking for a small family and don’t want a lot of leftovers. The recipe is easily halved.

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