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4.22 from 33 votes

Three Bean Chili

Enjoy this tasty chili alone or on a bed of brown, red, or black rice or cooked greens (or both!). It’s also a great topper for sweet potatoes.
Just as there are countless ways to make chili, there are just as many ways to serve it. Try it on a bed of cooked greens or whole grains. Use it as a taco filling. Toss it with whole wheat pasta. Top baked sweet potatoes or winter squash with it. Experiment and enjoy!
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time1 hr
Total Time1 hr 15 mins
Course: Soup
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4
Author: Dr. Michael Greger & Robin Robertson from The How Not to Die Cookbook


  • 2 cups Vegetable Broth
  • 1 red onion chopped
  • 1 bell pepper (any color) chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 small hot chile pepper seeded and minced
  • 2-3 cups chopped mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder or to taste
  • 1/4 cup jarred tomato paste
  • 1 can diced, salt-free tomatoes (BPA-free or Tetra Pak)
  • 1/2 cup dried red lentils
  • 1.5 cups cooked kidney beans, drained and rinsed or 1 15.5 oz BPA-free can or Tetra Pak
  • 1.5 cups cooked black beans, drained and rinsed or 1 15.5 oz BPA-free can or Tetra Pak
  • 2 tablespoons Umami Sauce
  • 1 1/4 inch piece fresh turmeric, grated or 1/4 teaspoon, ground
  • 1 tablespoon Savory Spice Blend or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper


  • In a large pot, heat 1 cup of the broth over medium heat. Add the onion and bell pepper and cook until softened, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, minced chile, and mushrooms, then stir in the chili powder and tomato paste. Add the remaining ingredients, including the remaining cup of broth, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the lentils are tender and the flavors are blended, about 50 minutes. Taste to adjust the seasonings, if needed, and serve hot.

15 responses to “Three Bean Chili

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  1. I cooked and ate beans plus the other daily dozen for six weeks. Enjoyed it. But then got diarrhea for four weeks. After lab tests and a colonoscopy GI doc says I have lymphocytic colitis and taking Entcort budesonide steroid. Seemed to help right away but I’m hesitant to go back on daily dozen for my cholesterol.

    1. Remember, you are a bio individual. The daily dozen might not be right for you. Or, you might have unresolved root causes (candida overgrowth, SIBO, parasites, leaky gut, etc.) contributing to cut issues, which makes it hard to digest certain foods without adverse side effects and malabsorption of nutrients. You might have unresolved food sensitivities (not allergies) which are causing delayed reactions.

  2. Sorry to hear that. I’m not a doctor, but I would think continuing on with a whole foods plant based diet will help heal or ease your situation. After all, we were designed for eating healthy. Sorry I’m not much help, but it looks like you wrote your question a few months ago. So I just wanted to give you some feedback.

  3. Jean,
    having certain health issues may increase your risk for lymphocytic colitis. These include:
    – Diabetes
    – Celiac disease
    – Irritable bowel syndrome
    – Certain types of thyroid disease
    – Being a smoker may also increase your risk for the issue.

    Certain medicines may also trigger the condition:
    – Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). These can include aspirin or ibuprofen.
    – Acid reflux medicines
    – High cholesterol medicines
    – Diabetes medicines
    – Medicines to treat depression

    If none of the above rings a bell, then it might have been just some bacteria, which tend to be the culprit as well.

    Hope this helps.

  4. Made it and love it. So quick and easy and so tasty and filling. I love that Dr Greger recipes have no fat. I made a couple batch and froze half so I always have some comfort food around. Thanks!

  5. I have just made this for the second time. This is so delicious and easy to make, even when I come home from a busy day. This time I added a little frozen kale at the end. A little nutritional yeast sprinkled on top is also tasty. Served today with homemade rye bread. So good! You can also change up the spices for a different flavour (Italian, Mexican or Hungarian…) Thanks for posting!

  6. Made this yesterday. What a phenomenal recipe. I’ve had many chili recipes over the years, and this one has got to be the best by far. Had the advantage of also trying out this recipe in my new Instant Pot. Super simple. I’m curious what Dr. Greger thinks about cooking with pressure cookers. Do they impact the nutritional value of the ingredients?

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