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chili mac topped with cheese and green onions in a bowl with a spoon
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5 from 1 vote

Vegetarian Chili Mac

This Vegetarian Chili Mac is a delicious mash up of two favorite meals: hearty vegetarian chili and gooey mac and cheese. This chili mac recipe is a quick and easy one pot dinner, perfect for busy days!
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time30 mins
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 447kcal


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 bell pepper chopped small, any color
  • 2 medium carrots chopped into ¼-inch pieces
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 15 ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 10 ounce can diced tomatoes with green chilies* such as RO*TEL
  • 8 ounces elbow macaroni pasta whole wheat or white
  • 15 ounce can black beans rinsed and drained
  • 15 ounce can red kidney beans rinsed and drained
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups shredded cheese cheddar, Monterey jack, mozzarella, or a combination


  • Heat the olive oil in a large skillet* or pot over medium heat. Add the onion, bell pepper and carrots and cook until softened, stirring occasionally, about 6 minutes.
  • Add the garlic, chili powder, cumin, and salt to the pan with the vegetables and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds.
  • Stir in the diced tomatoes, diced tomatoes with green chilies, pasta, black beans, kidney beans and water. Stir.
  • Increase the heat to medium-high and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to a low simmer, cover, and cook, stirring every few minutes, until pasta is tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed, about 12-15 minutes.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and stir in most of the cheese, reserving a little for sprinkling on top. Sprinkle on the remaining cheese. Serve.


  • You will need a skillet or pot that is at least 12 inches wide and 2 inches deep to fit the full recipe.
  • This recipe makes a chili mac with some spice to it. The spice is not overwhelming, but if your family prefers less spice I'd recommend using mild diced tomatoes with green chilies or subbing with a can of diced tomatoes without green chilies (fire roasted diced tomatoes would be delicious). To make the chili mac spicier, add a small amount of cayenne pepper or crushed red pepper flakes along with the other seasonings. 
  • To add meat to this recipe, add ground beef or ground turkey to the pan after sautéing the onion, carrots and bell pepper for a few minutes. Cook the meat, crumbling, until browned and then proceed with the recipe. 


Serving: 1/6 recipe | Calories: 447kcal | Carbohydrates: 63g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 29mg | Sodium: 1029mg | Potassium: 920mg | Fiber: 13g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 4811IU | Vitamin C: 42mg | Calcium: 306mg | Iron: 5mg
Nutrition information is only an estimate.
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