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Vegetarian, Vegan Chili, Gluten Free Chili, Vegetarian Chili, Spinach Chili, Rajma

Vegetarian, Vegan Chili, Gluten Free Chili, Vegetarian Chili, Spinach Chili, Rajma

This Vegetarian Chili with Spinach also is known as Rajma is hot, healthy, delicious and protein packed. They’re practical in that you can make large batches and enjoy for days on end. This can be made with very simple ingredients and stays well for couple days for you to enjoy as left overs.  When you add the right spices, everything tastes exceptionally good and so is this Vegetarian Chili.  And the best part is this Vegetarian Chili with Spinach dish is not only Vegan but also Gluten Free.

For me,  Rajma or Chili was an acquired taste. I didn’t eat a lot of Rajma/Chili while growing up. I did develop a taste for it when I started making it for my husband who loves this dish a lot and always complains that I don’t make this frequently.

The way, I prepare the Rajma is slightly different than the chili you get here. I don’t add minced meat in it nor do I add stock in it. I keep it simple and the taste doesn’t vary vastly from the famous chili that you get here.

The red kidney beans are loaded with protein and make a  healthy and filling dish. I went another step up and added chopped spinach in my rajma/chili. It was delicious. I still made the beans to be the star though and the spinach just added to the flavor.

This thick, satisfying, spicy rajma/chili’s creamy texture is comforting.

If you are not using canned beans and want to prep your beans from scratch then follow the following steps.

Vegetarian, Vegan Chili, Gluten Free Chili, Vegetarian Chili, Spinach Chili, Rajma

Vegetarian, Vegan Chili, Gluten Free Chili, Vegetarian Chili, Spinach Chili, Rajma

Vegetarian, Vegan Chili, Gluten Free Chili, Vegetarian Chili, Spinach Chili, Rajma


  • 3 cups rajma/red kidney beans soaked overnight and boiled (Alternatively, you can use canned red beans)
  • 4 TBSP oil
  • 1 large red onion, finely chopped
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1-inch ginger minced
  • 3 TBSP chili powder
  • 1 TBSP ground lightly toasted cumin seeds
  • 3 big tomatoes pureed
  • 1 TBSP tomato ketchup or pasta sauce (this will give a very rich red color to your chili/rajma)
  • 1 cup spinach (I used Costco’s organic spinach mix)
  • Salt to taste
  • ½ cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 TSP Turmeric
  • 2 green chilies sliced (optional)


  • Heat the oil over medium heat in a heavy nonstick skillet
  • Add the onion and stir, until they are tender and beginning to color, about 8 minutes.
  • Stir in the garlic and ginger, and stir together until the raw smell of garlic is gone, for about a minute.
  • Add the ground chili, cumin, chopped green chilies, chopped tomatoes, turmeric, and salt
  • Cook, stirring, for 10 minutes, until the mixture begins to stick to the pan and the oil starts to separate from the onion-tomato masala
  • Stir in the tomato ketchup/pasta sauce. Simmer for about another 10 minutes until the mixture is thick and fragrant.
  • Add the boiled/canned rajma/red kidney beans and add the desired amount of water
  • Cook for another 40 to 45 minutes on medium to low heat
  • Add the chopped spinach into it and cook for another 10 minutes covered. With a wooden spoon mash the beans a bit to thicken the gravy.
  • Shortly before serving stir in the cilantro and simmer for 5 minutes

How to Pressure Cook Dried Red Kidney Beans
Soak the beans overnight.
Wash off kidney beans and add to pressure cooker with enough water.
Bring kidneys beans to a boil.
Turn heat to medium and place cover and stopper on top.
Once the stopper starts to rock, cook kidney beans for 20-25 minutes.
Turn heat off.
Only after the pressure has completely released from cooker, should you open it (~25 minutes and as a check, make sure the pressure valve is no longer raised).
Check that beans are cooked and if not, boil for a bit more with lid off.

Then follow the method to make the Chili.

Crock Pot Method:

  • Combine all the ingredients in a crock pot or slow cooker and give them a quick stir.
  • Cover and cook on your crock pot’s low setting for about 6 to 8 hours.

Insta Pot Method:

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Vegetarian, Vegan Chili, Gluten Free Chili, Vegetarian Chili, Spinach Chili, Rajma







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  1. Never tried a similar recipe, sounds delicious 😀

  2. It is the exact same thing with us here. I didnt grow up eating rajma and I dont care for it that much, where as the husband loves it 😀 The spinach in it is a great idea, maybe I will like it just a little more with this 🙂

  3. Yummy this looks and sounds delicious! I definitely want to give this a go! 😋

  4. Ohh yes my husband will love this! We only wat meat once a week so this receipe is perfect because aawell my daughter loves beans and spinach! Thanks you very much!

  5. Looks so delicious, beautifully captured!

  6. robin rue says:

    Oh yum! My hubby would be drooling over this! It sounds like a wonderful winter meal idea!

  7. I didn’t know there was such a thing as Spinach chili! This looks and sounds so satisfying!

  8. Oh man this looks totally food. I love the combo of beans and spinach. its so nice to have another meatless monday recipe. Thanks for sharing this awesome recipe!

  9. Mmm, I love my chili. I’d give this a try for sure. It sounds like something I’d really enjoy.

  10. This sounds like a nice change to my usual chili recipe. I tend to save chili dishes for the fall and winter because the weather is cooler, and the hot chili always warms us up. But I think I’ll try this in the next few weeks.

  11. I never would have thought to include spinach in chili. Adding the leafy green vegetable sounds absolutely amazing though!

  12. It’s quite amazing to see foods prepared in different ways. We also include chili in some of our dishes so I’m sure I would surely love this dish.

  13. confettiandbliss says:

    Mmmm….Your Spinach Chili looks divine! It’s a perfect comfort food recipe. From your photos I can almost taste it right now. 🙂

  14. I love spicy foods and I bet I would enjoy spinach Rajma too! Thanks for sharing your secret recipe 🙂

  15. The pressure cooker is great for cooking kidney beans, it gets to the right temperature to cook them properly. I love putting spinach in curry, it’s packed full of iron

  16. I don’t cook or know a lot of spinach recipes so I always get interested whenever I come across one! This looks so good and I love anything that’s spicy!

  17. Hi.. nice recipe.. would definitely try it 🙂

  18. Your instructions are pretty clear and detailed. This is actually an unheard-of combination to me. Thanks for sharing!

  19. silviaandgrace says:

    The photos look awesome and the recipe looks yummy. Would you have any advice for someone running a food blog on how to take the best photos.
    Thanks and keep up the good work.

  20. this looks delicious and a great recipe! I couldn’t help but notice your beautiful ladle too, where is it from?

  21. My family loves chili and I love that you added so much additional nutrition with the spinach!

  22. I love chilli! I like chilli beans instead of kidney. I’ll have to make this when fall comes! Perfect comfort food.

  23. theclutterboxblog says:

    This sounds so good! I love a well spiced chili! This will be perfect for fall days!

  24. Ooh this looks so good! I love me some good chili and the twist you put on it looks absolutely amazing! Cant wait to try it!

  25. I love chilli and I’ve been eating more vegetarian food lately so I’m definitely going to have to try this recipe!

  26. Your photos look stunning – I bet it was super delicious. I like spinach, sounds like a great a idea to spice it up a bit!

  27. This looks and sounds so yummy. I love to try new dishes in the kitchen and I love to introduce my family to new flavors.

  28. I love chilli!! I will have to check this recipe out because your pictures make it look oh so yummy !!

  29. This such an awesome spin on chili. I will have to give this a try in the cool winter months. So much flavour…and we LOVE spinach. What a great and different way to enjoy it.

  30. Chili has always been one of my favorite foods especially in the winter months. I have never made spinach chili but it does sound good. My son doesn’t eat meat anymore right now so this would be a perfect dish to make for his. Thanks for sharing the recipe.

  31. I’m not a big fan of chili because of my GERD, but I do love spinach!! My mom makes this spinach soup with corn, it is very good!!!

    Love your pictures!!

  32. This sounds very interesting. I never thought of using spinach in chili. Sounds worth trying.

  33. I’ve never heard of putting spinach in chili. This sounds like a yummy recipe. I would love to make this sometime.

  34. I didn’t soak the beans overnight with my first chili. That was many years ago and people in the fam. still laugh about it. 😉 This one sounds good.

  35. My kids are obsessed with homemade chili. But if I could sneak in some greens, that would be amazing. Checking this out.

  36. Chili is on a regular rotation in our home. I love that this recipe includes spinach, I’m going to have to try it!

  37. Just looking at this dish makes me believe there is a good spice to it. I think it’s cute he says you don’t make it enough, I mean he could learn and then you could do it together. Your recipe though looks absolutely amazing and to be shared with others.

  38. Good vegetarian chili is hard to find. This recipe both sounds and looks amazing. I will have to try this out when I get the chance. Although I don’t have a pressure cooker. Although I have always thought about getting one. Maybe this will inspire me.

  39. ooo this looks like an interesting dish! We don’t often make chilli but I think this would be a good variation to try!

  40. After my pregnancy, I’ll definitely try to cook this dish. This looks really tasty and delicious!

  41. This looks divine! I love your photos and I love a hearty cup of chili! I have never added spinach to mine, but it sounds like a great complement of flavors.

  42. What a delicious-looking chili! I’ll pretty much take chili in any form, especially during fall and winter. Definitely adding this one to my To-Try list for when the weather gets a bit cooler.

  43. What an amazing combo, I would never have thought to put the two together! We make chili pretty often I’m going to add this one to the rotation.

  44. I have only had red kidney beans once and I loved them. I am going to save this and try it out. Thanks

  45. Krystle Cook says:

    This is such a great way to bring spinach into a diet. I am going to have to try this!

  46. Thank you so much and absolutely I can help another food blogger

  47. mistimaan says:

    Such a wonderful recipe with nice pictures 🙂

  48. Elizabeth O says:

    I love vegetarian chili and used to make it quite a lot in the fall. I haven’t made a chili dish in ages but will start up again when the weather cools. This looks delicious!