This is a recipe that has stuck with me for many years. It always makes me think of that time of year when summer's ending and you're taking out the soup pots. This chili is packed with veggies like beans, mushrooms and kale which contain plenty of phytonutrients and protein. You'll get a balance of sweetness from the yams and smokiness from the paprika and chipotle. All together it's a simple, one-pot family meal.
Set a medium stockpot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. (Don't use a nonstick pot.) Dice onion, and add it to the dry pot. Stir continuously until the onion begins to turn translucent, browns slightly, and begins to stick. Add 1/2 cup vegetable stock, to deglaze the onions.
Meanwhile, dice the sweet potato and set it aside. To the onions, add ground cumin, chili powder, smoked paprika, and chopped chipotle chile. Add diced sweet potato and remaining 2 cups of vegetable stock. Simmer over medium heat until the sweet potatoes begin to soften, about 6–8 minutes.
While the sweet potatoes are cooking, dice the zucchini and mushrooms. Crush the canned tomatoes by hand, and add them to the pot.
Add diced veggies. Rinse the canned beans, then add them to the pot. Season chili with salt to taste. Simmer over medium-low heat until vegetables are slightly tender, about 20 minutes. Coarsely chop kale and cilantro, and add to the pot.
Serve hot, garnished with an optional dollop of dairy-free sour cream, sliced avocado, and chopped scallions.