Black bean and sweet potato bake in the crock pot.


This was our dinner from Monday but after a week of pure madness with the weather again, I’m finally sitting down to blog about it.  My husband has now embraced the vegetarian lifestyle (for the moment) and I’ll admit, it’s becoming a balancing act between three carnivores and two vegetarians for dinner.  I’m having flashbacks of when my kids were younger and everyone wanted something different for dinner.  Moms out there know exactly what I’m talking about!  So Mondays are strictly Meatless Mondays here now. It helps me out a tremendous amount – taking the guesswork out of what’s for dinner and my kids know not to look for the elusive meat choice of the night.  Plus one night without meat won’t kill them, despite what they think.

This recipe takes seconds to get together and put in your slow cooker/multi cooker/crock pot.  I’ll admit, not a gorgeous dish but it rocks your tastebuds!  I’ve been eating the leftovers and it just gets better every day.  Plus it’s loaded with beans for protein and great vitamins!  A good friend of mine dropped off some of her special Indian rice and we served this over that.  All I can say is HEAVENLY!


Drizzle of olive oil in your skillet over medium heat
1 medium onion, diced finely
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 small can of tomato paste
3 tablespoons of ground cumin
2 tablespoons of chili powder
1 teaspoon of smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon of oregano
Water or vegetable broth
1 -12 oz jar of salsa (store bought or homemade) I used Trader Joe’s corn salsa in this recipe
30 ounces of black beans, canned- rinsed well
2 large sweet potatoes, diced
Salt and Pepper
1/4 cup of shredded Cabot aged cheddar to top each bowl (or more if you prefer)

*Omit cheese for vegan option.


Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat.  Add your onion and sauté until translucent.  Right before the onion is fully cooked, add the garlic and sauté for another 30 seconds or so.  Then add in your paste.  Give a good stir then add your spices.  Add a small amount of liquid (1/4 cup) of water or broth and stir to loosen.  Pour this into your slow cooker and add the remaining ingredients.  Cook on low for 4-6 hours.  Serve over brown rice, kamut, quinoa or whatever you like.  Adjust the salt and pepper as necessary.

— Knead to Cook

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  1. I made this tonight and it was lovely! However, I have quite a bit of leftovers. I was wondering if this can be frozen to use at a later day?

  2. I have this cooking now! I’m excited to try it! Is it just me, or is really thick? I bought the smallest can of tomato paste that I could find.. ( I think 5oz)

    1. Dee, I’ve found that the freshness of spices really can amp up the flavor. I’m glad you adjusted it per your taste. Thank you for the feedback and wishing you a wonderful day! Robin

  3. Found on Pinterest (I think) and made tonight using only half the amount of spices (just a personal preference). This was so good. I ended up using a whole can of chicken broth and served it over brown rice. My husband actually stopped eating, looked at me and said, “this dish you made tonight is so good”. Putting leftovers in the fridge and looking forward to them.