Incomplete oxidation of titanium nitride (TiN) to prepare nitrogen-doped TiO2 was verified by calcining TiN at different temperatures in air for 30 min. The as-prepared samples were characterized by X-ray diffraction, UV-Vis diffuse reflectance spectra and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. The results confirmed that oxidizing TiN incompletely is an effective and simple method to prepare nitrogen-doped TiO2. Photocatalytic degradation of phenol was conducted to evaluate the photocatalytic activity of as-prepared samples. The results showed that phenol can be degraded efficiently by the as-prepared samples under visible light; low phenol concentration was conducive to degradation; the optimum calcination temperature and photocatalyst dosage are 650 °C and 0.5 g/L, respectively. The effects of different light sources on phenol degradation were compared. The reusability of nitrogen-doped TiO2 was tested and the results indicated a relatively good reusability under laboratory conditions.