Slow cooker chili is made with a mixture of beans, corn, tomatoes, ground beef, and seasonings. The slow cooking process creates a rich blend of flavors that your whole family will love.
My easy crockpot chili recipe is perfect for those cold winter months, summertime get-togethers, game day or a busy weeknight. There is no need to spend all day in the kitchen; let the slow cooker do all the work!
I know after one bite this will become your go-to chili recipe. It couldn’t be easier to make and is easily adaptable. It’s a chili your whole family will love!
If you love chili, try my Four Bean, Beef, and Beer Chili, or Chicken Chili recipes.
Table of Contents:
Ingredients to make Slow Cooker Chili
Let’s start by gathering the ingredients we need to make my easy Slow Cooker Chili recipe. In Chef Speak, this is called the Mise en Place, which translates into Everything in its Place.
Not only does setting your ingredients up ahead of time speed the cooking process, but it also helps ensure you have everything you need to make the dish.
Can I make adjustments to the recipe?
The great thing about making my slow cooker chili is you get to control the heat. If you like spicy chili, add additional chili powder, chili sauce, or hot sauce. Red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper can also be added to the mixture for a spicier flavor profile.
For a touch of sweetness, add brown sugar to the mixture. You can also use your favorite chili seasoning blend to make my recipe.
The tomatoes in this recipe are all interchangeable. You can use all crushed tomatoes or diced tomatoes. Using all tomato puree will result in a thicker sauce and may require adding additional water. You can also use tomato sauce and even jarred spaghetti sauce to make the recipe.
As for the beans in this recipe, feel free to use your favorite canned beans or reconstituted dried beans. I like a mixture, but you can use one type of beans or any combination of beans. Pinto beans, chili beans, and white beans are all great choices.
Ground turkey, ground chicken, and even ground pork can be used to make my crockpot chili recipe.
How to make Slow Cooker Chili
- Place a large skillet on the stove top over medium-high heat. Then add the olive oil to the pan, and when the oil is hot, add the onions and garlic to the pan.
- Cook until the onions are lightly cooked and tender. Stirring as needed.
- Add the ground beef to the pan.
- Cook the ground beef until it’s browned. Stir the beef to break it up into small pieces while it’s cooking.
Set the slow cooker to the low setting for 6 hours.
- Add the tomato puree, diced tomatoes, and crushed tomatoes to the slow cooker. Stir to combine.
- Add the pink beans, black beans, dark red kidney beans, and corn to the mixture. Stir to combine.
*Before adding the beans, drain and rinse them in cold water.
- Add the chili powder, cumin, black pepper, salt, and bay leaves to the slow cooker.
- Stir to thoroughly combine all ingredients.
*For a spicier chili, add additional chili powder, red pepper flakes, or cayenne pepper
- Add the cooked ground beef mixture to the tomato mixture.
- Stir to combine.
- Place the lid on the slow cooker and let the chili cook for 6 hours, stirring as needed. Slow cooking lets the flavors build during the low and slow cooking process.
- Remove the beef chili from the slow cooker and serve with your favorite toppings, tortillas, tortilla chips, corn chips, rice, or pasta.
If the chili is too thick, you can add beef broth, chicken broth or water to thin it out.
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Serve this delicious slow cooker with your favorite chili toppings. Sour cream, cheddar cheese, and green onions are some of my favorites.
This hearty chili can also be used to make chili dogs, tacos, burritos, or as a topping for burgers.
If you’ve never heard of Cincinnati chili, you have to try it. Serve the slow cooker chili over angel hair, spaghetti, or linguine, and top it with chopped onions, shredded cheddar, and sour cream.
You can also serve it over rice or your favorite grain.
Store any leftover chili, refrigerated, in an airtight container for 4-5 days, it’s actually more flavorful the next day. The chili freezes well and can be stored in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months.
The low and slow method of cooking lets the flavors blend together, creating a rich and flavorful chili.
No, you don’t. But browning the meat in a skillet before adding it to the slow cooker will help bring out its rich, savory flavors.
6-8 hours is the optimal time for cooking the chili. Low and slow will yield the best results.
More Slow Cooker Recipes
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