A warm bowl of Slow Cooker Beef Chili with a nice piece of cornbread is the perfect comfort meal on a brisk day.
Use your crockpot to make this recipe ahead of time for dinner or a party. Like my Slow Cooker Irish Beef Stew, this ground beef chili slow cooker recipe practically comes together on its own.
Use your crockpot to make this recipe ahead of time for dinner or a party. Like my Slow Cooker Irish Beef Stew, this recipe practically comes together on its own.
Why This Recipe
Fast and Easy. No need to stand over a stovetop stirring for hours. Just brown the ground beef, dice everything up, drain the beans, throw it all in the crockpot, and let it cook all day.
Delicious Flavors. Letting this soup simmer in your slow cooker all day allows the flavors to meld and deepen.
On the Table in Minutes. Perfect for those busy weeknights or game days when you want to just be able to walk in the door and serve up a bowl of hot soup. Let the crockpot simmer the soup all day and it will be ready to go!
How to Make Slow Cooker Beef Chili
This slow cooker beef chili recipe is so easy. Once the ground beef is browned and drained of grease, you can literally just throw everything in your slow cooker as you open cans or dice vegetables. When you are finished getting everything in the pot, just put the lid on, turn it on, and walk away. Several hours later, you will have delicious chili.
Ingredients for Slow Cooker Beef Chili
Ground Chuck. 90-10 or 85-15 ground beef will work best so that you don't have excess fat. Be sure to drain the ground beef in a colander before adding it to your slow cooker.
Large Onion. Red or yellow onions will both work.
Green Bell Pepper. If you can't find a good green pepper, red peppers will work.
Garlic Powder. I like the simplicity of garlic powder but you can also mince garlic cloves directly into your slow cooker if you prefer.
Beef Broth. Add less if you prefer a thick chili and more if you prefer a thinner chili. You can even leave it out entirely if you like.
Light Red Kidney Beans. You could also use black beans.
Can of Diced Tomatoes. Petite diced are perfectly sized for a spoon!
Tomato Paste. Adds intensity of flavor.
Chili Powder. This gives chili its classic flavor but not much heat.
Ground Cumin. Also intrinsic to the classic slow cooker beef chili flavor.
Salt and Black Pepper. To taste. You might not find it necessary at all.
Cayenne Pepper. Optional - for added heat. If you don't have this you can use ancho chili powder or red pepper flakes.
- In a large skillet over medium-high heat, add the ground beef, onion, and green pepper.
- Cook until the beef is completely browned.
- Transfer the meat mixture to a colander to drain well.
- Transfer the beef to the slow cooker.
- Add the remaining ingredients to the slow cooker.
- Cover and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours.
- Serve with desired toppings such as diced onion, shredded cheese, or sour cream.
- Slow Cooker
Tips for Slow Cooker Beef Chili
Break up the ground beef thoroughly into bite-sized pieces or smaller so that it easily fits on a spoon.
Dice the vegetables so that they are similar in size to the ground beef. Having everything similar in size creates a very pleasant texture.
Can I cook slow cooker beef chili on high?
Yes. The ground beef is cooked before you begin, so you just need all of the vegetables to cook through and the flavors to meld. Four hours on high would work perfectly fine. If you have even less time than that, consider using the stovetop.
Do you have to cook beef before slow cooker chili?
No. You do not technically "have to" cook the beef before making the chili. However, if you do not cook the beef, it will have a lot less flavor.
Browning the meat seals in the juices. Leaving it raw will allow the juices to escape as it boils in the crockpot. So I recommend that you do cook it even though you do not have to.
What pairs well with chili?
Slow cooker beef chili pairs really well with cornbread or breadsticks. You could also serve it with or on baked potatoes, french fries, or sweet potato fries.
Grilled cheese or cheese quesadillas are both neutral sandwiches that complement the intense flavors of chili. Crunchy onion rings or coleslaw are both a nice contrast.
What type of ground beef for chili?
I recommend ground chuck for the best flavor and tenderness. You can use ground sirloin, but it tends to be tough.
How do I store leftover chili?
You can refrigerate or freeze individual servings in airtight containers and have a handy lunch, dinner, or snack whenever you'd like hot soup.
Just pop that container in the microwave for three to five minutes and your soup is ready to go. Refrigerated leftovers will last for two or three days. Frozen leftovers will last for up to three months.
Can I make slow cooker beef chili in the Instant Pot?
Yes. Brown the ground beef directly in the pot, add the remaining ingredients except for the beans and cook on high pressure for 10 minutes.
Release the pressure and stir in the beans. Allow the beans to cook through and then serve.
More Easy Chili Recipes
Slow Cooker Beef Chili Recipe Crock pot
- 2.25 pounds ground chuck
- 1 large onion diced
- 1 green bell pepper seeded and diced
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 to 4 cups beef broth depending on desired thickness
- 2 15 ounce cans light red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 28 ounce can diced tomatoes
- 1 6 ounce can tomato paste
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin powder
- Salt and black pepper to taste
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper optional
- In a large skillet over medium-high heat, add the ground beef, onion, and green pepper. Cook until the beef is completely browned. Transfer the meat mixture to a colander to drain well.
- Transfer the beef to the slow cooker. Add the remaining ingredients to the slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours.
- Serve with desired toppings: diced onion, shredded cheese, and/or sour cream.
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