Slow Cooker Chili

With a batch of chili stewing in my slow cooker right now, I thought I would share with you my absolute favourite, go-to chili recipe. Even with children invading your kitchen, you will find this super easy to make, and on these cold winter nights, a warm bowl of chili soothes the grumpiest of people!

Delicious to eat Slow Cooker Chili - easy to make in a Crock Pot! Thanks to @west_coastmama

Confession: Growing up a daughter of Polish parents who had just immigrated to Canada, I only ate chili on a very rare occasion, and it came out of a can! In my twenties when I was learning to cook, Jay & I experimented with a ton of recipes before we struck gold. We’ve tried vegetarian, turkey, chicken, beef – all types of recipes, but when I found this one a few years ago, it just stuck.

It uses a chili seasoning mix that you make yourself by mixing basic spices that you most likely already have. I also find this recipe very versatile because I change the recipe a bit each time I make it, and it always comes out perfectly delicious.

The secret to this recipe is the can of red kidney beans that is completely blended/processed until smooth. It adds a richness and thickness to the stew that I love.

You can easily make substitutions by switching up the meat (or forgoing it completely), adding in vegetables like celery, carrots, mushrooms – whatever you wish! I also sometimes add in different beans – whatever I have lying around. You can also add more of the seasoning mix if you like it more spicy!

Below is the basic recipe that I had written down on a piece of paper forever! Feel free to add your favourite items to it as you wish!

I love serving it with an array of garnishes so you can help yourself to whatever you like. My favourite garnishes: grated cheese, sour cream, green onion/chives, cilantro, limes, avocado, breadsticks, crackers, buns, hot sauce – just to name a few! I hope you enjoy the recipe and let me know how you like it!

PS. I recently came across an “award-winning” chili recipe, and their secret ingredient was to add 2 tablespoons of cream cheese to the chili. It apparently adds a richness to it – I haven’t tried it yet but will in the future!

Slow Cooker Chili
Recipe type: Chili
A delicious chili that you can add your own touch to or simply make the original!
For The Chili Seasoning
  • 4 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2½ tsp ground coriander
  • 2½ tsp ground cumin
  • 1½ tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper (add more for required heat)
For The Chili
  • 1½ lbs ground beef
  • ½ onion, minced
  • 1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 (15 oz) can tomato sauce
  • 2 (15 oz) cans kidney beans
  1. Mix together seasoning mix and store in an airtight jar. (You will only use 3-4 tsp in this recipe.)
  2. In a skillet, cook ground beef until no longer pink, then drain.
  3. Add onion and 3 tsp of seasoning mix.
  4. In the slow cooker, add diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, one can of beans, and two more teaspoons of seasoning mix.
  5. Place the other can of beans in a blender and process until smooth.
  6. Add beans and meat to the slow cooker, and stir together.
  7. Cook on low for 6 to 8 hours.
You can add as many veggies as you like to this recipe, I often add mushrooms, carrots and celery.
Garnish bowls of chill with sour cream, shredded cheese, green onion and cilantro!

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7 thoughts on “Slow Cooker Chili

  1. This looks great! With fall just around the corner here in Michigan, I am excited to try this out. I have never made chili with pureed kidney beans, but imagine that it really helps to thicken it up!

    1. I think it depends how late at night you would set it for? I mean, if you start it at 9 or 10 pm and let it sit in the slow cooker for 10 hours, it will be perfect the next day when you wake up.