Slow Cooker Easy Beef & Bean Chili is super fast to prep and yields rich, hearty results every time. Pile on the toppings and have yourself some chili tonight!
There's nothing quite like a warm, hearty bowl of chili to look forward to at the end of the day. Especially if that chili is simmering slowly away in the slow cooker all day while you're doing other things. And particularly if that chili only requires a few minutes of prep and a minimal number of ingredients.
We kind of love chili around here. It's hearty enough for Andrew and Elle will actually eat it, so in my book that counts as love. I often make a quick stovetop version (this 20-Minute Reset Turkey Chili is one of my favs), but when I want to go the slow cooker route, this one is gold.
I know a lot of slow cooker recipes that use beef call for browning it first on the stovetop prior to adding it to the slow cooker. I completely agree that this method adds an additional layer of flavor to the final chili, but in all honesty I rarely feel like turning on the oven and getting another pan dirty when I'm prepping a slow cooker recipe. So you know what? We're just going to go ahead and skip that step.
The flavor here is still rich and deep from the long cooking time. I also think using fire roasted tomatoes adds another layer of flavor and makes up for the lack of browning. If you can't find fire roasted, though, go ahead and use regular. I love how tender the beef becomes after the low, slow braise in the slow cooker. So good.
Since I'm feeding a somewhat finicky 4-year old who protests spicy food with a vengeance, this chili is quite mild. If you like things spicy, feel free to load up on the hot sauce while serving. On that note, this chili lends itself to all kinds of toppings, so feel free to pile them on and enjoy. Now let's make some chili!
RECIPE & KID-FRIENDLY ADAPTATIONS
1 | If your child won't go for chili, try picking out some chunks of beef and some beans and serving them separately on a plate.
2 | Serve the chili with whatever toppings you like. Tortilla chips, sour cream, grated cheese, avocado, chopped scallions, and cilantro are all good options.
THIS RECIPE IS . . .
Naturally Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, and Sugar-Free
Slow Cooker Easy Beef and Bean Chili
1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
1 large red bell pepper, chopped
2 14.5-oz cans petite fire-roasted tomatoes
2 15-oz cans kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1-3 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon mild chili powder
1 ½ pounds beef stew meat, grass-fed if possible, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 tablespoon lime juice (from about ½ lime)
Hot sauce (optional)
1. Combine the onion, bell pepper, tomatoes, beans, salt, cumin, garlic powder, chili powder and meat in a 6-quart slow cooker, stirring to combine.
2. Cover and cook on high for 5-6 hours or low for 7-8 hours, or until the meat is very tender.
3. Remove the beef, shred into large pieces with two forks, then return to the slow cooker, stirring to combine.
4. Add the lime juice, stir, and taste, adding additional lime juice or salt if you like. Serve with hot sauce and whatever toppings you prefer.