Using a family recipe, I created my own version of a homemade chili that can easily be made in a crockpot. This slow cooker method has become my new favorite because the cooking process allows the flavors to integrate thoroughly during the six hour cook-time. My homemade chili is thick, rich and fulfilling, perfect for a cool night at home.


  • 2 lbs of ground beef (you could also use ground turkey, ground chicken, OR a mixture of ground beef and Italian sausage)
  • 1 yellow onion (chopped)
  • 1 bell pepper (chopped)
  • 1 jalapeño (diced)
  • 2 (16 oz) cans of tomato sauce
  • 1 (16 oz) can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 (16 oz) can of light red kidney beans
  • 1 (16oz) can of dark red kidney beans
  • 1 cup of water (or 1/2 water, 1/2 chicken broth)
  • Chili seasoning:
    • 1 tbs chili powder
    • 1 tsp cumin
    • 1 1/2 tsp oregano
    • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
    • 1/2 tsp onion powder
    • 1 tsp salt
    • 1 tsp pepper
  • Toppings options:
    • Greek yogurt, diced jalapeño, shredded cheese, hot sauce, scallions


  1. In a large pan, brown the meat with the onions, peppers, and chili seasoning.
  2. Drain the grease from the pan, and put the mixture into the crockpot.
  3. Add the remaining ingredients.
  4. Add a touch more of each spice + herbs.
  5. If you want, add a dash of red wine to increase the complexity of the flavors.
  6. Cook on low for 6-8 hours, or until reduced and noticeably thickened (you may want to stir it every hour or so).

This is the Cuisinart Crockpot that I use and I LOVE it! Easy to program and cooks evenly: click here to check it out!

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