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This Easy Slow Cooker Chili simmers all day in the crock pot creating a hearty, flavorful dinner. Ground beef, beans, bell peppers, onion, tomato and spices create a thick and flavorful chili that your family will love!

A bowl of slow cooker chili topped with avocado, corn chips, grated cheese and sour cream, garnished with parsley.

Slow Cooker Chili is such a hearty and satisfying meal for cooler weather. I love that this recipe is made in the crock pot, so can be simmering all day while I do other things. This recipe makes a large amount, so I usually end up freezing some to have on hand for easy meals in the future.

Ingredients for chili - Ground beef, olive oil, beef stock, canned beans, canned diced tomatoes, Worcestershire sauce, beer, onion, garlic, canned green chilis, canned tomato sauce, red bell pepper, green bell pepper, a small white dish with spices and salt.

Ingredients for Chili

  • Olive oil – For sauteing aromatics.
  • ground beef – this is beef chili after all! Ground turkey would also work.
  • onion – I use yellow or sweet onion.
  • bell peppers – I like to use one red and one green, but any color will be fine.
  • garlic – I use about 4 cloves, but measure with your heart.
  • diced tomatoes – 2 x 15 ounce cans, with the juice.
  • diced green chilis – I use two 4 ounce cans, some cans are sold in 7 ounce sizes and that is also fine.
  • tomato sauce – This creates the base of the chili so that it is thick and flavorful.
  • beer – I feel like this adds a huge amount of flavor, but if you don’t want to use beer you can leave it out.
  • beef broth – adds flavor and thins out the chili a little.
  • Worcestershire sauce – This is another way to punch up the flavor.
  • cocoa powder – optional, but adds depth of flavor.
  • Spices (paprika, cumin and chili powder) – feel free to adjust to your tastes.
  • Salt – I suggest starting with one teaspoon of kosher salt, then adding more to taste it necessary,
  • beans – you can use whatever you want. I used a three bean blend, you can also use any combination of kidney beans, black beans or pinto beans.
A saute pan with diced onions, red and green bell pepper, and garlic.

How to make the best slow cooker chili

Although this recipe has a long list of ingredients, it comes together pretty quickly and then cooks itself in the slow cooker all day while you are busy with other stuff. When ready to eat, add the beans and then serve loaded with toppings.

  • Start with sauteing the onions, bell peppers and garlic. This will help them soften up and improve their flavor.
  • Next, brown the beef. Pour off excess liquid, although adding some of it to the slow cooker is fine.
  • Add the remaining ingredients to the slow cooker, except the beans. Cook on low for about 6 hours.
  • Right before serving, add the beans, and allow them to just warm though. You don’t want to cook them for very long or they will fall apart.
  • Serve with your choice of toppings!
A black oval shaped slow cooker bowl with chili inside, topped with cheddar cheese, avocado, and sour cream.

What are the best toppings for slow cooker chili?

The sky is the limit when it comes to toppings for chili. Personally, corn chips, avocado and cheese are my favorites!

  • Grated cheese
  • sour cream
  • avocado
  • corn chips
  • chopped parsley or cilantro
  • diced onion
  • green onion
  • jalapeño slices
  • lime wedges

What to serve with Chili

I consider beef chili to be a meal on its own. But I also like to serve it with cornbread sometimes, or any crust bread for dipping. A nice simple green salad would also be a good way to balance out the meal.

A bowl of slow cooker chili with avocado, cheddar cheese and avocado.

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Slow Cooker Chili

Prep 20 minutes
Cook 6 hours
Servings 12 Servings


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 lbs ground beef
  • 1 large onion diced
  • 2 bell peppers diced
  • 4 garlic cloves minced
  • 29 oz canned diced tomatoes with juice
  • 24 oz canned tomato sauce
  • ½ cup beef broth
  • 12 ounces beer
  • 2 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp cumin
  • 1 tbsps paprika
  • 1 tsp cocoa powder
  • 1 tbsps Worcester sauce
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 15 oz canned beans drained and rinsed. Can use kidney, black beans or pinto.


  • Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the ground beef and brown. When browned, transfer beef to slow cooker and return pan to heat. If there is excess fat, you can drain it off or add some of it to the slow cooker with the beef.
  • Add olive oil to pan. When hot, add onion and bell peppers, sprinkle with salt and sauté until soft, 3-5 minutes. Add garlic and sauté 30 seconds longer, until fragrant. Add onion mixture to slow cooker.
  • Stir in diced tomatoes, green chilis, tomato sauce, beef broth, beer, Worcestershire sauce chili powder, cumin, paprika, cocoa powder, and salt.
  • Cover with lid and cook on low heat for 5 – 6 hours. Taste and season with more salt and pepper if desired.
  • Stir in beans and allow to heat through for a few. minutes. Serve warm with desired toppings.
  • Leftovers can be refrigerated for 4 days or kept in the freezer for up to 4 months.


This recipe makes a pretty large amount of chili.  We usually freeze some to have for easy meals later.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 298kcal | Carbohydrates: 16g | Protein: 17g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 54mg | Sodium: 783mg | Potassium: 727mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 1637IU | Vitamin C: 37mg | Calcium: 72mg | Iron: 4mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Did you like this recipe?Please comment, rate and share! And don’t forget to tag me on Instagram @foxandbriar AND #foxandbriar so I can see what you made!

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you purchase the items I recommend through the links I provide, I get a small commission at no extra cost to you. For more info, please see my disclosure policy. Thanks for supporting Fox and Briar!

Hello! I’m Meghan.

I am so glad that you are here! I am the recipe developer, photographer, and writer here at my blog Fox and Briar. I am a passionate, self-taught home cook and believe that most things are better homemade and that good food doesn’t need to be complicated.

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  1. 5 stars
    Very yummy. Made a batch for hubby to take to work for lunch. He liked it a lot. Thanks for the recipe.

  2. 5 stars
    This is the best chilli recipe I have ever made. My family loved it ! The flavour is amazing .
    I added 2 pieces of dark chocolate as didn’t have cocoa powder.

  3. The addition of cocoa for complexity of flavor was a delightful surprise. I love the benefits of a slow cook. This slow cooker chili recipe is spot on. Thanks for sharing.