This Chili with Beans recipe will warm you up from the inside out. Top it with your favorite fixings then add a side of cornbread and it's a homestyle supper fit for any day of the week.
Easy Chili with Beans
This recipe for chili beans is one that will fill up the family from the pantry. Canned beans and tomato sauce are a pantry staple at our house and I pretty much always have ground beef in the freezer ready for quick meals. While the list may seem long, don't be intimidated. The ingredients are easy to find and you likely already have the seasonings on hand.
How to Make the Best Chili with Beans
- Ingredients to make homemade Chili with Beans: Ground beef, onion, poblano pepper, red bell pepper, jalapeno pepper, garlic, kidney beans, pinto or navy beans, olive oil, crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, beef stock, chili powder, salt, lemon pepper or black pepper, ground cumin, Mexican oregano, paprika or ancho chili powder and cilantro, sour cream, shredded cheddar cheese for serving.
- Kitchen gadgets you'll need: A large 6 quart Dutch oven or similar sized heavy bottomed pot, sharp knife and cutting board, measuring cups and spoons, a large spoon for stirring and a ladle and soup bowls for serving.
- Other seasonings you can add: A dash of ground cinnamon, chipotle chili powder, cocoa powder, cayenne, black pepper or crushed red pepper flakes.
- Chili goes well with cornbread so it's my go-to side dish. You could also serve it with tortilla chips, fritos, crackers or garlic bread. You really can't go wrong.
- This chili recipe can be used for a quick and easy taco salad, on chili dogs, or you could use it as a topping for baked potatoes as entrée garnished with cheddar cheese, sour cream, and green onions.
- You can substitute ground beef with ground turkey, chicken, or pork.
- You can also use all kidney beans or all pinto beans in this recipe.
- Can I make Chili with Beans in a slow cooker? Yes! To make it in the slow cooker, brown the beef on the stovetop, then combine all ingredients into a large slow cooker. Cook on high for 3-4 hours or on low for 6-8 hours.
- If you're not crazy about too much spice, you can omit the jalapeno or swap out green bell pepper for the poblano pepper. When chopping the jalapeno make sure the seeds are completely removed.
- Wear rubber gloves while cutting the jalapeno to avoid it getting into cuts or sensitive skin.
- Adding too much stock to the chili will make it very thin, so make sure to add only enough to give it ample liquid to simmer.
- How should I store the chili? Allow the chili with beans to cool and place into an airtight container and refrigerate for 3-4 days.
- To freeze, separate into serving size plastic containers or freezer bags and freeze for 2-3 months.
More Southern Style Chili Recipes to Make
These recipes are also chili inspired and run the full gamut in variations. More chili recipes you may also like to make:
- White Chicken Chili is a fabulous twist on this classic.
- Are you an Instant Pot fan? Checkout my recipe for Instant Pot Chili.
- Chili Spaghetti is a family pleasing fusion of pasta and chili.
- Buffalo Chicken Chili features the same flavors we love about buffalo chicken wings.
- All beef Texas Style Chili simmers until the chuck roast is fall apart tender.
- Chili Cheese Frito Pie works both as a weekday meal or game day eats.
- Keto Chili Mac from All Day I Dream About Food.
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Helpful Kitchen Items:
Chili with Beans
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion diced
- 1 medium red bell pepper seeded and diced
- 1 medium poblano pepper seeded and diced
- 1 medium jalapeno pepper seeded and diced
- 4 medium cloves garlic minced
- 2 lbs lean ground beef
- 1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
- 1 14 oz can tomato sauce
- 1 6 oz can tomato paste
- ¼ cup dark chili powder
- 2 teaspoon salt or garlic salt
- 1 ½ teaspoon lemon pepper
- 1 ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 ½ teaspoon smoked paprika OR ancho chili powder
- 1 ½ teaspoon Mexican oregano (or 1 teaspoon Italian)
- 1-2 cups beef stock plus additional as needed to thin
- 2 15 oz cans light red kidney beans drained
- 1 15 oz can pinto beans, black beans or navy beans drained
- Fresh chopped cilantro, jalapeno slices, sour cream, and shredded cheese for serving
- In a large Dutch oven or heavy bottomed pot, drizzled with olive oil, cook onion, red bell pepper, poblano and jalapeno peppers over medium high heat. Cook for 2-3 minutes until beginning to soften and brown, then add garlic. Cook for 1 minute.
- To the pot add ground beef, cooking over medium high for 6-8 minutes or until no pink remains. Drain excess fat from pot.
- To the pot add crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce and tomato paste, mix well. Stir in chili powder, salt, lemon pepper, cumin, paprika (or ancho chili powder) and oregano with 1 cup beef stock, mixing to combine.
- Bring to a gentle boil; reduce heat to low, cover and let simmer for 15 minutes stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.
- Add kidney and pintos and stir. Re-cover the pot and let simmer over medium-low for an additional 30-40 minutes or until the beans are soft. Check for thickness, adding more beef stock as needed to thin to your taste.
- Serve immediately topped with chopped cilantro, jalapeno slices, sour cream, and shredded cheese, if desired.
I’m making this tomorrow but I’m wondering if I could transfer to a crock pot, on low, for a few hours (maybe 3-4 hours)?
Yes, you can. From the narrative: Can I make Chili with Beans in a slow cooker? Yes! To make it in the slow cooker, brown the beef on the stovetop, then combine all ingredients into a large slow cooker. Cook on high for 3-4 hours or on low for 6-8 hours.
Thank you! Love your recipes.
It's my pleasure. I love making chili in a slow cooker, and please adapt the time depending on how quickly your appliance cooks. I have one slow cooker that would easily make this on high in 2-3 hours and one that would take longer.