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Chili con Carne is an American classic and nothing is more comforting on a cool Fall or Winter day than a nice, big, bowl of chili. This slow cooker recipe is easy to make, and you can prepare it the night before or in the morning. Let it cook all day long, ready for your family as soon as they get home.

Chili con Carne in a white bowl topped with sour cream and green onions.
Chili is a classic, hardy meal and a great way to use your slow cooker.

🌶 What makes this recipe special?

Texas is known for its chili, but that doesn’t mean the rest of the world can’t make a great bowl. This is a classic chili recipe with a few tricks to make it the best ever. It tastes great and is made so you can set it in your slow cooker; ready when you get home from work or a day on the town.

My recipe uses convenient and simple chili ingredients and seasonings but has a wonderful homemade flavor. A side of Sweet Cornbread would go great with this chili. You might also like our easy taco soup recipe or if you are looking for a creamier dumpling soup, check out this Knoephla soup recipe. Whatever you cook tonight, make sure to treat yourself a bit!

🫘 Ingredients

We are using quite a few seasonings in this recipe and a few different kinds of canned beans and canned tomatoes. Check it out. 

Slow Cooker Chili ingredients.
Onion, Garlic, Tomatoes (petite diced, crushed, and paste), beans (red and kidney), ground pork, soy sauce, ground beef, beef broth, olive oil, chili powder, cumin, salt, paprika, brown sugar, pepper, and cayenne.
  • Olive oil
  • Ground Meat
  • Onions
  • Garlic
  • So many seasonings
  • Tomato paste, crushed tomatoes, and diced petite tomatoes
  • Beef Broth
  • Two kinds of beans
  • Soy Sauce
  • Worcestershire sauce

See the recipe card for quantities.

🍲 Instructions

Our Tex Mex chili con carne recipe is super simple. First, cook onions and garlic until glassy. Add our ground meat and cook until brown and crumble.

The rest is as easy as putting in our crockpot or slow cooker on low for 8 hours or high for four. Just that simple.

Unless the instructions say otherwise, there is no reason to drain any of the ingredients. Dump everything in.

Process for making chili.
First, brown meats with onion and garlic. Add all ingredients in slow cooker. Cook for several hours on low.

🤷 Substitutions and variations

There really are so many ways that this can be changed up to suit your taste

  • Meat – I use ground beef and pork, but almost any meat could be used in this recipe.
  • Seasonings – Chili powder and cumin are what I would consider the most important in my mix. Everything else is a bit of experimentation that can help make this recipe your own. 
  • Vegetarian – I have made this without meat and a mix of Impossible burger and egg plant. It worked great!
  • Umami – I use Soy sauce and Worcestershire. These can be omitted. Fish sauce can work great.
  • Beans – Some people swear by no bean chili. I think it is essential. That said, if you must, you can leave the beans out. You could also change out the

🥑 Chili Toppings

While chili can be a simple meal, you can also liven it up with different topping options. Consider the following for things to serve on top of, or alongside, your chili con carne.

  • Sour Cream
  • Avocado
  • Cheese
  • Bacon bits
  • Tortilla Chips
  • Crackers
  • Bread
  • Cornbread

The options are endless,

📦 Storage

This recipe will hold up in the refrigerator for several days. Also, you can freeze this recipe and it stores very well! 

🎓 History tidbit

Chili is such a great recipe and has a vast connection with the Americas. Chilis are native to the Americas, and our chili has a history connected to the taco’s history.

The earliest description of chili comes from Houston in the early 1800s, and a man named J.C. Cooper documented his trip and described the dish in written form.

❓ FAQ 

What does Chili Con Carne mean?

‘Con Carne’ literally translates to ‘with meat’, so the name means ‘chili with meat’. 

What is the difference between chili and chili con carne

Usually, they are used interchangeably, and Chili con Carne is just chili. That said, you could have chili without meat or vegetarian chili. 

Can you freeze Chili?

Usually, chili is a dish that stands up well to freezing! Yes. Freeze away.

📝 Tips and tricks

  • Cook the meat the night before and mix everything in the crock pot. Then, the next morning, put it on low and let it cook all day!
  • Add some more cayenne or some diced fresh peppers to add some extra spice.
  • Change up the beans for different flavors.
Bowl of chili on a white table with crackers and sour cream.
Try this chili recipe today!

🛠 Products used in this recipe

😋 Did you make this recipe?

That is awesome, and thank you so much for giving this Chili Con Carne recipe a try. If you could leave a rating in the comment area below, it would be greatly appreciated. This lets me know how I am doing and helps others decide if they want to make this recipe. Most of all, thanks for visiting Ramshackle Pantry.

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Chili con Carne in a white bowl topped with sour cream and green onions.

Slow Cooker Chili Con Carne

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 3 from 1 review
  • Author: Ben
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 7 hours
  • Total Time: 7 hours 20 minutes
  • Yield: 10 servings 1x
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Slow Cooker
  • Cuisine: Tex Mex
Save Recipe


Chile con Carne is such a classic dish and cooking it in your slow cooker is a great way to make your supper a super easy affair. Cook the meat the night before or in the morning and just let it sit all day. Not only is it easy, but it is also a super tasty meal! 


Units Scale
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound 80/20 lean ground beef
  • 1 pound ground pork
  • 2 medium yellow onions, chopped
  • 6 minced garlic cloves
  • 4 Tablespoons chili powder
  • 3 Tablespoons ground cumin
  • 1 Tablespoons salt
  • 1 Tablespoons ground black pepper
  • 1 6 ounce can tomato paste
  • 1 28ounce can of crushed tomatoes
  • 1 28ounce can of diced petite tomatoes
  • 32 ounces Beef Broth
  • 1 15 ounce cans Chili Beans mild chili sauce, not drained
  • 1 16 ounce can kidney beans
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne powder


  1. Add olive oil to large pan and bring to medium heat.
  2. Add onions and garlic. Cook until glassy.
  3. Add ground beef and ground pork.
  4. Cook until done and use a spatula to crumble meat
  5. Add to crock pot
  6. Add the rest of ingredients to crock-pot.
  7. Cook on low for 6-8 hours or high for four hours.
  8. Serve


  • Cook the meat the night before and mix everything in the crock pot. Then, the next morning, put it on low and let it cook all day!
  • Add some more cayenne or some diced fresh peppers to add some extra spice.
  • Change up the beans for different flavors.
  • The unscaled recipe makes 3 ¾ quarts of chili.

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  1. Yeah, sounds great. But the recipe, as given, sounds like it’s for a gallon sized crock pot.
    Hello, note what size (quarts, whatever) so one can adjust your receipt.
    Hell, it’s s 2 gallons for just the included recipe for beef broth, ya know.
    Let us know the crock pot size initially and we can adjust. We can do the math. I realize significant portion of the Americans cannot multiply 2X3. But, give the cooks some chance.

    Yeah, yeah, the answer is 6. But, did you actually seek it? Sad!

    1. The recipe says there are 10 servings of 1 ½ cups. A standard crockpot is generally 5-6 quarts. I include a 7 qt crockpot link for the product I used.

      > 2 gallons for just the included recipe for beef broth

      No. The recipe, as given is 32 ounces of beef broth. If you scale the recipe up, I hope you understand that the container cooking them needs to be scaled up, as well.

      I just don’t think this is that hard? That said, I will explicitly add that it makes 15 cups or 3.75 quarts.

      I give this comment 2 stars.