Slow Cooker Beef Chilli

Adding beef onion and red capsicum to the slow cooker for beef chilli

Ever since I scored a $3 slow cooker at a garage sale last year, I’ve been a bit slack at using it. I figured making chilli was probably a pretty safe first timer thing to try and make (I’m not counting a gooey botched batch of rice). As I usually do, I skim the internet for ideas or tips and then make it up as I go. Every slow cooker recipe said to brown the beef and onions first, so I made sure I did that.


Slow Cooker Beef Chilli


I used about 500 grams of minced beef for this recipe. I think. I wasn’t sure how that would go as my slow cooker isn’t a particularly large one. While there are only two of us in this household, I do actually prefer to cook larger meals and freeze extras for lazy days. I am queen of lazy food.


Browning the minced beef for beef chilli in the slow cooker


Don’t we have such a glamorous, orange kitchen bench? It’s glorious. The joy of old rental houses. I managed to make Ben cut the onions for me as I can react really badly to onions.


Chopping the onions for beef chilli in the slow cooker


I had most of a red capsicum in the fridge that needed to be used, so I added that into the slow cooker when the beef and onions had been cooked.


Adding beef onion and red capsicum to the slow cooker for beef chilli


I like carrots. A lot. So I decided on putting four in the chilli. It would be pretty easy to omit the minced beef from all of this and make a vegetarian version.


Chopping carrots for slow cooker beef chilli


I put in two (rinsed) cans of red kidney beans and one can of diced tomatoes.


Tinned beans and tomato for slow cooker beef chilli


I also had some tomatoes in the crisper that were about to go off, so I chopped them up and added them, along with some frozen peas and corn.


Tomato for slow cooker beef chilli


For flavour, I put in parsely and chilli powder. This is where I was really making it up. I mixed these with some water and added them. As you’ll see below, this thinking was really wrong, but what I was thinking at the time was that if it’s on for ages, it will boil dry, so I should add extra liquids.


Parsley and Chilli powder


I also added in one chopped jalapeno, seeds and all. Just because I had them.


After about 8 hours it was ready. I cooked it mostly on high, but again, made a newbie boo-boo when I realised I had actually set the slow cooker to auto and not high. Whoops. Pay attention to stuff…geez…


I kept checking and stirring it, which apparently slows it down. I did see some reference (either in the manual or on Pinterest, who knows) about how every time you open the lid, it adds 10-15 mins to the cooking time. Woah. It really is set and forget. Which is just plain weird to me. It didn’t seem to be very spicy, so I made a batch of my spicy sauce and stirred that through. I think it made about 6 bags. These are regular ziplock sandwich sized bags.


Slow Cooker Beef Chilli in freezer bags


What I would do differently next time:


Mrs BCs Slow Cooker Tip


Well, basically I got a great tip from food blogger Lisa: double the spices and halve the liquid. Great advice and it completely made sense given what I put in and how it came out. I reheated a bag of it for lunch one day at work and it was very goopey.


What did you first try in your slow cooker? Do you have any tips for a good slow cooker beef chilli?


3 Replies to “Slow Cooker Beef Chilli”

  1. Yum! I love chilli con carne, but never thought of adapting our recipe for the slow cooker. We do have a vegetarian beans and rice recipe that is my go to slow cooker meal, I especially love that we can have a complete meal done and only one dish to clean.

    1. Vanessa Smith says: Reply

      I’ve yet to try much but I love the idea of less washing up!

  2. Three dollars! What a bargain! I had one when the kids were little and I loved it. They hated everything I cooked in it unfortunately. I only recently threw it out after twenty odd years. Now I want a fast cooker 🙂

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