Granddad’s Slow Cooker Chili


Labor Day weekend started off rainy and chilly here in the Northeast and I figured it was a good time to break out the slow cooker and cook up a batch of chili.  I am not a very big fan of TexMex food but I am a lover of chili.  When I was a younger man I loved very hot very spicy chili, however being a man of a certain age I can no longer eat it overly spicy this recipe is more of a medium with a hint of heat. If you would like it with more heat just adjust the seasonings for more spice.

This was actually the first time I made this chili in the new slow cooker we got recently to replace out old one that we broke the lid on. Our new one is a Cook’s Essentials Pressure Cooker that is a multi function cooker.  As you will see this was the only thing i used to cook the chili so it is actually a one pot meal. Before this I was one of those guys that had an old beat up stock pot that I used only for chili. Unfortunately time took its toll one the chili pot and I had to throw it away. To be honest I had convinced myself that chili would not be as good cooked in anything else but lo and behold the pressure cooker, used as a slow cooker, worked wonderfully.

So let’s get into it. I don’t use a lot of spices only 1 teaspoon each of cayenne, cummin, chili powder and nutmeg and 2 Tablespoons of light brown sugar. The produce I use is 1 medium yellow onion, 2 cloves of garlic and a red onion. Other than that all you need is 1 pound ground beef, 2 cans of dark red beans, 1 medium can each of tomato paste, tomato sauce and diced tomatoes (I like the fire roasted diced tomatoes).

Now in the picture is another one of my new favorite toys, my ceramic knife. This is now my go to knife. Starting with the yellow onion I do a rough chop on it because I like the big pieces of onion but if you prefer you could do a fine chop or even dice it. Then I press the 2 cloves of garlic. I know a lot of people don’t like to press garlic because first you have to peel it then once you press it most of the garlic ends up staying in the press, well Karen, my wife, got me a garlic press that solves all those issues. It’s the Dreamfarm Garject. It is a self-cleaning press with a peel eject you place the clove peel and all in the press and it has a plastic blade that scrapes the garlic off the press and a button to eject the peel once done. I highly recommend it.

Now as I said my slow cooker is a multifunction cooker so I set it to brown and added my chopped onions and pressed garlic. Please do not forget to add you salt and pepper at this point.

Keep an eye on it let the onions begin to sweat and make sure the garlic does not burn. Just as the garlic begins to turn a nice golden color not brown add the ground beef and once again hit it with salt and pepper. Keep stirring it at this point so the garlic does not burn. Once the beef is browned and the spices and continue to stir to get everything incorporated. Then add tomato sauce, paste, and diced tomatoes and mix for a few minutes.

Then put the lid on and lower the temp to the slow cook setting and let it go for 4 hours, stirring occasionally.

after 4 hours open and drain the 2 cans of dark red beans and add them to the chili and stir one more time. Recover and keep on the slow cook setting for one more hour.

After the hour plate and serve. I know you are thinking what about the red onion. Well that is the secret weapon with this chili. I only use it to top the chili. You could also add cheese and sour cream but the last topper is red onion once you have the red onion you wont be able to have chili without it.


As a side I like sourdough bread, but not sliced. We get a round of sourdough and just rip of big chunks to sop up the chili.


1 Lb ground beef

1 teaspoon cayenne

1 teaspoon chili powder

1 teaspoon cummin

1 teaspoon nutmeg

2 Tablespoons light brown sugar

1 medium can tomato sauce

1 medium can tomato paste

1 medium can diced tomatoes

2 cans dark red kidney beans.



One Comment Add yours

  1. Jerry Ginn says:


    Potatos are important for Sunday dinners. Mashed, baked, boiled. How about something new.


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