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Slow Cooker Chili Recipe

Slow Cooker Chili Recipe

As a registered dietitian who writes often about the benefits of healthy eating, Elaine Magee appreciates what a slow cooker can do to lean meats. Fat, after all, is what gives most high-end cuts of meat their tenderness and taste. But in a slow cooker, even an extremely lean cut like a London broil (which is used in this delicious chili) loses all its toughness. There are also personal reasons why she's a devotee. On the days when she's slow-cooking, she says, "I have a much more relaxed and leisurely afternoon. I don't have to panic -- what am I going to make for dinner? That question's answered. Plus, there's that smell when you walk in the kitchen, the something-good-is-cooking smell." Elaine's Grand-prize Slow-cooker Chili is modeled after a recipe that won the grand prize at the State Fair of Texas many years ago. If you're feeding a crowd, or just like leftovers, she says, you may want to double the recipe, as this serves a family of four.


  • 2 teaspoons canola oil
  • 1 pound London broil or top round steak, trimmed of fat and cut into 1/4-inch cubes
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 14 1/2-ounce can diced tomatoes (preferably Mexican style), with liquid
  • 1 cup light or nonalcoholic beer, or water
  • 1/3 to 1/2 jalapeno chili, halved, seeded,and finely chopped (optional)
  • 1 15-ounce can kidney beans (or pinto beans), drained and rinsed


  1. Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a large, nonstick frying pan or skillet. Add the beef, onion, and garlic and cook until browned, stirring occasionally (about 8 minutes).
  2. Spoon the beef mixture into the slow cooker. Add the remaining ingredients and stir to combine. Cover the slow cooker and cook on low for 8 to 10 hours.
  3. Serve sprinkled with minced onion and grated cheese if desired. Makes 4 servings.