Want to learn how to make homemade chili? This easy homemade chili recipe is full of satisfying meat, beans, and veggies, and will be the last chili recipe you’ll ever need. It makes a great weeknight dinner and meal prep and is only 235 calories (15g protein, 2g fiber, 5g carbs).
By now, you probably know I like to keep it simple with my recipes. Same goes for my homemade chili. Chili in itself is not a complicated dish to physically make, but it is complex when it comes to flavors.
Just the thought of a big bowl of spicy, hearty homemade chili warms me up, and makes me dream of those cold winter nights when I’d curl up in front of the TV with a bowl of piping hot chili and some freshly baked cornbread.
Just because you’re following a clean eating plan doesn’t mean chili is off limits to you! Follow this easy homemade chili recipe, which is made with whole, healthy chili ingredients. Serve it with these homemade corn tortillas and enjoy your completely clean easy weeknight dinner.
HOW TO COOK HOMEMADE CHILI WITHOUT BEANS
No beans about it, you can easily cook homemade chili without beans. Even though I love beans in my chili, if you prefer your chili meatier or just hate beans, you’re not alone. In fact, I make this chili without beans for Dustin since he hates beans.
P.S. If you’re looking for a good recipe for chili without beans, try my Texas Chili recipe, too.
WHAT’S THE BEST MEAT TO USE IN HOMEMADE CHILI?
Ever wondered what is the best meat to use in homemade chili? While making homemade chili isn’t rocket science, there’s definitely some science behind making truly great chili. This certainly applies when you’re choosing what meat to use in your chili recipe.
Traditionally, chili is made with either beef or pork. You can use ground meat or whole cuts, depending on your preferences. Here are some of my favorite meats to use in homemade chili:
- Ground Beef
- Beef Chuck
My usual choice is to go with 85/15 grass-fed organic ground beef for good flavor and still a decent price point. This will usually be the cheapest option, but that doesn’t mean it’s bad quality. If you’re wanting lots of flavor, but not too greasy, you can also add in some ground chuck for added fat and flavor.
Whichever kind of meat you use, what is important is browning it properly so it keeps all of its delicious meaty flavors no chili is complete without. My mom always told me the secret to tasty food is in browning the meat and she was right!
CAN YOU COOK HOMEMADE CHILI IN A CROCK POT?
Can you cook homemade chili in a Crock Pot? Yes, you sure can! I love using my slow cooker to make chili because it makes this super simple process EVEN simpler. Just like most Crock Pot recipes, Homemade Chili made in a Crock Pot is shockingly easy and very satisfying – which is pretty much easy comfort food at its best.
In order to make this homemade chili in a slow cooker, you’ll still need to brown the meat before adding to the Crock Pot — remember the secret rule about browning your meat we talked about earlier! Once that’s nicely browned, you can add everything but the beans to the crock pot and cook on High for 1-2 hours or on Low for 3-4 hours. When about 10 minutes from being ready to serve, add in the beans and stir together. Cook until the beans are heated through, and you’re good to go!
HOW TO STORE HOMEMADE CHILI
If you’ve got yourself a big skillet full of delicious homemade chili and you’re interested in knowing how long it will last in the fridge, the good news is it will last up to 5-6 days. To get your chili to last as long as possible in the fridge, make sure to properly store it in an air-tight container.
If you’d like to freeze your chili, you can easily freeze it and then just heat up the leftovers whenever you feel like diving into a bowl of this steamy, savory deliciousness right here. Just allow the chili to cool down before transferring to a freezer safe sealable plastic bag, and then place n the freezer.
To save space in your freezer, you can first freeze the chili in the bag flat on a baking sheet in order to stack the frozen bag for later. When ready to eat, just thaw in the fridge overnight and then reheat in the microwave for 2 minutes per serving or in a skillet until heated through.
MORE HEALTHY HOMEMADE CHILI RECIPES
TEXAS CHILI RECIPE
This easy Texas Chili Recipe, made without beans and using red wine is seriously one of my favorite chili recipes ever. Well, I am a Texan after all! Made with lean ground beef, crushed tomatoes, and greek yogurt, my Texas Chili Recipe has only 203 calories per serving.
BUTTERNUT SQUASH INSTANT POT CHILI
Enjoy this hearty, healthy and easy to make Butternut Squash Instant Pot Chili – ready in just 20 minutes! My Butternut Squash Instant Pot chili is vegan, gluten-free, paleo and clean eating approved. If you don’t own an instant pot, worry not! This instant pot recipe can easily be converted into a slow cooker recipe.
Want to learn how to make homemade chili? This easy homemade chili recipe is full of satisfying meat, beans, and veggies, and will be the last chili recipe you'll ever need.
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 lb organic, grass-fed ground beef 85/15
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 1 green bell pepper, diced
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp chili powder
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
- 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- 2 14.5 oz cans diced tomatoes
- 1 8 oz can tomato sauce
- 1 cup black olives, sliced
- 1 15 oz can no sodium added pinto beans, rinsed and drained
- cheddar cheese, optional garnish
- sliced green onions optional garnish
- full fat greek yogurt, optional garnish
In a large, deep skillet
heat olive oil over medium-high heat.
When oil is hot, add onion and cook until tender.
Add ground beef and cook until browned.
Add bell peppers, garlic, and all the spices, and stir to incorporate. Cook for 10 minutes, or until bell peppers begin to become tender.
Add diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, olives, pinto beans, and bring to a boil.
Reduce to a simmer over medium heat, cover, and cook for an additional 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Serve with a sprinkling of grated cheddar cheese, sliced green onions and a dollop of greek yogurt, if desired.
Nutrition information does not include optional toppings.
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19 thoughts on “How To Make Homemade Chili (Easy Weeknight Dinner Idea!)”
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I have lost count how many times I have made this! Each time I change a little something up. My family loves it, this is a meal I love to reheat for meal prep as well. It makes a lot for my small fam! Thanks for the great recipe!!
This chili is VERY GOOD. Ive had 2 bowls once it was completed. The ONLY thing different I did was add hafl cup of beef broth. This will be my ONLY chili recipe. Cant wit to teach the grandkids.
Doesn’t this need any water? Mine looks more like a casserole. LOL
Did you switch the recipe on this? Seems in a different order than before and ingredients a little different?
This chili recipe has 36 carbs per serving! Not 5. Yikes. I figured that out too late.
Totally need to make a video of this one.
Another HUGE success! I have tried so many of your recipes with such amazing results that I don’t hesitate to try a new recipe on guests (we had two couples over for this particular dinner). Oh the chili was SO good and it was my first time making it myself. As I always say, thank you for giving me the confidence to keep on cooking!
This is such music to my ears, Jules. I can’t tell you how happy I am to hear this 🙂
This was awesome. And easy and not time consuming 🙂
All music to my ears 🙂
Man, this looks incredible – so much better than the other stuff i googled which called for a ‘gallon of chilli sauce’!! It’s winter in south africa, and this would be PERFECT! I lived in the South for nearly 4 years, so I love your ‘accent’ online…Thanks! Zoe
Haha, thanks so much, Zoe! I hope you enjoy the chili 🙂
I’ve wanted to make a good homemade chili. You must’ve read my mind! Thanks for the dinner idea:)
Great minds think (and eat!) alike, Katherine 🙂
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