Monday, May 21, 2012

Crock Pot Chili

One of the best parts about cooking chili in the slow cooker is you can start with dry beans and frozen meat, but a delicious meal is ready come dinner time. It's much more affordable than cracking open cans and you control the seasonings used. I like to use a bagged 15 bean mix so I get variety of beans, peas, and lentils without buying a bunch of different kinds. This recipe can be used for any combination of meats and beans. Today I used some cubed beef chunks that I bought on sale. If you want to use ground meat I would suggest you brown it off before adding to the crockpot. You don't have to cook it through all the way. Just enough so it starts to crumble or you will end up with one big chunk in the pot come dinner time. I always season my meat and allow it to marinade then add additional seasoning once the food hits the crockpot. I don't have much room in my kitchen for a full array of cooking supplies, so the convenient seasoning packets you find in most stores are my favorite.

1lb of meat
1 1/2cu frozen corn kernels
1 small sweet onion, diced
1/2 red, yellow, and orange bell pepper, diced
1/2 20oz bag of 15 bean soup
2 10oz cans of tomatoes and chile, undrained

Add all of the ingredients to the crock pot and turn on to your desired time. I suggest using a slow cooker liner for easy cleanup. The beans DO NOT have to be soaked overnight and the meat doesn't have to be unfrozen. If you prefer your chili to be thick no additional liquid is needed. Add up to 1cu of liquid to the chili if you like it to be a bit thinner. You can always thicken it up by boiling off some of the liquid later.

Before cooking

After cooking

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