We have chili cookoff competitions in our house between me and my husband, Doug. His chili is different every time….sometimes spicy or sweet or smoky. He’s used chocolate, strawberries, sweet peppers, and who knows what else in his versions. Me? I like having a simple foundation and when the mood strikes, I can always kick it up. Don’t tell Doug, but the kids always go back for seconds for this easy version 🙂

Slow Cooker Three Bean Chili

Slow Cooker Three Bean Chili


  • 1–1/2 lbs ground beef or turkey
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp garlic, minced
  • 1 green or red bell pepper, seeded & chopped
  • 1 (14.5-oz) can chili beans in sauce
  • 1 (14.5-oz) can black beans, drained
  • 1 (14.5-oz) can pinto beans, drained
  • 1 (14.5-oz) can petite diced tomatoes
  • 1 (29-oz) can tomato sauce (or 2 14.5-oz cans)
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp chipotle chili powder (in the spice section)
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp ground cayenne
  • Salt, to taste
  • Shredded cheese (optional garnish)
  • Sliced jalapeños (optional garnish)
  • Sour cream (optional garnish)
  • Hot sauce (optional garnish)


Brown the ground beef or turkey in large skillet with the onion, garlic, and green pepper over medium heat until the meat is fully cooked. Drain off any excess oil and put the mixture into your slow cooker. Add the remaining ingredients and stir until mixed. Set the slow cooker on low and cook for 4–5 hours. Top with shredded cheese, jalapeños, sour cream, and hot sauce, if desired.