Best Slow Cooker Chilli Con Carne Recipe

This delicious and easy chilli con carne recipe is a real crowd-pleaser. It is perfect for both relaxed weekend dinners and busy weekdays alike and will keep well for 3 days in the fridge.

Do I have to brown off the mince and sweat the vegetables first?

There is an on-going argument over whether it makes any difference sweating off the carrot, onion and celery and browning the mince. I suggest you make it twice, try it both ways and then decide for yourself which you prefer.

What if I don’t like chilli to be too spicy?

You can adjust the spice level to your own taste. I like my chilli to be flavoursome rather than spicy-hot so tend to make it more on the milder side but feel free to adjust the chilli to your own taste.

Serve the chilli with a pile of tortilla chips, Mexican style dips, a handful of grated cheese or a pile of fluffy basmati rice.

What can I do with leftovers?

Leftovers can be made into burritos or tortilla wraps with a little cheese. Or serve piled on a jacket potato topped with a little sour cream and fresh chives.


  • Olive oil and/or a knob of butter
  • A medium onion, peeled and finely diced
  • A medium carrot, peeled and finely diced
  • A stick of celery, washed and finely diced (*optional)
  • A fresh tomato or two, de-seeded and chopped (*optional)
  • 1/3 red chilli, chopped (or to taste)
  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed or finely grated
  • 500g Minced beef 5% is best
  • 1 jar of passata – the big jars are best – you can have a flavoured one or a plain one
  • Generous shaking of Spicy Italian Seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoonful chilli powder (or more to taste)
  • A little Hendersons relish or Worcestershire sauce (*optional)
  • A red pepper (*optional) deseeded and finely diced
  • A tin of kidney beans in chilli sauce (or water) If using the ones in water, drain them first.


If you’re browning off the mince and sweating the vegetables first pop a little olive oil or a knob of butter in a pan over a low heat. 

Add the onions, carrots, celery if using and garlic and cook for 3-5 mins or so until they turn glossy and translucent

Turn the heat up slightly then add in the minced beef and cook for 5-10 mins until the mince is evenly brown all over, stirring regularly.

Add in the chilli powder to taste and the Spicy Italian seasoning and give it a few minutes to release the flavours

Transfer to the slow cooker dish (if you’re not browning the mince and sweating the vegetables just chuck it all in the slow cooker and give it a good stir!)

Add in the tomatoes, tomato passata, fresh chilli, tomato puree, red pepper, drained kidney beans and stir well. 

Add in the rest of the ingredients.

Double check the liquid level in the slow cooker, it should be just around the same level as the chilli. If necessary add in a little water or beef stock if it looks a bit on the dry side.

Replace the lid and cook for 3-4 hours on high, 4-6 hours on medium or 7 hours plus on low. It may not need as long as that so keep an eye on it.

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Sarah Cooper

Sarah Cooper

I love cooking! I’m hoping that by sharing some of my cooking wisdom, recipes and tips with you you’ll come to love cooking as much as I do! When I’m not cooking and writing, I love spending time with my family and my cat and reading crime novels

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