Slow Cooker Taco Chili is an easy homemade meal to make on a cold day. Ground beef, two types of beans, corn, tomatoes and taco seasoning make this chili chunky, hearty, and flavorful.
Slow cooker chili is an easy, make-ahead meal. Start your slow cooker in the morning, and you'll have a hearty and filling taco chili ready for dinner.
Flavored with taco seasoning, this recipe is a southwest twist on my classic slow cooker chili recipe. Make your taco chili as spicy as you want by using mild or hot taco seasoning.
Serve your chili with a dollop of sour cream, a handful of shredded cheddar cheese, and a side of skillet cornbread for the perfect meal.
Ingredients and substitutions
Ground beef can be substituted with ground turkey or chicken for a lower calorie chili.
For a thinner chili sauce, substitute one of the cans of diced tomatoes with tomato sauce. As written, this chili turns out chunky and thick.
Any canned beans can be used in this recipe - kidney beans are a great alternative.
Taco seasoning vs. chili seasoning
For this recipe, you'lll need a packet of store bought taco seasoning, or two tablespoons of your own homemade taco seasoning.
Traditional chili seasoning uses a lot of the same spices as taco seasoning, like chili powder, cumin, cayenne pepper, and paprika.
The main difference between the two is that chili seasoning usually contains more chili powder, and taco seasoning contains more cumin. Otherwise, the flavors are very similar.
Want to make your chili hotter? Add a dash of cayenne pepper and red pepper flakes (start with ¼ teaspoon of each) to your chili while cooking.
Taco chili toppings
- Sour cream
- Sharp cheddar cheese
- Crushed corn chips
- Chopped green or red onions
- Pico de gallo
- A squeeze of lime juice
- Chopped cilantro or parsley
Freezing leftover chili
Chili is an excellent make-ahead meal, and freezes well. Allow your cooked chili to cool to room temperature, then portion into freezer-safe bags or containers with a tight seal.
Freeze for up to four months or more, if stored properly.
If frozen, transfer frozen chili to the refrigerator to thaw overnight.
Pour chili into a saucepan, cover, and warm over medium heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Slow Cooker Taco Chili
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 large onion chopped
- 30 ounces canned diced tomatoes
- 15 ounces canned black beans drained and rinsed
- 15 ounces canned pinto beans drained and rinsed
- 8 ounces canned chopped green chiles
- 2 cups corn canned or frozen
- 1 packet taco seasoning or 2 tablespoons of homemade taco seasoning
- Over medium heat, crumble ground beef into a hot skillet and cook until browned.
- Add cooked ground beef to your slow cooker. Add all of your remaining ingredients and stir to combine.
- Cook on low heat 8-9 hours, or on high for 4 -5 hours. Stir sparingly (two times during the last half of cooking will suffice).
- If you don't have a slow cooker, you can also make chili in a dutch oven on the stove top. Cook your ground beef over medium heat, then add the remaining ingredients and bring to a simmer. Cover and turn heat to low, cooking for 2 hours, stirring occasionally.
- Chili flavor develops as it sits, and can be made a day or two prior to enjoying. Chili makes a great leftover and will keep for several days in the refrigerator or up to four months if stored properly in the freezer.