Slow cooker chili recipes that are both hearty and simple

Slow cooker chili recipes that are both hearty and simple

by Natalie L 22 Feb 2020

Love spicy and tasty dishes? It's hard to beat a nice warm bowl of chili on a rainy day! Rather than getting your fix from a can, why not whip out your trusty ol' slow-cooker and bask in some home-made goodness instead?


Crock-pot pineapple chili


  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 20oz canned pineapple
  • 28oz canned seasoned diced tomatoes
  • 15oz canned black beans (rinsed and drained)
  • 6oz canned tomato paste
  • 1.5 tbsp chili powder
  • 4 tbsp ground cumin
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 20oz Italian turkey sausage
  • Shredded reduced-fat cheese, reduced-fat sour cream and hot sauce for serving (as desired)



  1. Add the red lentils and 3 cups of water to a pot. Boil the lentils and let them simmer for 20 minutes. Then, transfer the lentils to a large bowl after draining them. Add the marinara sauce to the lentils and mix them well.
  2. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  3. Add the cashew nuts, tofu, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, salt, basil, oregano and garlic powder into a food processor. Process these ingredients together until they appear well-combined. 
  4. Spread 1 cup of marinara sauce around the base of a lasagna pan. Then, add 4-5 sheets of uncooked lasagna noodles above the sauce. Stack the ricotta from step 3 above the lasagna noodles, before topping with half of the total portion of baby spinach.
  5. Repeat step 4 to create 2 stacked layers of the lasagna. Then, top it off with 4-5 more lasagna noodles and the rest of the sauce.
  6. Cover the assembled lasagna with a sheet of aluminium foil and bake for 1 hour. Cool for 15 minutes before serving.
  7. If you wish to add mozzarella cheese to the lasagna, simply remove the lasagna from the oven about 40 minutes through baking and add the cheese to the top of the lasagna. Then, return it to the oven to cook for another 20 minutes.



Slow cooker chili-mac


For the chili:

  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 15oz canned light red kidney beans (drained and rinsed)
  • 28oz canned diced tomatoes
  • 15oz tomato sauce
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp ancho chili powder
  • 1 tsp chipotle chili powder
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp dried cilantro


For the pasta:

  • 12oz dried elbow noodles


For the cheese Sauce:

  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 1 ½  cups milk
  • 1 cup shredded colby jack/ cheddar jack cheese



  1. Cook the ground turkey on a skillet, over medium heat.
  2. Transfer the turkey to a slow cooker.
  3. Add the beans, tomato, tomato sauce and seasoning to the slow cooker. Then, mix them and ensure that the ingredients are well-combined.
  4. Cook on high for 3-4 hours or low for 6-8 hours.
  5. Cook the pasta before adding it to the slow cooker.
  6. Melt some butter over a saucepan on medium to high heat. Then, whisk in flour and add milk while whisking. Always ensure a smooth mixture. Continue to whisk the sauce for 3-4 minutes, until it thickens up slightly. Add in the cheese and mix until smooth.
  7. Add the mixture from 6 into the slow cooker and mix everything until well-combined.
  8. Allow the mixture to sit for around 20 minutes on low-warm heat before serving.


Crock-pot chicken enchilada chili


  • 10oz enchilada sauce
  • 14.5oz diced tomatoes with green chili
  • 15oz chili beans in chili sauce
  • 15oz black beans (drained and rinsed)
  • 15oz corn 
  • 700g boneless skinless chicken breasts 
  • 2 cups chicken stock/ broth
  • 8oz cream cheese 


For the seasoning:

  • 1/tsp cumin
  • 3/4  tsp  paprika
  • 1  tsp  seasoned salt
  • 1/4  tsp  pepper
  • 1 ½ tbsp chili powder
  • Other option toppings: sour cream, freshly grated cheddar cheese, avocado, fresh lime, fresh cilantro



  1. Add enchilada sauce, undrained tomatoes, chili beans, black beans, corn and uncooked chicken breast into the crockpot.
  2. Add the chicken stock and other seasonings. Stir until well-mixed.
  3. Cook on high for 3-5 hours or low for 5-8 hours.
  4. Remove the chicken from the crockpot and shred it.
  5. Cut the cream cheese into small cubes and add it to the crockpot. Stir well and increase the temperature to high. After 5-10 minutes, whisk the cream cheese to melt it.
  6. Place the shredded chicken back into the crockpot and stir well. Continue to cook the mixture on high until the cream cheese has completely melted.
  7. Add on toppings as desired, before serving the dish.


Chili is just as much at home with solo dinners as it is with party gatherings, and it's almost guaranteed to be a home-run! Having it with rice or cornbread are perhaps the two of the most popular ways of enjoying this hearty dish but hey, it's just as good on its own!