Slow Cooker Texas Style Chili Recipe - Pinch of Yum
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Slow Cooker Texas Style Chili

5 reviews / 5 average

This shredded beef Texas chili is rich and hearty, made with 8 simple ingredients! Just saucy chunks of tender beef that shreds apart with the lightest pull of a fork. YUM.

Why I Love This Chili

Is there any better feeling than walking into your house, when it’s dark (already) at 5pm, and smelling the juicy, spicy, richness of Texas-style chili in the slow cooker?

This chili is rich and hearty, simple and uncluttered. No beans, no veggie chunks – just saucy chunks of juicy, tender beef that shreds apart with the lightest pull of a fork.

My friend Ang made this recipe for us years ago, and we’ve always laughed about this recipe that she used because the 2010 Food Network original that she was working from has a full 3/4 cup of chili powder in it.

We are not doing the 3/4 cup of chili powder thing, but I did using that old, nostalgic-to-me recipe to build this version.

The chili is beef, savory, rich and dark, but it’s also mild enough that my two littles love it, especially when dolloped with sour cream, which is one of their favorite food groups.

Final pro-tip: I’ve made this into a casserole on more than one occasion, topped with cornbread buttermilk biscuits, and I’ll get that recipe onto the internet very soon.

How To Make This Slow Cooker Texas Chili


Brown the beef.

Coat the beef with the salt; sear it in a hot skillet and brown the beef. Transfer to the slow cooker.

Browning beef in a dutch oven.


Cook the onion and garlic.

Brown them right in all that rendered fat from the beef. Flavor! Yummy!

Cooking onions and garlic in a dutch oven.


Add spices, tomatoes, and chiles.

Get all your other stuff in the pan and let it cook for a few minutes. Again, flavor!

Cooking spices, tomatoes, and chilis in a dutch oven with onion and garlic.


Move to the slow cooker.

At this point I like to move it over to the slow cooker to let it hang out on low for 6-7 hours.

Stirring ingredients together with the beef in a slow cooker.


Shred the beef.

I usually just pop the forks right in there and pull the meat apart gently to get big, tender chunks.

Shredding beef in a slow cooker with two forks.


You’re Done! Yum!

Shred and serve with cheddar cheese, cornbread, sour cream, and green onions!

A bowl of Texas chili with sour cream, cheese, and green onions.

Watch How To Make This Chili

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A picture of Slow Cooker Texas Style Chili

Slow Cooker Texas Style Chili

  • Author: Lindsay
  • Total Time: 8 hours 15 minutes
  • Yield: 56 servings 1x


This shredded beef Texas chili is rich and hearty, made with 8 simple ingredients! Just saucy chunks of tender beef that shreds apart with the lightest pull of a fork!


Units Scale

Slow Cooker Texas Style Chili:

  • 12 tablespoons avocado or vegetable oil
  • 2 1/2 to 3 pounds beef chuck roast, fat trimmed, cut into 3-inch cubes
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons salt (1 teaspoon per pound of meat, more to taste)
  • 1 yellow onion, finely diced
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1/4 cup chili powder
  • two 4.5-ounce cans green chiles
  • one 14-ounce can crushed fire roasted tomatoes


  • Green onions
  • Sour cream
  • Cheddar cheese
  • Chips or cornbread


  1. Prep everything: Chop, measure, get everything all set up first.
  2. Brown the beef: Heat the oil in a large Dutch oven over high heat. Toss the cut beef chunks with salt. Add the beef to the pot and let it cook, undisturbed, for a few minutes on each side until it gets nice and browned. You may need to do this batches depending on the size of your pan. Remove beef chunks and transfer to the slow cooker.
  3. Saute onions and garlic: Add onions and garlic (and a bit more oil if needed); sauté until golden and softened. This process should lift a lot of yummy browned bits from the bottom of the pan.
  4. Add spices: Add the brown sugar and spices; sauté for 3-5 minutes until nice and fragrant.
  5. Add tomatoes and chiles: Add green chiles and crushed tomatoes; simmer for 3-5 minutes until bubbly and delicious. 
  6. Cook low and slow: Pour tomato mixture into the slow cooker over the beef chunks; gently nudge them around so they are surrounded in the sauce. Cook on high for 4-ish hours or low for 8 hours.
  7. Serve: Shred the beef into big tender chunks (you should be able to do this directly in the slow cooker) and season with more salt to taste. Serve with sour cream, cheddar, green onions, and cornbread.


Chili Powder: Every chili powder tastes a little different as they all use their own unique blend of spices. I like the Simply Organic chili powder, but have enjoyed this with honestly all of the chili powders I’ve used during testing. I think as long as your chili powder smells good and tastes good to you, it’ll be spot on.

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 8 hours
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Slow Cooker
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: texas style chili, chili recipe, beef chili recipe, slow cooker chili, slow cooker dinner recipe

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Frequently Asked Questions For Texas Chili

What is Texas chili?

Regular beef chili uses ground beef, sometimes beans, and often extra veggies (like this one – so good). But Texas chili is shredded beef chili that’s traditionally made with just beef, chiles, and spices. No beans, no chunks of extra veggies. Traditionally it’s made with no tomatoes – the dried chiles and the spices are what makes the saucy base of it. I am using a can of tomatoes here, plus canned chiles instead of dried ones, so this is more of a Texas-style chili vs. a full blown Texas chili.

Can I use the Instant Pot?

Yes, it will work. I’ve done it and cooked on high pressure for about 60-70 minutes. But I much preferred this in the slow cooker. It just thickens differently, tenderizes the meat differently, and just generally works better.

Can I cook this in the oven?

Yes, you could bake this in a pot (ideally a Dutch oven), add a cup of water, and bake for about 3 hours at 300 degrees, with the lid slightly ajar. I haven’t done this personally, but judging by the other recipes out there, this should work! (If you try it, leave a comment to let us know!)

Can you make this vegetarian / meatless?

Here’s a recipe for my favorite vegetarian chili!

Can you freeze this?

Yes! You can freeze this before or after cooking.

Can you make this without browning the beef and the veggies first?

Yes. I’ve done it and it’s still delicious! I think for max flavor, the browning is ideal. But if you don’t have time, just toss it in the slow cooker and go!

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Recipe rating


  1. Pinch of Yum Logo

    This sounds delicious!! Can’t wait to try it. I love your new “Why I love this recipe” and picture. Such a lovely addition! Thanks for all you do.

  2. Pinch of Yum Logo

    The rich and hearty flavors, combined with the simplicity of the ingredients makes this dish an instant favorite in anyone’s household. Your tips on browning the beef and the idea of serving it with sour cream and cheddar cheese were spot-on. It was a hit even with the little ones at home! I also appreciate the background story about your friend Ang and the nostalgic touch it adds to the recipe. Some people virtually can’t wait to try it as a casserole topped with cornbread buttermilk biscuits as you suggested. I’m confident about that. Thank you for sharing this delicious and comforting recipe – it’s definitely a keeper for those chilly evenings! Keep up the fantastic work on your blog., Lindsay! 🙂


  3. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Thanks for the mouthwatering Slow Cooker Texas Style Chili recipe! The beef is incredibly tender, and the flavors are spot-on. The rich, hearty sauce is perfection. Easy-to-follow steps, satisfying results. Consider adding alternative toppings like avocado or hot sauce for extra variety. Looking forward to more delicious recipes!

  4. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Made this today and it turned out perfectly, wouldn’t change a thing! Used half Penzey’s hot and half Penzey’s regular chili powder. I had to add some water when cooking the spices as they were sticking to the pan, but I think that made it even better!

  5. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Hi there, Lindsay. I just had to pause and express my appreciation for this Slow Cooker Texas Style Chili recipe. The simplicity of the ingredients and the ease of preparation really appealed to me. I particularly like how the beef becomes so tender and flavorful, easily shredding with just a fork. But that bowl does need a tid bit more sour cream if I can add my humble 2 cents in there. (smile). It’s wonderful to find a recipe that’s both uncluttered yet rich and hearty. Thank you for sharing this delightful and comforting dish, perfect for these cooler evenings. 🙂

  6. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Made this tonight and it was so yummy. I used stew meat instead since the chuck roasts were $35! I cut acorn squash in half and roasted them – then filled with chili topped with cheese and under the broiler for a few minutes. Sooooo good. Thank you!

  7. Pinch of Yum Logo

    I just made this last night, and it was so good. I had beef stew meat in my fridge and didn’t know what to do with it, and this recipe came right on time into my inbox. The whole family loved it. We will be making this again… Thanks!

  8. Pinch of Yum Logo

    This is CRAZY delicious and super easy! I cooked it for 35 mins on high in an instant pot. Meat was fall-apart tender. Honestly I have never been disappointed with one single recipe by Pinch of Yum, and I have made MANY of them. Your weekly recipe emails form the backbone of my meal planning. THANK YOU, Lindsay!

  9. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Anne Marie

    This is scrumptious! Gives me a warm-belly feeling. I added a zucchini and two green peppers at the tomato stage, then a can of black beans and some chopped spinach at the end. SO GOOD! Just the right amount of heat 🙂

  10. Pinch of Yum Logo

    How do you calculate the nutritional facts for your recipe?

    It would be nice to have the portion volume in Grams rather than just “5-6” portions.

    The recipe was very good. Will definitely make it again!

  11. Pinch of Yum Logo

    This was SO good! Easy & delicious! Followed directions but added 4 diced jarred Calabrian peppers I had. Cooked in crock pot on high for 2hrs & then low for 6. Served w diced avocado, sour cream, shredded colby jack & green onions. Also a side of roasted butternut squash as it’s fall & I was craving! This was a delicious dinner & we all loved it!

  12. Pinch of Yum Logo

    This came out SO good! Topped with some cheddar and sour cream and it was the perfect dinner for a cold night.