365 Days of Slow Cooking: Recipe for Slow Cooker Chili With Pinto Beans and Sausage
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Thursday, November 17, 2011

Recipe for Slow Cooker Chili With Pinto Beans and Sausage

Recipe for Slow Cooker Chili With Pinto Beans and Sausage #slowcookerrecipe #chili #crockpot

Makes 6 servings

1 1/3 cup dried pinto beans or dried kidney beans
2 Tbsp tomato paste
4 celery stalks, diced
2 cups diced onion
2 Tbsp chili powder
6 garlic cloves
1 tsp cumin
1 Tbsp oil
1 Tbsp brown sugar
2 tsp salt
1 (14 oz) can diced or stewed tomatoes
1/2 cup water
1 lb smoked sausage, quarter inch slices (you could also use ground beef, ground turkey or chicken, or other sausage)
Toppings:  cheese, fritos, sour cream

1.  The night before you want the chili, soak the beans in plenty of water overnight.  The next morning, drain the water and rinse off the beans.
2.  Combine tomato paste, celery onion, chili powder, garlic, cumin and oil in a microwave safe bowl.  Microwave for 4 or 5 minutes until the onions soften.  Transfer to slow cooker.
3.  Place beans, brown sugar, salt, tomatoes, water and smoked sausage in the slow cooker and stir to combine.
4.  Cover and cook on LOW for 8-10 hours, until beans are soft and flavors blended.  Add salt and pepper to taste and more spices, if needed.
5.  Serve with desired toppings.

Someone commented on my facebook page that I hadn't done a lot of chili recipes.  And they were right in the sense that I haven't done a traditional chili.  I've done a white chicken chili, black bean chili, lime chicken chili, and taco chili.  So I decided to go the more traditional route with this recipe.  My husband loved the use of the smoked sausage and thought that it was 4 stars.  I loved the use of the fritos, sour cream and of course shredded cheese :)  If you wanted to make this recipe with canned beans you could easily do that (it wouldn't need to cook as long).  4 stars.


  1. What if I don't soak the dried beans first?

  2. I know that soaking is annoying. But if you don't do it the beans just don't seem to turn out as well. Plus they'll be more gassy. :(
    If you can't soak then consider using canned beans instead. (you won't need to cook as long)
    Let me know if you have anymore questions!

  3. Anonymous18/1/12 11:57

    If you will add a teaspoon ground ginger, you will not have the gas. Learned this from an Indian friend. It works for any dried beans, etc.

  4. I have a 15 month old am in the process of opening a gelato shop in my hometown and I have NO time. I think it's so important to eat "real food" even if your busy. I'm making this for dinner tomorrow night. I made a few substitutions based on what i had in my pantry. I used chopped sundried tomatoes instead of tomato paste and oil, used chopped fresh roma tomatoes instead of canned tomatoes and browned ground turkey with the onions and celery. I mixed it all up (minus the beans) and put it in the fridge to set in the slow cooker in the morning. I look forward to trying more of your recipes this year. Thank you!

  5. This chili is SPICY!

  6. To make it less spicy use 1/2 as much chili powder. Also, if you used a meat that was hot or even medium that could have added to the spiciness :)

  7. Do you mean ribs of celery or stalks

  8. Anonymous20/9/13 10:37

    My package of celery said stalks, is there really any difference?

    I have this recipe started in the crock right now - used 1/2 hamburger and 1/2 sausage pieces - doubled the recipe since I have 4 teens. Will let you know what I think, but so far, it smells wonderful!

  9. I think that each celery is a rib and the whole thing is a stalk?? I don't know :)

  10. 2 tsp is TOO MUCH SALT!!! Almost ruined it.

    Use half as much, and add more if needed.

  11. jzf, thanks for the comment! I guess the best advice is to salt and pepper to taste.

  12. Anonymous19/1/14 23:17

    If it's too salty it's probably because you used salted canned beans, salted canned tomatoes, and salty sausage. If all three of these are salted you might not need additional salt!

  13. Anonymous24/2/14 20:21

    if you don't have a microwave, would you recommend cooking step 2 ingredients on the stove, or just skipping step two and putting it all in the slow cooker?

    1. If you have time, I would saute on the stove!