Crockpot Chili with Spicy Sausage
(My Sister’s Favorite Chili Recipe)

The favorite chili recipe from our family cookbook, made with simple but beautifully balanced ingredients. The technique is simple too, just brown the ground beef and spicy pork sausage, dump everything else in, then cook slowly. A cousin calls my sister's sausage chili recipe “magnificent"! I agree – it's now my own go-to recipe for hearty, man-friendly chili.

Crockpot Chili, just cook the ground beef and spicy pork sausage, then dump the rest into the slow cooker. Man-friendly!

“...what a great chili recipe. It's got just the right amount of spice, the right amount of meat." ~ Anonymous

In 2003, my family on my mother’s side published a family cookbook, collecting 350 recipes from more than a dozen families and three countries. What a collection of tried-and-true family recipes!

At family gatherings, we stand in the kitchen – fussing over the food, of course – and compare notes from the cookbook. "Did you try Laura’s Carrot Soup?" "What about That Pink Salad?"

Still, some times a great recipe is overlooked until someone saves the day, as happened when Cousin Ingrid wrote, “Before the Super Bowl, you must tell your readers about the wonders of your sister's Crockpot Chili. It's absolutely magnificent and would make a great Game Day meal.”

So for anyone with a pot of chili in Super Bowl plans, this is my sister’s magnificent chili. It takes just a few minutes to cook the meat and sausage, then throw the rest into the slow cooker – yes, those onions and peppers go straight in, raw, and the results are great.

Another tip from my sister: chili served with – preferably over – homemade cornbread is one of her teenage boys’ favorite things to eat. I’m willing to bet they’re not alone.

ALANNA's TIPS Small pieces of onion and pepper 'melt' into the chili but large pieces remain intact. It's good to see what you're eating! The chili seems to lack liquid when starting out but turns out just fine.
Kitchen Parade is written by second-generation food columnist Alanna Kellogg and features fresh, seasonal dishes for every-day healthful eating and occasional indulgences. Send a favorite recipe via Never miss a Kitchen Parade recipe: Sign up for a free e-mail subscription. How to print a recipe on Kitchen Parade. Become a Kitchen Parade fan on Facebook!


Brown the meat, dump and go
Hands-on time: 20 minutes
Time to table: 7 – 24 hours
Makes 6 cups
  • 1 pound hamburger
  • 1 pound spicy pork sausage (a key ingredient, don't skip!)
  • 1 large onion, chopped in big pieces (see TIPS)
  • 1 sweet bell pepper, red or green, chopped big
  • 1 poblano pepper, chopped big, optional
  • 2 ribs celery, chopped big
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 15 ounces canned red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 28 ounces canned diced tomatoes
  • 6 ounces tomato paste (don't skip, it really adds)
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • Pepper or cayenne pepper to taste

Brown meats in a skillet, don't be afraid to let a little 'burn' form on the meat pieces, it adds flavor and texture. While the meat cooks, add the remaining ingredients to a crockpot or Dutch oven. When it's cooked, drain the excess fat off the meat, add to the pot and stir well to combine.

CROCKPOT Cover and cook on high for 6 hours or on low for 8 – 10 hours. Best served the second day.

OVEN Bring to a boil on the stove, then cover and cook at 250F for 5 hours, stirring occasionally. Great on the first day, especially if cooked early in the day.

STOVETOP My sister says her chili can be cooked on the stovetop, just make sure your stovetop can hold a slow simmer.

NUTRITION INFORMATION Per Cup: 392 Calories; 16g Tot Fat; 7g Sat Fat; 81mg Cholesterol; 945mg Sodium; 28g Carb; 8g Fiber; 11g Sugar; 31g Protein. WEIGHT WATCHERS POINTS WW Old Points 8, WW PointsPlus 10

A Super Bowl Menu

More Hot Soups for Chilly Winter Days

(hover for a description, click a photo for a recipe)
Chocolate Chili Scandinavian Pea Soup White Chicken Chili
~ more soup recipes ~
Alanna Kellogg
Alanna Kellogg

A Veggie Venture is home of "veggie evangelist" Alanna Kellogg and the famous asparagus-to-zucchini Alphabet of Vegetables.


  1. Sounds delicious. I'm really in a chili mood lately!

  2. Diced sweet potatoes?! In chili?!! Hmmmm.... Well, that sounds better than mushrooms.

  3. Anonymous2/02/2009

    We made this for our Super Bowl party last night, what a great chili recipe. It's got just the right amount of spice, the right amount of meat. There wasn't a drop left. This one goes in the recipe box. Thank you!


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Thank you for taking a moment to write! I read each and every comment, for each and every recipe. If you have a specific question, it's nearly always answered quick-quick. But I also love hearing your reactions, your curiosity, even your concerns! When you've made a recipe, I especially love to know how it turned out, what variations you made, what you'll do differently the next time. ~ Alanna