Classic Beef Chili

Classic Beef Chili is a ONE POT classic comfort food made with ground beef, kidney beans, crushed tomatoes, and spices, ready in under 45 minutes!

We know how important it is to make comfort food on cold winter days, thats why three of the most popular recipes on our site are Slow Cooker Beef Chili, Ultimate Slow Cooker Pot Roast and soon to be this recipe!

Classic Beef Chili

Classic Beef Chili is one of my all-time favorite comfort foods, made with ground beef, kidney beans, and spices in a thick tomato sauce. We top this chili with sour cream and shredded cheddar cheese, and serve with plenty of corn chips or corn bread.

Honestly, this is the last chili recipe you’re ever going to need, it’s that good. Plus it only takes ONE POT to make, so there’s less to clean up afterwards! Or if you’re a big fan of Wendy’s Cornbread, I have your perfect Copycat.

If you’re short on time, you can make this chili recipe with a packet of chili seasoning and a pinch of chipotle seasoning. This recipe also does great in the pressure cooker or the slow cooker, along with the stovetop. This is also the perfect meal prep recipe, and the total time to cook is under 60 minutes.

I almost always make a double batch of this beef chili recipe and freeze half for a quick dinner another day. We also like to serve this over baked potatoes the next day to use up leftovers.


Beef chili will last in the fridge for 4-5 days, stored in an airtight container. You can also cool the chili completely, wrap it tightly and freeze it for 2-3 months.


  • Diced tomatoes
  • Celery
  • Bell peppers
  • Green onions
  • Zucchini
  • Diced potatoes
  • Corn
  • Mushrooms

Easy Beef Chili


Use the sauté feature to brown the ground beef and onions. Then add all other ingredients and stir together. Seal the lid and close the pressure valve. Set on manual high temperature for 20 minutes, then let it release naturally.


  • If you don’t want to use ground beef, you can substitute ground turkey or chorizo in this recipe. Or, make this vegetarian by crumbling extra firm tofu and adding a can of black beans and two tablespoons of olive oil.
  • The longer chili sits, the more developed the flavors become. Some people swear that chili is always better the next day!
  • Serve with shredded cheese, avocado slices, sour cream, chopped cilantro, corn chips, and lime wedges. You can also garnish with a few slices of pickled jalapenos.
  • If you make this in the crock pot, use a liner bag to make cleaning up really easy.
  • You can make this more or less spicy by adding or taking away the cayenne pepper or adding chopped jalapenos when you sauté the onion.
  • For a different flavor, add some chopped chiles in adobo to the ground beef while it’s browning.
  • If your chili is too spicy, add a few tablespoons of brown sugar to cut the spice down and add a nice molasses flavor.
  • This recipe uses kidney beans but you can use any beans that you have, or a mixture of several types.

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Classic Beef Chili
5 from 7 votes

Classic Beef Chili

Classic Beef Chili is a ONE POT classic comfort food made with ground beef, kidney beans, crushed tomatoes, and spices, ready in under 45 minutes!

Course Dinner
Cuisine American/Mexican
Keyword classic beef chili
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 385 kcal
Author Sabrina Snyder


  • 2 pounds ground beef 85/15
  • 1 yellow onion chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Freshly ground black pepper
  • 15 ounces canned kidney beans rinsed and drained
  • 28 ounces canned crushed tomatoes


  1. In a large pot over medium heat add the ground beef and onion, cooking until no longer pink and the onions are soft.
  2. Drain the fat and add the garlic, stirring and cooking until you can smell it then add the tomato paste and chili powder, cumin, cayenne, salt, pepper, kidney beans and tomatoes.

  3. Bring it up to a boil, then reduce to a simmer (low heat) and cook for 30 minutes.

Recipe Notes

Note: click on times in the instructions to start a kitchen timer while cooking.

Nutrition Facts
Classic Beef Chili
Amount Per Serving
Calories 385 Calories from Fat 207
% Daily Value*
Fat 23g35%
Saturated Fat 8g50%
Cholesterol 80mg27%
Sodium 731mg32%
Potassium 887mg25%
Carbohydrates 19g6%
Fiber 6g25%
Sugar 6g7%
Protein 24g48%
Vitamin A 1225IU25%
Vitamin C 12.2mg15%
Calcium 91mg9%
Iron 5.2mg29%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Easy Ground Beef Chili

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.


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  1. Hola Sabrina,
    This chili was not good. it was too bland. It could also use vegetables just to also keep it healthy. I will try it again with some vegetables. What vegetables do you recommend adding?

    1. You can definitely spice it up to more to your liking. If you want to add veggies, I suggest carrots and bell peppers. Have fun experimenting.

  2. This recipe definitely needs tweaking. I made it as written even though I seriously doubted the missing sugar. Well I was right. It is waaaaay too acidic without the addition of sugar. I’m brutally honest in this review because most of the reviews posted are people that just want to try out the recipe. I would add 2 teaspoons of sugar to the pot and some oregano as well. However the base of this recipe is great. I’d just build on it.

  3. Great chili recipe. Made in the InstantPot. Sautéed beef and onions then turned to slow cook. Let it sit in fridge overnight. Was scrumptious and easy. My new ‘go too recipe for chili.

  4. MERRY CHRISTMAS to you and yours!
    I did add 1Tbsp of oregano to the recipe and it was DELISH! I also added 1 can tomatoes w/green chillies. My college daughter said it was “really good”! I have 1 serving left that I need to hide from the spouse. (Ohmygosh-so good!)

  5. If I leave the beans out, will it still be good. Not a bean lover, but like chili.n. That’s why
    I gave it the four stars. Only took 1 away for the beans ;o]

  6. This chili looks so yummy. I love chili, but my husband isn’t a fan so to be able to freeze the extra is wonderful. I don’t like kidney beans and usually sub them with black beans.

  7. Hi Sabrina, I am making this for dinner and as I’m adding the spices, I wasn’t sure how much oregano and paprika to add so I guessed at it. Should it have been in the ingredient list, am I blind or what? Thanks for your help.

  8. Earlier I saw a receipt for crab artichoke dip and I can’t find it again. Would you be able to send that to me please.

  9. This looks really delicious! You’re totally right that a big bowl of chili is such great comfort food this time of year! I really appreciate all the terrific tips you gave, especially on how to make this on stovetop vs. pressure cooker vs. slow cooker – that’s super-helpful! And great ideas on all those toppings and different mix-ins (yum – zucchini and mushrooms!). So many great ideas and variations to try – love it!

  10. It looks totally fabulous blog. it is water in My mouth to see your fabulous recipes here hmmm i love to learn this and apply at my home.

  11. Oregano and Paprika aren’t in the ingredient list but are mentioned in the directions. How much of each, if they are supposed to be in the recipe??