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Smokey Steak and Bean Chili (Slow-cooker)

January 24, 2015

imageThis is a perfect meal for a weeknight, but make some honey cornbread and a nice salad and you’ve got something special enough to serve company on the weekends. This is essentially a dump -a-can of everything pantry recipe. Also if you don’t have the chilis in adobo, don’t worry. Some smoky chipotle or ancho chili powder will give it that oh so yummy flavor. If , I mean when, you do go out and get a can of chills in adobo for this recipe, you will have A LOT of them left over. My suggestion- freeze them. I like to dump the remainder of the can in a large freezer bag, push out the air and freeze flat. Once frozen break up the peppers, this way you can grab a couple out at a time for future recipes with out needing to thaw out the entire contents. I love these chills in corn chowder, enchiladas, slow cooked pork or chicken. They are spicy, so a little goes a long way.

If you don’t have steak, you can sub in browned ground beef or turkey. I have in the past done a combo of both. (I had left over taco meat I threw in once and no one was the wiser.)

Smoky Steak and Bean Chili – Slow cooker

Adapted from Real Simple – Smoky Beef and Bean Chili by Charlyne Mattox


  • 2  cans kidney beans – drained and rinsed
  • 2 cans diced tomatoes
  • 12 ounces beer (lager preferred, but any beer except a dark will work.)
  • 3/4- 1 lb beef chuck or any cut of meat, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1-2 tablespoons chili powder ( I like to use a combination of chili powders – chipotle, ancho, and classic chili powder.)
  • 1 to 3 teaspoons chopped chipotles in adobo sauce – these are spicy in my opinion but give a really deep smoky flavor.
  • Bell peppers – I love the frozen precut ones at Trader Joe’s about 1/2 bag or 1-2 red or green bell peppers (Optional but highly recommended!)
  • 3/4 tsp kosher salt – to taste


  1. Open all the cans and mix together the drained beans, tomatoes in their juices, beer, beef, yellow onion, garlic, tomato paste, flour, chili powder, chipotles, bell peppers, and ¾ teaspoon salt. Stir it up.
  2. Cook on low for 7 to 8 hours or on high for 4 to 5 hours.

TIP: This is a perfect recipe to prep the night before in your crock. Store the crock in the fridge overnight and then pull it out as you are getting ready for the day to allow the crock a little time to warm up, so it doesn’t crack from the extreme temp change of the fridge to the slow-cooker . Turn it on as you walk out.

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