This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure policy.

Steak Chili is a rich, meaty chili con carne recipe full of beans, chunks of beef and spices. Topped with sour cream, cheese, and onions it’s the perfect hearty meal for cooler weather.

With slow cooker or stovetop options, this versatile steak chili recipe is easy enough for anyone to make. Serve with a slide of Sour Cream Cornbread or Cornbread Muffins for a complete meal.

Steak chili in a slow cooker with a ladle.
Pin this recipe for later!Pin This
Save this recipe
Enter your email below & we’ll send it straight to your inbox. Plus you’ll get great new recipes from us every week!

About The Recipe

Steak Chili is just one of many ways to prepare a hearty bowl of homemade chili. Everyone seems to have an opinion over the best type – ground beef, pork chili or chunks of beef? Pinto beans or kidney beans? Spicy or mild?

I love chili made just about any way, but I have to say I am partial to this steak version!

It is:

  • Easy to Prepare – Just saute the meat and then dump everything into your crockpot.
  • Versatile – It’s easy to customize this recipe, or any chili recipe, to your personal tastes. Add hot sauce for a spicier chili, or add ground beef to make it even more meatier.
  • Budget-Friendly – Chuck roast is one of the most economical cuts of beef, and cans of beans on pretty inexpensive. A batch of chili can serve a crowd without breaking the bank.

The great thing is, you don’t have to have a favorite – you can enjoy them all! Just be sure to give this one a try, and then compare it to my Instant Pot Skyline Chili, Turkey Chili, and my classic Easy Chili Recipe made with ground beef.


  • Beef Chuck Roast – This large beef roast is known for its higher fat content and tender meat when slow-cooked. You’ll cut it into chunks; or you can purchase “stew meat” which is basically scrap cuts from a variety of beef roasts.
  • Onion and Garlic – Both minced and sauteed to bring out flavor to add to the chili.
  • Beans – I used a combination of light and dark red kidney beans. Pinto beans, black beans, or white beans will work, too.
  • Fire Roasted Diced Tomatoes – I love the fire-roasted flavor, but if you can’t find fire-roasted, a regular can of tomatoes is fine. Opt for the small dice if you can find it, unless you prefer big chunks of tomato in your chili.
  • Tomato Sauce – To enrich the tomato flavor of the sauce.
  • Beef Broth – Adds another layer of flavor and helps to tone down the acidity of the tomatoes and chili powder.
  • Seasonings – Chili, powder, cumin, salt, and black pepper.
  • Optional toppings – shredded cheese, sour cream, cilantro, tortilla chips, or corn chips.

How To Make Steak Chili

See recipe card below for ingredient quantities and full instructions.

  • Brown meat with onions and garlic in a large dutch oven.
  • Stir in beans, tomato sauce, tomatoes, beef broth, and seasonings.
  • Bring to a simmer and transfer to a slow cooker, or continue simmering for 30 minutes to 2 hours.
  • Cover and cook on LOW for 4-6 hours, then keep warm until you’re ready to serve.
Browned meat and onions in a skillet.
Meat, tomatoes, onions and beans in a dutch oven.
Steak chili in a slow cooker with a wooden spoon.

Recipe FAQs

What is the best meat for chili?

The best meat for chili is one that’s tender, and usually with a higher fat content for added flavor. Chuck roasts, either cut into chunks or ground, tends to have the best flavor and texture.

Does chili con carne have beans?

Yes, traditionally chili is made with kidney beans or pinto beans, but you can leave them out if you prefer.

What is the difference between chili and chili con carne?

Chili con carne refers specifically to a spicy beef stew, while “chili” is a generic term that generally means the same thing.

Can I make this on the stovetop instead?

You can finish the chili on the stovetop by simmering for 30 minutes to 2 hours instead of transferring to the slow cooker.

Do I have to simmer before adding to the crockpot?

Finishing this chili in the slow cooker allows the flavors to deepen all day, making a super rich and flavorful chili. But no, you don’t have to simmer on the stove. You can simply brown the meat and onions, then transfer to the slow cooker and dump in the rest of the ingredients.

How do you thicken chili?

If you want a thick consistency, simmer the chili on the stove with the lid off for about 30 minutes, or adjust the heat to HIGH and cook with the lid off. This will reduce the liquid thus thickening the chili. Conversely, for a thinner consistency, add a little more broth.


Refrigerating – Cool completely, then store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4-5 days. Reheat in the microwave or in a saucepan on the stove.

Freezing – Cool completely and transfer to a freezer-safe container or plastic bag. Freeze for up to 6 months, then thaw in the refrigerator overnight before reheating.

White bowls with chili topped with sour cream and cheese.

Helpful Tips

  1. Don’t skip browning the meat – Searing the meat before slow cooking is crucial to lock in flavors and keeping the meat tender without falling apart.
  2. Keep chunks of meat small – When cutting meat, cut in thin strips but keep the length “spoon size.” You can cut larger chunks if you prefer, but they will take a little longer to cook and become tender. 
  3. Importance of simmering Bringing the chili to a simmer before adding to the crockpot helps with the consistency and even cooking. 
  4. Seasonings – Feel free to adjust the seasonings to your preference, adding more or less chili powder and cumin, or adding cayenne for heat.
  5. Thick or thin chili? I find this chili to have the perfect consistency. Thick, but not too thick. If you prefer a thinner consistency, add more broth or a little water.
  6. Toppings suggestions Cheese, sour cream, tortilla chips, corn chips, jalapeno slices, green onion, and chives are all wonderful toppings on chili. 

More Chili Recipes

Chili with sour cream and shredded cheese topping.

Slow Cooker Chili Con Carne

Steak Chili is a rich, meaty chili con carne recipe with chunks of tender beef, beans and spices. It's the perfect meal for cool weather.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours 15 minutes
Total Time 4 hours 25 minutes
Servings 6


  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 pounds beef chuck roast sliced thin and cut into pieces
  • 1 small onion diced (about 1 cup)
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 15 ounces canned light red kidney beans
  • 15 ounces canned dark red kidney beans
  • 8 ounce canned tomato sauce
  • 15 ounces canned fire roasted diced tomatoes
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Optional toppings: shredded cheese, sour cream, cilantro


  • In a large dutch oven, heat oil over medium high heat.
  • Add the chuck roast pieces and onion and cook until meat is cooked through and onion is tender.
  • Add garlic and cook for one additional minute.
  • Drain off fat then return the mixture to the dutch oven.
  • Add the beans, tomato sauce, tomatoes, beef broth and seasonings and stir until well combined.
  • Bring the mixture to a simmer and carefully transfer to a crock pot.
  • Cover and cook on low for 4-6 hours then reduce temperature to warm until ready to serve.
  • Transfer to serving bowls and serve with desired toppings.


Don’t skip browning the meat. Searing the meat before slow cooking is crucial to lock in flavors and keeping the meat tender without falling apart.


Calories: 605kcalCarbohydrates: 28gProtein: 53gFat: 32gSaturated Fat: 12gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 17gTrans Fat: 2gCholesterol: 156mgSodium: 1386mgPotassium: 1258mgFiber: 9gSugar: 5gVitamin A: 1109IUVitamin C: 4mgCalcium: 126mgIron: 8mg

Kristin Maxwell

Kristin Maxwell is the creator and main recipe developer, writer, and photographer of Yellow Bliss Road. A self-taught cook and self-appointed foodie, she specializes in easy, flavorful and approachable recipes for any home cook.

Free Email Series
5 Secrets to Dinnertime Sanity
Free email series with tested, tasted & terrific dinner recipes!

You Might Also Like

Leave a Comment

Recipe Rating

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


  1. Kristin,
    You mention tomato sauce in your recipe notes but I don’t see it listed in the recipe ingredients. Am I missing something? Thanks.


    1. Hi Linda, you’re right, it was overlooked in the ingredients list. Thanks for pointing that out so I could fix it! I hope you give it a try; it’s really tasty!

    1. Hi, you’re right, it was overlooked in the ingredients list. Thanks for pointing that out so I could fix it! I hope you give it a try; it’s really tasty!

    1. Hi Sheena, yes, it was overlooked in the ingredients list. Thanks for pointing that out so I could fix it! I hope you give it a try; it’s so good!