Crew Mess: Texas Easy Slow-Cook Chili

Apr 7, 2015 by Capt. John Wampler

Texas Easy Slow-Cook Chili

Since long ago, when the second person on Earth mixed peppers and beef and cooked them together, the great debate began; who makes the best chili. Maybe it’s the effect of capisicum spices that makes chili cooks crazy.

Some say chili originated on the cattle trails of west Texas in the early 19th century. Others tell the grisly tale of angry Aztecs who cut up invading conquistadors, seasoned chunks of them with a passel chili peppers, and ate them.

GALLEY MESS Texas Chili 002

Texas Easy Slow-Cook Chili

One thing is for certain: for Texans like myself, chili is not only an institution, it’s a matter of personal pride.


3 lbs ground, or 1-inch cubed, beef round tip

2 ½ cups onions, finely chopped

4 large cloves garlic, minced

1 jalapeño chili, seeded and chopped

1 can (6 oz.) tomato paste

2 cans (14.5 oz. each) diced tomatoes in sauce

3 ½ cups beef broth

¼ cup Mexican chili powder

1 Tbsp. ground cumin

The first thing you will notice is that there are no beans in true Texas chili. In a 12-inch skillet, brown half of the meat until thoroughly cooked. Drain in a colander and transfer to a 5-quart slow cooker. Repeat with remaining meat.

Add onions, garlic, jalapeño, tomato paste, tomatoes and sauce, broth, chili powder and cumin. Mix well and let cook for 8 hours (or overnight) on low heat setting.

One bit of advice. Let the chili cook for at least four hours before tasting. Let the spices incorporate before adding any more peppers. Remember, you can always add heat, but you can’t take it away.

Serve with green onion, cilantro and shredded cheddar cheese. Enjoy.