Soups & Salads | October 11, 2018

Cook Off Winning Chili Con Carne

October and Halloween always make me crave chili.  This pressure cooker chili con carne is the perfect hearty chili with lean beef, and savory spices. Whip up a pot of this and watch a game, or serve it on Halloween like we do.  Try it with these breadsticks or with these cornbread muffins.
Best Chili Con Carne in white bowls atop a brown cutting board.

Grandma’s Secret To Delicious Pressure Cooker Chili

My Grandma’s chili is always the best…so many years ago I called her up and asked her for the recipe.  She was very matter of fact in her response – “always double your meat, and always use tomato juice instead of tomato sauce, the sauce is too sweet.”  I’ve stuck to those rules and came up with this EASY tasty chili.  I’ve even won chili cook offs with this chili.
Best chili con carne ingredients on a white surface

Stay Away From Seasoning Packets

When I first started cooking I relied on lots and lots of cooking packets.  Since then I’ve gotten away from those spice packets and used spices from my spice rack for a better, more homemade flavor, with less preservatives.  Most of the spices I used in this recipe are probably already in your pantry.

Overhead shot of at least 9 different spices needed for the recipe with slow cooker in the back

Load Your Pressure Cooker Chili With Toppings

Load it up with toppings, or eat it in its pure form – both are delicious!  I like to add cheese, onions, and crackers.  Lately I’ve been on a Crunchmaster Cracker kick.  I really love how crunchy they are, and I love that they are gluten free.  Reducing gluten in my diet helps keep inflammation at bay.  Lately I’ve shared my love for these Crunchmaster crackers with friends and family and I’ve learned that I am not alone!  So many are addicted just like I am!
Process shots for making Best chili con carne

Pressure Cooker and Slow Cooker Friendly

This chili recipe can be made in a slow cooker, or a pressure cooker – whichever you’re in the mood for.  Below I have a little how-to video of making this soup in the pressure cooker.  This pressure cooker chili recipe is simple and perfect results can be achieved by even beginner cooks.

Best Chili Con Carne in a turquoise dutch oven.

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Please let me know if you make this delicious instant pot chili!!  I love to hear from those who make my recipes.  If you want to keep up with our newest recipes, make sure you follow is on Facebook and Instagram, and make sure to subscribe to our newsletter.

5 from 2 votes
Best Chili Con Carne in white bowls atop a brown cutting board.
Chili Con Carne
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
5 hrs
Total Time
5 hrs 10 mins

Satisfy your autumn-induced chili craving with this delicious classic. 

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chili with meat, crockpot soup, pressure cooker chili
Servings: 8 -10 servings
Calories: 235 kcal
Author: Kadee
  • 2 LB lean ground beef
  • 1 onion diced
  • 60 oz canned chili beans in mild sauce
  • 2 cups tomato juice
  • 1/4 cup chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp flour
  1. Brown your beef along with the onion until cooked through.
  2. Drain the fat and transfer to a 5 qt crock pot.
  3. Add chili beans, along with liquids in the can.
  4. Add tomato juice
  5. Add remaining seasonings
  6. Cook on high for 1 hour and then turn to low for 4 hours. Taste and add salt as needed.
  7. Serve with saltine crackers, cheese, sour cream, onions, bacon or whatever else you like on your chili.
Recipe Notes


If using a slow cooker, you can reduce juice to 1 cup for a thicker chili.  If using a pressure cooker - use 2 cups to allow pot to come to pressure and to prevent burning.

Nutrition Facts
Chili Con Carne
Amount Per Serving (2 cups)
Calories 235 Calories from Fat 54
% Daily Value*
Fat 6g9%
Saturated Fat 2g13%
Cholesterol 70mg23%
Sodium 858mg37%
Potassium 791mg23%
Carbohydrates 14g5%
Fiber 3g13%
Sugar 5g6%
Protein 28g56%
Vitamin A 240IU5%
Vitamin C 7.8mg9%
Calcium 43mg4%
Iron 4.4mg24%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.


10 thoughts on “Cook Off Winning Chili Con Carne

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  1. Hi! This looks really delicious but I was wondering if you could estimate how many people it would feed? I’m so terrible at guessing that I’d love your advice! Thanks!

  2. The chili recipe looks amazing, and I was curious what canned chili beans you use? I was looking tonight and only saw canned chilli, i.e., Hormel, etc., but not specifically chili beans. Please let me know. I’d like to make this for our Halloween party this weekend! Thx!

    1. Hi Brandy! You’re going to love this recipe! The chili beans are near the black, kidney, and pinto beans – they are not placed near the canned chili. I usually buy the store brand or bush’s. The chili beans come packed in sauce and you can usually buy hot or mild. I always buy mild.

  3. I tried to make this in the 8qt instant pot and gOt the BUrn icon on the instant pot. Is that because I used the 8qt? Do i need more liquid?

    1. Hi Nicole,

      I’m so sorry you’re having trouble. There is enough liquid in the recipe that you shouldn’t have to add more – between the tomato juice and the liquid in the canned beans it exceeds the minimum to come to pressure. Was your valve set to seal? I’ve had the burn message when I forgot to seal the valve. My other thought is that maybe because you’re using the 8qt and not the 6qt it does take more liquid to come to pressure. I don’t own an 8qt, but I would recommend following the minimum liquid requirement from the manual for that size. It also may have just been a fluke.

  4. I am making the chili now for Halloween. I didn’t see a video or any instructio!ns for how long you should cook this in the instantpot. Help

  5. 5 stars
    I made this for dinner on Halloween and it was devoured! It was so flavorful, hearty, and easy to put together. I will be making this again soon!