Slow Cooker Steak Chili aka The Best Chili I’ve Ever Eaten

Slow Cooker Steak Chili - www.PerrysPlate.com

Another name for this post could be, “How I almost sent my friends to the ER.”

I’m still having miniature panic attacks over this.

Monday night I was upstairs giving the girls a bath when my husband came home from work, went into the kitchen and found this chili sitting in the crock pot.

He ate some, then came upstairs and said, “You know how your crock pot lid handle is loose?”

“Ya?”

“It’s missing a screw.”

“OK. Did you find it?”

Slow Cooker Steak Chili - www.PerrysPlate.com

He looked at me nervously. Then I realized the screw secured the handle from underneath the lid.

“I think it fell in the chili,” he said.

About an hour earlier I had given half of that chili to some friends who had just had a baby. They also had small children.

GASP

Hubs goes back downstairs to search the chili again, and I grabbed my phone and frantically started a text to my friend. On his way down the stairs, he goes, “Tell them if they find it, we need it back.” He smiles.

He shouted from the kitchen that he found the screw.

Text deleted.

Breathing resumed.

ER visit avoided.

Future dinner invitations may or may not be declined if they happen to read this. (Or anyone for that matter.)

Slow Cooker Steak Chili - www.PerrysPlate.com

On a lighter note, this is probably the best chili I’ve ever made or eaten. It’s also the first time I’ve used steak in chili. I may never go back to ground beef unless I’m in a pinch. Or don’t have half of a cow in my freezer. Those chunks of beef just fall apart in your mouth.

It’s also another fantastic recipe from Emeril Lagasse’s book, Sizzling Skillets and One Pot Wonders. (The Slow Cooker Indian Beef and Slow Cooker Chicken were favorites of ours!)

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Slow Cooker Steak Chili

Yield: Serves 8-10

Prep Time: About 45 minutes

Cook Time: 6 hours

Total Time: About 7 hours

Ingredients:

1/4 cup chili powder
2 Tablespoons whole cumin seeds
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons dried Mexican or regular oregano
3 bay leaves
2 teaspoons brown sugar
4 pounds steak, cut into 1-inch cubes (can also use boneless chuck or stew meat)
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 1/2 Tablespoons Kosher salt
3 Tablesoons heat-safe oil (coconut or grapeseed)
4 cups chopped onions (3 medium or 2 large)
1 1/2 cups chopped celery (about 4 ribs)
6 cloves garlic, chopped
2 jalapeno chiles, seeded and roughly chopped
1 1/2 cups stock (beef, chicken, or vegetable will do)
2 Tablespoons tomato paste
1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
1 ounce semisweet chocolate chips
3 Tablespoons masa harina (corn flour, not cornstarch)
2 cups water
2 cups chopped butternut squash (optional)
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
1/2 cup chopped parsley
Grated cheddar, chopped green onions, and sour cream for garnish

Directions:

Combine the first 7 ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.

Add the beef to a large bowl and season with the black pepper and 1 Tablespoon of the salt.

Heat the oil in a large, deep skillet or saute pan over high heat. Add about 1/3 of the beef to the skillet. Let the meat sit for a minute or so, then stir them up. Cook for another couple of minutes, then transfer the meat to the crock of a 6-quart slow cooker. Repeat with remaining beef, adding it to the skillet in two more batches and browning them in spots. Add more oil between batches, if necessary.

When you're finished with the beef, add the onion, celery, and 1 Tablespoon of the remaining salt to the skillet and cook, stirring, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 2 minutes. Add garlic, jalapenos, and spice mixture and cook for another minute. Pour in the stock, tomato paste, and crushed tomatoes and simmer for 3 minutes. Stir in the chocolate, masa harina, and another couple large pinches of salt and cook for another minute. Transfer this mixture to the slow cooker with the beef. Add the water and the squash cubes (if using).

Cover and cook on high for 6 hours, stirring only once or twice, until the beef is very tender. Remove the bay leaves and stir in the cilantro and parsley. Serve the chili with garnishes.

Nat's Notes:
1. The original recipe had 1 teaspoon of cayenne. I thought this was plenty spicy, and perhaps a little too much for my 4-year-old who filled her chili with cornbread and sour cream.

adapted lightly from Sizzling Skillets and Other One-Pot Wonders by Emeril LaGasse

P.S. Congrats to Shin Yu Pai for winning the Real Snacks cookbook giveaway!

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32 Responses to “Slow Cooker Steak Chili aka The Best Chili I’ve Ever Eaten”

  1. 1

    Bev @ Bev Cooks — January 10, 2013 @ 6:56 am

    STEAK in chili? I’m dying. I love that. Even if there are screws in it. I’m in.

    [Reply]

  2. 2

    Jenne — January 10, 2013 @ 7:30 am

    Oh, I need to make this! My recipe is very similar and as I was reading down the ingredients I was going to tell you I add some dark chocolate, and voila! There it is! I’m drooling now!

    [Reply]

  3. 3

    Christine — January 10, 2013 @ 8:09 am

    I had a similar thing happen, but thankfully only my husband and I were eating the food from the crockpot :) We received a crockpot with a hinged lid for our wedding. At the time, I thought it was a great idea because you didn’t have to worry about setting the lid off to the side. However, after a few uses, the hinge fell apart and pieces of plastic and the screw fell into the roast I was cooking. I think (hope) we fished them all out before eating!

    [Reply]

  4. 4

    Liz @ The Lemon Bowl — January 10, 2013 @ 9:39 am

    I love the masa harina in this!! YUM!

    [Reply]

  5. 5

    Bree {Skinny Mommy} — January 10, 2013 @ 9:49 am

    Lol! So glad you found that screw! This chili looks awesome. I love the dash of cinnamon and masa harina!

    [Reply]

  6. 6

    Joanne — January 10, 2013 @ 6:11 pm

    That’s the kind of thing I have nightmares about! I’m so glad it all turned out okay! And this chili looks hearty in the best possible way.

    [Reply]

  7. 7

    Sonia! The Healthy Foodie — January 11, 2013 @ 12:42 pm

    Screw or no screw, I would definitely love me a bowl of this… please?
    I always add cocoa powder to my chili… but chocolate chips? Interesting!
    I am so pinning this. I am way overdue for a good, comforting bowl of warm chili!

    [Reply]

  8. 8

    Julia {The Roasted Root} — January 11, 2013 @ 12:50 pm

    I’d eat your screwy chili any day! ;) This post cracked me up and now all I want is steak chili :)

    [Reply]

  9. 9

    Gwen @SimplyHealthyFamily — January 11, 2013 @ 4:46 pm

    Yikes! At least you got to enjoy your chili ‘) oh and no one was hurt ;}
    My pressure cooker fell apart into my dinner once and I had to throw it all away. grrrrr.

    [Reply]

  10. 10

    Erika @ The Hopeless Housewife — January 11, 2013 @ 6:05 pm

    I’m glad you found the screw, how scary! But the chili looks fabulous!

    [Reply]

  11. 11

    Carrie @ Kiss My Whisk — January 11, 2013 @ 8:24 pm

    I’m obsessed with chili, and I cannot wait to try this recipe!

    [Reply]

  12. 12

    kathryn — January 13, 2013 @ 9:44 pm

    Wait….. this chili has CHOCOLATE in it?? I think my mind just blew up! I’m going to try this with the last stew meat in the freezer. It took us about 6 months, but we’ve finally almost eaten the entire 1/8 of a cow we got last May. (We don’t eat a lot of beef, kind of ironic, right?) We’re getting 1/4 share in a few weeks, so that should last us quite a while :)

    [Reply]

  13. 13

    natalie@thesweetslife — January 15, 2013 @ 10:37 am

    wow–I’ve never tried steak in chili but this sounds fantastic!!

    [Reply]

  14. 14

    Aggie — January 15, 2013 @ 12:22 pm

    Phew!! Too funny, but kinda not? ;)

    My husband would be thrilled if I made steak chili. Seriously thrilled. This looks amazing.

    [Reply]

  15. 15

    Anna — January 16, 2013 @ 5:02 pm

    It was awesome,we loved the steak and the squash and the screw;) you are amazing!

    [Reply]

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  17. 16

    Jess — February 17, 2013 @ 4:56 pm

    Made this tonight and it was awesome! It was my first experience putting
    steak in chili and I doubt I’ll ever go back to ground beef. I used chunks of stew meat, chopped into 1-in pieces (will probably cut them even smaller next time). I threw in some extra chili powder (maybe a tablespoon or so) and about 1 T. extra tomato paste. I also added 2 cans of rinsed, dark red kidney beans in place of the squash to keep it nice and savory. YUM! I’m looking forward to freezing the rest and bringing it out for a quick meal in a couple of weeks. Recipes that produce enough to use more than once are the best. ;) Thanks so much for sharing!

    [Reply]

  18. 17

    Amanda — May 5, 2013 @ 12:54 pm

    Oh my goodness! So glad you found it. That could have been bad. Pinning this! Looks fantastic!

    [Reply]

  19. 18

    Nancy Hermes — July 17, 2013 @ 5:04 pm

    I tried this recipe tonight and it was absolutely the best Chili I have ever made or eaten! Thanks for sharing!

    [Reply]

  20. 19

    Amy Hernandez — September 17, 2013 @ 8:30 am

    I’ve never heard of adding chocolate giving it a try.
    I’m confused about the harina de masa. Is this the same as corn meal?
    Difficulty finding it in Alaska :/

    [Reply]

    • Natalie Perry replied: — September 17th, 2013 @ 9:40 am

      Hi Amy! You’ll love the richness the chocolate adds! And corn masa is corn flour, not cornmeal. It’s finer like regular flour. If you can’t find it you can either leave it out or use cornmeal, but using it may make the chili kind of gritty. You might be better off serving it with cornbread. Good luck!

  21. 20

    Veronica Hamel — September 29, 2013 @ 9:57 pm

    Chili without any beans? Isn’t this vegetable beef soup.

    [Reply]

    • Natalie Perry replied: — September 30th, 2013 @ 1:25 pm

      Calling something “chili” has more to do with the spices you use than whether or not it contains beans. In some parts of the country (ahem… Texas) it’s blasphemous to put beans in chili.

  22. 21

    Jenna — October 27, 2013 @ 11:58 am

    This sounds great, but I have to ask… what type of steak cut did you use? Serloin? Bonesless ribeye? Curious, but I wanna make this!

    [Reply]

    • Natalie Perry replied: — October 28th, 2013 @ 1:24 pm

      I believe I used sirloin. I think any cut of steak would work well except maybe tenderloin. Because it’s a slow cooker recipe, you could also use stew meat or boneless chuck roast cut up into small chunks.

  23. 22

    Joanne — December 5, 2013 @ 5:27 pm

    Fantastic chili! no changes except for using only one jalapeƱo, won 1st prize in chili contest at my church with 13 other entries. Thanks so much!

    [Reply]

    • Natalie Perry replied: — December 9th, 2013 @ 10:38 pm

      Wow!! Thanks for letting me know! And congrats on the win :)

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  26. 23

    Kaleena — February 27, 2014 @ 10:53 am

    This looks amazing, I can’t wait to try it this weekend! Are there no beans in this chili? or am I missing something? PS I absolutely LOVE your whole grain, shortening free pie crust..to die for. Thanks!

    [Reply]

    • Natalie Perry replied: — February 27th, 2014 @ 1:56 pm

      Nope, no beans. Some people (ahem…a handful of Texans) think that chili shouldn’t have beans. I like it with and without. If you wanted to add a can to replace some of the steak I’m sure it would work!

  27. 24

    priscilla — March 14, 2014 @ 7:56 am

    Tried this recipe and it is AWESOME! I added too much salt the first time but I am going to make it again this week :-) Thank you!!!

    [Reply]

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