Slow-cooker chili

Time for more comfort food!  We have had a ton of rain here this week, and nothing says comfort like a big bowl of spicy chili and cornbread.  I don’t really mind the rain that much, but I know a certain 4-legged little lady that absolutely hates it.
Lizzie goes on potty strike for days whenever it is raining, to the point where I begin to worry about her.  She would be absolutely mortified if she had an accident in the house, but she will not go outside if it is raining. Luckily, I’ve managed to be home at lunch when we have had momentarily pauses in the rain, giving Lizzie a few minutes to run outside and take care of things. It’s tough being a spoiled dog.
Earlier this week, I decided I wanted to make a batch of slow-cooker chili. I’ve never actually made chili in my crock pot before, but figured it would be worth a try.  On Tuesday I gathered all my ingredients, prepped the meat and veggies, put it all in the crockpot, and then happily left the house.  Much to my dismay, when I returned two hours later, my house was not filled with spicy, welcoming aromas.  It actually still smelled quite a bit like wet dog.  Thanks Wilson.
Turns out to make slow-cooker chili you actually have to turn the crock pot on.  Fail.  This little mistake led to a huge mistake in Wes, Lindsay, and I ordering massive amounts of greasy Chinese food after we worked out on Tuesday.  They are going to kill me for sharing that little secret.
After waking up to extremely swollen fingers and a bloated face yesterday, I was very thankful to have my chili for last night’s supper.  I made sure to make sure the pot was on this time.

Slow Cooker Chili

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1 pound spicy ground italian sausage
1 whole onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
2 roma tomatoes, chopped
1 yellow squash, chopped
1 zucchini, chopped
2 cups fresh mushrooms, diced
4 Serrano peppers
1 Chili pepper (I think I used Anaheim)
1 can stewed tomatoes
1 can diced tomatoes (fire roasted)
2 cans tomato juice
1 can tomato paste
1 can ranch style beans
1 can kidney beans
1 can pineapple chunks (the larger can)
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp garlic salt
1 tsp pepper
1 1/2 tsp cayenne
1 tsp chili powder
1 beef bouillon cube
1/4 cup ketchup
2 tbsp mustard
3 tbsp Worcestershire
2 tbsp white vinegar

Spray a large skillet with pam and saute onions, garlic, bell peppers, squash, zucchini, mushrooms, and tomatoes.  Cook for about 5 minutes, then add to the bowl of the crock pot.  In the same skillet, brown the sausage. Once browned, drain fat and add to crock pot.  Add remaining ingredients and cook on high for about 3 hours.

Serve with cornbread. I like to crumble my cornbread over top and mix it all in, but it’s also great buttered up and enjoyed separately.

I know it looks like there are a ton of ingredients. It’s true. This chili has a lot going on. But, for the most part, it is stuff that you probably already have. And if you are missing a few things, I bet it would be just fine without it. If you are not a fan of heat, I recommend leaving out the chili pepper and some of the cayenne.  Wes thought this dish was pretty spicy, when usually he is adding heat to things.  I didn’t have a problem with it though; I thought it was just right. 
What are some of your favorite comfort foods?  Homemade mac and cheese is another one that tops my list, as well as chicken paprikash and short ribs.  Hello high cholesterol. Nice to meet you.

2 Replies to “Slow-cooker chili”

  1. I love the tomato flavors in this dish. Not really a fan of chili though, but I can use one when the cool chilly weather comes in. My comfort foods? Roasted chicken, mashed potatoes and pizza…
    I am sure my husband would finish a serving of this in a few minutes. Thanks for sharing.

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