You'll Want to Plug in Your Slow Cooker for This Paleo Chili Recipe
Looking for a hearty, low-maintenance meal that’s high in protein and chock-full of veggies? Look no further than this easy Whole30-friendly, paleo chili recipe. It combines lean ground beef with bell peppers, zucchini, and sweet potatoes for a lunch or dinner that’s balanced and delicious.
When we say high-protein, we’re talking about 36 grams of the muscle-building macro per 2-cup serving. (We definitely didn’t skimp on the serving size!) If you want to cut out some carbs, you can swap out the sweet potatoes for cubed butternut squash or pumpkin. And last but not least, you’ll get 9 grams of filling fiber in each 404-calorie bowl.
This gluten-free paleo crockpot chili requires just 15 minutes of prep time and a little patience in the pot to achieve that signature slow-cooked flavor the best chilis are known for. You can cook it in 7 to 8 hours at low heat, or crank it up to high heat to cook it in half the time.
Slow Cooker Paleo Chili
- 2 medium onions
- 2 medium bell peppers any color
- 2 medium zucchini
- 1 large sweet potato
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1 lb. 4 oz. raw 95% lean ground beef
- 1 (28-oz.) can diced tomatoes, no salt added not drained
- 1 cup water
- 2 tsp. chili powder
- 2 tsp. ground cumin
- 2 tsp. onion powder
- 2 tsp. dried oregano
- ½ tsp. sea salt or Himalayan salt
- ½ tsp. ground black pepper
- ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro (for garnish; optional)
Chop onions, bell peppers, and zucchini. Peel and chop sweet potato. Finely chop garlic. Set aside.
Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.
Add beef; cook, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes, or until browned. Add onion and garlic; cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes, or until onion is translucent; remove from pan.
Transfer beef mixture to slow cooker; add bell peppers, zucchini, sweet potato, tomatoes, water, chili powder, cumin, onion powder, oregano, salt, and pepper.
Cover and cook on low heat for 7 to 8 hours (or high heat for 4 to 5 hours).
Divide evenly among four bowls; garnish with cilantro (if desired). Store unused portion refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
- This recipe is paleo- and Whole30-friendly. To reduce carbohydrates and glycemic index, swap butternut squash or pumpkin for sweet potatoes.
- When all of the ingredients are added to the slow cooker, it may seem like there is not enough liquid. All of the vegetables will release liquid as they cook.
The Nutrition Facts box below provides estimated nutritional information for this recipe.
What Can I Put in Chili?
There are so many tasty ingredients in this paleo chili recipe. You’ve got your aromatics (onions and garlic), hearty veggies, and lean ground beef.
Be sure to take the time to sauté the onions and garlic and brown the beef, even though it requires a few extra minutes and an additional pan. This preliminary step means you’ll end up with deeper, richer flavors than if you were to just dump all your ingredients in the slow cooker and walk away.
And you can feel extra good about this paleo sweet potato chili recipe, thanks to the grain-free, dairy-free, and paleo-friendly ingredient list. Our recipe doesn’t include any highly processed ingredients with artificial flavors or colorings — only wholesome, healthy foods!
How to Store Leftover Chili
While you’re probably going to want to scarf your chili down as soon as the timer runs out, you can also make a batch and freeze it all for later. Just let it cool after cooking, then transfer it all into airtight, freezer-safe containers. You can even portion it out into 2-cup servings, so you can heat up just one serving at a time.
In the mood for even more chili? Try our Instant Pot White Bean Chicken Chili, which you can have on the dinner table in just a quarter of the time it takes to slow-cook.
Photography by Meghan Hensley