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After sharing my Instant Pot shredded chicken recipe, I felt like my Crock Pot deserved some love, too. I really do enjoy using both! With the cold and dreary days of January in full swing, I’m majorly craving comfort food, and I’ve fallen in love with this low carb keto chili recipe in the Crock Pot (slow cooker). But, you can totally make this keto chili in the Instant Pot, too!
This is by far the most classic of my keto chili recipes, but if you want some variety, try my keto white chicken chili and whole30 chili. No matter what kind of low carb chili you make, don’t forget the keto cornbread!
Is Chili Keto?
So, I knew that if I wanted a keto chili recipe, I would have to make it a chili without beans. That’s really the only way to avoid too many carbs in chili. I was a little unsure about it, since beans are such a crucial component. Also, just as with my sugar-free BBQ sauce, I was uncertain because people have different perceptions about what a good beef chili should taste like.
I’m really glad that I decided to try my hand at low carb chili without beans, uncertainties notwithstanding! It made such a satisfying, healthy dinner with all the flavor of a traditional chili recipe.
Why You’ll Love This Keto Chili Recipe
- Rich, hearty, flavorful dish
- Chunky, thick chili texture
- Just 15 minutes prep time
- Three cooking options – Crock Pot, Instant Pot, or stove top
- Healthy, low carb, and gluten-free
Ingredients You’ll Need
This section explains how to choose the best ingredients for the best keto chili, what each one does in the recipe, and substitution options. For measurements, see the recipe card below.
- Ground Meat – I prefer grass-fed ground beef and typically use 85/15. Any ground beef you like will work, or you can substitute ground turkey or chicken.
- Onion – I used a white onion, but you could also use a yellow onion.
- Garlic – Use fresh minced garlic for best flavor or jarred for convenience.
- Diced Tomatoes – Two cans of diced tomatoes provide classic flavor, and be sure you don’t drain the liquid, which is needed so that the chili isn’t too thick. If you like a smoky flavor, try fire-roasted tomatoes instead.
- Tomato Paste – Also provides flavor and depth. Be sure there is no added sugar.
- Green Chiles – These chiles add a very mild heat, but feel free to adjust according to preference. You could also add jalapeños if you like the spice.
- Worcestershire Sauce – This helps give the easy low carb chili recipe umami flavor and slight sweetness. Worcestershire sauce is not keto friendly in large quantities, but just a couple tablespoons in the whole large batch of chili is fine.
- Spices – Chili powder, cumin, dried oregano, sea salt, black pepper, and a bay leaf. Feel free to add cayenne pepper for more heat.
The key to getting no bean chili right is being generous with the spices (see amounts on the recipe card below). Even my little girl enjoyed it, after I mellowed out the heat a bit for her by adding toppings (ideas below!).
How To Make Keto Chili In A Crock Pot
This section shows how to make Crock Pot keto chili, with step-by-step photos and details about the technique. For full instructions, see the recipe card below.
- Saute onion. In a skillet over medium-high heat, cook chopped onion until translucent. Add garlic and saute until fragrant.
- Brown ground beef. Add ground beef and cook until browned, breaking apart with a spatula.
- Mix low carb chili. Transfer ground beef mixture to slow cooker. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, green chiles, Worcestershire sauce, chili powder, cumin, dried oregano, sea salt, and black pepper and mix together. Add bay leaf into the middle.
- Slow cook. Cook for 6-8 hours on Low or 3-4 hours on High. If your slow cooker tends to run hot, stir every couple hours.
How To Make Keto Chili In The Instant Pot
This section shows how to make Instant Pot keto chili, with step-by-step photos and details about the technique. For full instructions, see the recipe card below.
- Saute onions and garlic. Select “Saute” mode on pressure cooker and saute onions until translucent. Add garlic and cook until fragrant.
- Brown ground beef. Add ground beef to onions and cook until browned, breaking apart with a spatula.
- Add remaining ingredients. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, green chiles, Worcestershire sauce, chili powder, cumin, dried oregano, sea salt, and black pepper and stir together. Pour in 1 cup water or beef broth (the liquid is an additional ingredient recommended for Instant Pot keto chili, due to the pressure). Place bay leaf into the middle.
- Pressure cook. Close lid and stop “Saute” mode. Select “Meat/Stew” mode for 35 minutes and start pressure cooking.
- Release pressure. Wait for natural release if you can, or turn the valve to vent if you are short on time. Remove bay leaf before serving. Instant Pot keto chili will be a bit thinner than the Crock Pot version, due to the broth added, but this is recommended for pressure cooking so that it won’t burn.
Stove Top Instructions
Stove top low carb chili is almost identical to the Instant Pot above, except you’d use a dutch oven:
- Saute onions and garlic. In a large dutch oven over medium heat, saute the onions until translucent. Add garlic and cook until fragrant.
- Brown ground beef. Add ground beef and cook until browned.
- Add remaining ingredients. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, green chiles, Worcestershire sauce, chili powder, cumin, dried oregano, sea salt, and black pepper and stir together. Place bay leaf into the middle.
- Cook. Cover and simmer for about an hour, or until the flavors develop to your liking.
The Best Keto Chili Toppings
Once you’ve made your low carb beanless chili recipe, it’s time for sides and toppings. Here are a few ideas:
- Shredded cheese – Cheddar cheese is my personal favorite, but you can also use Mexican blend or any other type from the keto cheese list.
- Sour cream – Yes, sour cream is keto! Use the full-fat kind.
- Green Onions – I prefer to slice them using kitchen shears, see how in my YouTube video of this keto chili recipe.
- Avocado – Dice it, or slice thinly and fan out. This is also in the video.
- Jalapenos – Slice them thinly. Remove the seeds if you want the flavor with less heat.
- Keto Cornbread – The BEST side for keto friendly chili!
- Store: Keep leftover keto Crock Pot chili in the refrigerator for 3-4 days .
- Reheat: Warm up the stew in the microwave or in a saucepan on the stove, until hot. You can also reheat keto chili in the slow cooker on Low.
- Freeze: Fortunately, Crock Pot low carb chili (or Instant Pot keto chili, if you prefer) is perfect for freezing. This one is a big batch recipe that makes ten cups — plenty to cover dinner right away and the freezer for later — and since it’s dairy-free, there are no texture issues. It’s super easy! And if you LOVE chili, make a double batch. Just let the chili cool, then freeze flat in freezer bags; once solid, you can move them around or place vertically in your freezer as needed. (I also like to do this with beef barbacoa for a ready-to-go taco night!) If you want it to last even longer, you could vacuum seal the freezer bags to remove any remaining air once it’s solid, but I usually don’t find it necessary.
More Keto Freezer Meals
I first made this low carb chili recipe when I was in freezer meal making mode before my second baby was born. That was several years ago, but I still appreciate easy keto freezer meals… and I’ll bet you do, too, so give these a try:
Tools To Make Low Carb Chili
- Saute pan – For sauteing the onions and ground beef. This one is hard anodized, so it’s non-stick without PTFE or PFOA, and virtually nothing will scratch it.
- Wooden spatula – This one is great for both stirring and breaking apart the meat, and won’t scratch any cookware, in case your pan does scratch.
- Meat chopper – This little tool has 3 sections to break up ground beef faster for quick and even browning. Also awesome for tacos or taco salad!
- Crock Pot – This is the slow cooker I use for everything, including this Crock Pot low carb chili!
- Instant Pot – Use this if you prefer pressure cooker keto chili over the slow cooker version. Just as good, but much quicker!
Easy Keto Chili Recipe
This reader favorite recipe is included in The Wholesome Yum Easy Keto Cookbook! Order your copy to get 100 easy keto recipes in a beautiful print hardcover book, including 80 exclusive recipes not found anywhere else (not even this blog!), my complete fathead dough guide, the primer for starting keto, and much more.
Low Carb Keto Chili Recipe (Crock Pot or Instant Pot)
An EASY low carb keto chili recipe without beans, made in a Crock Pot slow cooker or Instant Pot pressure cooker, using common ingredients & 15-min prep time.
Recipe VideoTap on the image below to watch the video.
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Tap on the times in the instructions below to start a kitchen timer while you cook.
Crock Pot slow cooker instructions
In a lightly oiled skillet over medium-high heat, cook the chopped onion for 5-7 minutes, until translucent (or increase the time to about 20 minutes if you like them caramelized). Add the garlic and cook for a minute or less, until fragrant.
Add the ground beef. Cook for 8-10 minutes, breaking apart with a spatula, until browned.
Transfer the ground beef mixture into a slow cooker. Add remaining ingredients, except bay leaf, and stir until combined. Place the bay leaf into the middle, if using.
Cook for 6-8 hours on low or 3-4 hours on high. If you used a bay leaf, remove it before serving.
Instant Pot pressure cooker instructions
Select the "Sauté" setting on the pressure cooker (this part is done without the lid). Add a little oil and the chopped onion and cook for 5-7 minutes, until translucent (or increase the time to about 20 minutes if you like them caramelized). Add the garlic and cook for a minute or less, until fragrant.
Add the ground beef. Cook for 8-10 minutes, breaking apart with a spatula, until browned.
- Add remaining ingredients, except bay leaf, to the Instant Pot and stir until combined. (For the Instant Pot version, it is recommended to also add a cup of water or broth.) Place the bay leaf into the middle, if using.
- Close the lid. Press “Keep Warm/Cancel” to stop the saute cycle. Select the “Meat/Stew” setting (35 minutes) to start pressure cooking.
- Wait for the natural release if you can, or turn the valve to “vent” for quick release if you’re short on time. If you used a bay leaf, remove it before serving.
Last Step: Leave A Rating!
Serving size: 1 cup
This is a very chunky keto chili, which I think is a good thing. If you prefer yours thinner, you can add a little water (or broth!) prior to cooking to thin it out as desired. This may also reduce calories and carbs per serving, depending on how much you add.
Recipe from The Easy Keto Cookbook.
Nutrition facts are provided as a courtesy. Have questions about calculations or why you got a different result? Please see our nutrition policy.
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