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The Pioneer Woman Chili

This hearty chili recipe from The Pioneer Woman has a perfect blend of seasonings, ground beef, and beans. It’s Stove Top, Crock Pot, and Instant Pot friendly and will quickly become your best chili recipe!

Be sure to serv this with a side of  Cornbread!

A wooden spoon scooping up chili from a cooking pot.

Homemade chili was always a struggle for me to make before I discovered this recipe. The truth is, people like their chili several different ways. To me, this is a quick and easy base that you can tweak according to who you are making it for.

My husband likes it “plain” like this. Just meat, beans, a little sauce, and this perfect seasoning combination.

Others like to doctor it up with bell peppers, onions, (even celery and mushrooms)!

How do you like your chili?!

How to Make it (Stove Top Method)

Cook ground beef in a large pot, drain excess grease.

Add garlic, tomato sauce, and seasonings. Simmer for 1 hour stirring occasionally.

Ground beef in a dutch oven with seasonings being added to make chili.

Combine the masa harina with the water, then add it to the chili.

Add the beans. Simmer for 10 minutes. Add serving garnishes of choice and serve!

Pinto beans in a soup pot before and after bring mixed into a pot of chili.

Crock Pot

  • Cook ground beef in a large pot, (or stove top safe Crock Pot). Drain excess grease.
  • Add garlic, tomato sauce, and seasonings. Simmer for 1 hour.
  • Combine the masa harina with the water, then add it to the chili.
  • Add the beans. Simmer for 10 minutes.
  • Add serving garnishes of choice and serve!

Instant Pot

  • Note: You’ll need more liquid for the Instant Pot version. Use 14.5 ounces of tomatoes for the Instant Pot Method, with the juice.
  • Set the Instant Pot to Sauté mode. Cook and crumble the ground beef until browned. Drain excess grease.
  • Add the garlic, tomato sauce, and seasonings.
  • Combine the masa harina with the water, then add it to the chili.
  • Add the beans.
  • Close lid and cook for 20 minutes on chili/beans setting.
  • Release the pressure, stir, and serve.

Burn Indicator: The more I use the Instant Pot, the more I realize that the burn indicator is easily triggered. As long as you try to scrape away anything that might be stuck to the bottom before you place the lid on, you don’t have to worry about the message as it will go away in a bit of time. I use a silicone spatula for this.

See recipe card at the bottom of this post for exact ingredient quantities and instructions as well.


👉 Tip: Add more masa and water as needed until desired consistency is obtained for any of the above cooking methods.

Masa Harina Substitute

  • Flour or cornmeal may be used to achieve a similar texture for the chili, but the flavor won’t be quite the same.
  • Cornstarch (mixed with equal parts water), can also but used to thicken the chili as well.

Can You Freeze Leftover Chili?

Yes. Chili is a great recipe to make in bulk and freeze for future meals.

You can thaw and reheat it in the microwave, or thaw it in the microwave and reheat on the stove top.

Storage

This chili should be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

More Pioneer Woman Recipes

What to Serve with Chili

Close up view of a wooden spoon scooping chili out of a pot with melted cheese on top.

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The Pioneer Woman Chili

4.80 from 29 ratings
This hearty chili recipe from The Pioneer Woman has a perfect blend of seasonings, ground beef, and beans. Make it on the Stove Top or in the Crock Pot, it will quickly become your best chili recipe!

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs. ground beef, 80% lean
  • 2 cloves garlic, diced
  • 8 oz. tomato sauce
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 cup masa harina, white or yellow
  • 15 oz. kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 15 oz. pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 14.5 oz. diced tomatoes, Instant Pot version only

Garnish Options

  • Shredded Cheddar
  • Lime Wedges
  • Sour Cream
  • Tortilla Chips or Fritos
  • Diced Green Onions

Instructions

Stove Top

  • Cook and crumble the ground beef in a large pot over medium heat until browned.
  • Drain excess grease.
  • Add the garlic and tomato sauce, cook for 1 minute.
  • Add seasonings: 2 TBS Chili Powder, 1 tsp cumin, 1 tsp oregano, 1 teaspoon salt, ¼ tsp cayenne pepper.
  • Stir to combine. Decrease heat to low.
  • Cover and let simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
  • Note: If the meat seems too dry after an hour, add water ½ cup of water.
  • Combine the masa harina with ½ cup water in a small bowl. Stir to combine. Add to the chili.
  • Add more masa and/or water until preferred consistency is obtained.
  • Add the drained and rinsed beans. Simmer for 10 minutes.
  • Serve with desired garnishes and cornbread!

Crock Pot

  • Cook and crumble the ground beef in a large pot (or stove-top safe crock pot) over medium heat until browned.
  • Drain excess grease.
  • Add the garlic and tomato sauce, cook for an additional minute.
  • Add seasonings: 2 TBS Chili Powder, 1 tsp cumin, 1 tsp oregano, 1 teaspoon salt, ¼ tsp cayenne pepper.
  • Stir to combine. Transfer to the Crock Pot.
  • Combine the masa harina with ½ cup water in a small bowl. Stir to combine.
  • Stir in the masa mixture into the Crock Pot. Add the beans and stir gently to combine.
  • Heat on low for 4 hours, or all day!
  • At any point you can add more masa and/or water until preferred consistency is obtained.

Instant Pot

  • Note: For the Instant Pot Method, use 14.5 ounces of diced tomatoes with the juice.
  • Set the Instant Pot to Sauté mode. Cook and crumble the ground beef until browned. Drain excess grease.
  • Add the garlic and tomato sauce, cook for an additional minute.
  • Add seasonings: 2 TBS Chili Powder, 1 tsp cumin, 1 tsp oregano, 1 teaspoon salt, ¼ tsp cayenne pepper.
  • Combine the masa harina with ½ cup water in a small bowl. Stir to combine.
  • Add the masa mixture, diced tomatoes with juices, and the kidney/pinto beans to the Crock Pot and stir gently to combine.
  • Optional: Add additional water and/or masa mixture to achieve preferred consistency.
  • Close the lid and ensure the pressure valve is shut. Set the Instant Pot to the Chili/Beans setting and heat for 20 minutes.
  • Flip the quick release valve or let the steam escape naturally. Serve with preferred garnishes!

Notes

Masa Harina Substitute

  • Flour or cornmeal may be used to achieve a similar texture for the chili, but the flavor won't be quite the same.
  • Cornstarch (mixed with equal parts water), can also but used to thicken the chili as well.

Nutrition

Calories: 613kcal, Carbohydrates: 42g, Protein: 40g, Fat: 32g, Saturated Fat: 12g, Cholesterol: 107mg, Sodium: 734mg, Potassium: 1198mg, Fiber: 14g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 999IU, Vitamin C: 4mg, Calcium: 110mg, Iron: 8mg
Did you try this recipe?Mention @TheCozyCook on Instagram or tag #thecozycook!

Recipe Source: The Food Network

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94 comments on “The Pioneer Woman Chili”

  1. Very yummy! How big is a serving size? Thank you!

  2. I have used this recipe twice with great success. The only thing I did not do, nor did it need, was the masa harina (at least for me). Came out pretty thick without it and if I’m Mexican and didn’t use it, I didn’t need it!! Tonight I mixed ground goat with beef and made frito pie! Thanks for an easy recipe! 

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