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Slow Cooked Cattle Drive Chili

I am loving the new crock pot series and I hope you all are as well. I am so glad I decided to do this challenge this year. It is forcing me to be more creative with what I make using the crock pot. I often just made the same old things because we liked them and they were easy to make.

Now, I am forced to be more creative. I am coming up with new ideas and also recreating old favorites for the crock pot. This is a good thing because not only will my family get more variety, but I will have lots of new recipes to share with you all.

My goal is to offer a lot of wide variety of recipes over the course of the year. Last week I shared a crock pot pork chop recipe, this week we are covering chili, and next week I will be sharing a chicken recipe.

We all have different likes and dislikes. We all have different budgets and schedules. We all need something different, so for this series my goal is to cover a wide range of recipes and ideas. I want there to be something for everyone.

Now let’s talk chili.

Chili and crock pot cooking just go together. Chili cooked low and slow makes for the perfect cold weather food. Today’s recipe is one of my favorite chili recipes. Cooked low and slow and so good at the end of the day.

You might be wondering why it is called cattle drive chili. Well, this recipe is adapted from a recipe I saw on the food network years ago. Like back when the food network was a fairly new channel that not many people watched.

There was a show on that featured Sara Moulton, called Cooking Live, and I loved the show and watched it when I could.

One of the shows was all about cowboy cooking. She had a guest chef that came on and showed what cowboy type cooking was all about. Cattle Drive Chili was one of the recipes he shared and I knew I had to try it because it was simple, but hearty.

My husband’s favorite way to eat chili is to keep it simple. He likes it hearty, meaty, and spicy and Cattle Drive Chili is all those things.

I shared the original version of Cattle Drive Chili a few years ago and it is the version I have been making for probably close to ten years, if not more. The original recipe was cooked on the stove top for 1 1/2- 2 hours and I cooked it that way for years without varying it very much.

Recently though I was short on time and decided to cook it in the crock pot instead of the stove top and we loved it even more than the original version. Low and slow made the flavors of this chili so much better and I wished I had tried it a long time ago.

If you like a simple, but hearty chili with a lot of flavor you will love this. Serve it with fresh homemade cornbread and it is even better.

Lynn's Kitchen Adventures


  1. Karin Goodman says

    This looks good. My family (all but one) love chili, but I’ve never made it homemade. I know thats sad. Do you drain your kidney beans and rinse them before adding them?

  2. Cheryl Newton says

    Hi, Lynn. Can’t ever have too many chili recipes, in my opinion. I’m adding this one to my collection, for sure. One question, though. Number 2 in the directions lists water as one of the things added to the ground beef. However, the only water listed in the ingredients is the 3 Tbsp. mixed with the chili powder. Is there an additional amount of water I should add? Thanks!

    • The original version had extra water in it, but I don’t add it for the crock pot version since crock pots tend to have plenty of moisture. I just forgot to take that out of the directions. I fixed the recipe though so thanks for pointing that out.

  3. i have your other version open in my browser to make today… too bad i didn’t see this earlier! LOVe using my crockpot! oh, well, next time 🙂

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