This chili is flavorful without being too spicy. I'm a wuss about spicy things. And I hate onions and peppers. So I took my preferences and combined them with this recipe for turkey chili, the crockpot chili recipe from The Simple Dollar and some advice from a co-worker.
1 pound of dried pinto beans
1 pound of ground beef (I used a package with a little over a pound)
1 29 ounce can of tomato sauce
1 14.5 ounce can of diced chili tomatoes (I bought the HEB brand. You can used regular diced tomatoes if you can't find the flavored kind.)
1 14.5 ounce can of water (see below)
3 cloves of chopped garlic
1 T dried minced onion
1/4 t onion salt
2 T chili powder
1/2 t paprika
1/2 t Italian seasoning
1/2 t ground cumin
1/2 t salt
1/4 t black pepper
shredded cheddar (optional)
sour cream (optional)
1. Soak the beans in water overnight-ish in. (I did this around 9 a.m. Sunday morning and rinsed them around 6 p.m.) Make sure they're covered in several inches of water. After you soak them, drain and rinse them and put them in the crockpot.
2. Brown the ground beef. Don't drain it. Or at least don't drain it all the way. I used 80/20 ground chuck and used the grease for flavor. Put the beef with the drippings in the crockpot. (You can also brown ground turkey with some olive oil instead of beef.)
3. Add the tomato sauce and the diced tomatoes to the crockpot. Do not drain the diced tomatoes. Fill the empty diced tomato can with water and pour it in the crockpot. (I also used a little water to rinse out the tomato sauce can and poured that in the crockpot as well.) Stir.
4. Add in the garlic, minced onion and spices. Stir well.
5. You can cook this immediately, or you can put the crock in the refrigerator until you're ready to cook it.
6. When you are ready to cook, cook it for 8 hours on low. (You can probably do less, but the longer you do it, the more the flavors meld.)
7. Serve with cheese and sour cream on top for extra awesomeness.