A delicious crockpot chili with dozens of 5-star reviews and winner of multiple chili cook-offs! This crockpot chili recipe winner is made with plenty of spice and packed with lots of flavor.
In a skillet over medium heat, cook the bacon until crisp. Remove on to a paper towel lined plate and dab off the excess grease. Set aside.
Reserve the bacon grease in the skillet. Remove the stem and seeds from the red pepper. Finely chop. Remove the stem and seeds from the green pepper and finely chop.
Finely chop the celery. Remove the peel of the onion and finely chop. Chop the jalapeno pepper and remove the seeds if desired -- leave them in for extra heat.*
Add the red pepper, green pepper, celery, onion, and jalapeno pepper to the skillet with the reserved bacon grease. Saute the veggies over medium heat until tender. Transfer to the crockpot.
Add in the three cans of chili beans (undrained and do not rinse), petite diced tomatoes, and tomato paste to the crockpot.
In the same skillet used to cook the bacon and veggies, cook the ground beef chuck and Italian sausage until no longer pink over medium high heat. Drain off all the fat and add into the slow cooker.
Add all the seasonings to the crockpot. Crumble up the bacon (or chop) into very small pieces and stir that in the crockpot. OR reserve the bacon in the fridge and add at the end. Stir everything together.
Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours. Taste and adjust seasonings (salt, pepper, chili powder, etc.) Enjoy with fresh cilantro, sour cream and cheddar cheese.
I use a 6-quart crockpot and this chili fills it to the top! It makes a lot which we love to eat throughout a whole week, take to a chili cook-off, or freeze in batches :) *The jalapeno pepper(s) adds a lot of heat. Omit or reduce as desired.