3-Bean Chili Recipe

Today is a bean chili day. Quite hearty and full, this chili has a lot of beans and vegetables to make for a healthy meal. We use 3 types of beans when making this chili, kidney, navy, and black beans. We also like to add whatever vegetables we may have on hand, feel free to add things like corn or potatoes; okra; and chopped chili peppers.

Do note with dry beans, it’s important that the beans are cooked above the boiling point. So before you start this recipe, read more up on that potential danger with kidney beans. If you don’t want to use dry beans you can substitute these with canned beans, though you may be better off cooking this recipe on the stovetop for about 1-2 hours instead of a slow cooker.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cooking Time: 6-8 hours slow cooker on high

Servings: 4 or 2-3 dinners for 2 people


  • 1 lb. of dry beans (6 oz. kidney beans, 6 oz. navy beans, 4 oz. black beans)
  • 1/2 onion chopped
  • 3-4 carrots chopped
  • 3-4 stalks of celery, chopped
  • 6 cloves of garlic, chopped finely
  • Optional vegetables to add: Potatoes, okra, chili peppers, corn,
  • 1-16 oz. can of diced tomatoes
  • 6.5 cups of vegetable broth or water
  • 1 Tbsp. chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp. oregano
  • 1 tsp. pepper
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • Optional: Cornstarch to thicken the stew


  • Slow cooker
  • Measuring cup(s)/spoons
  • Knife and cutting board
  • Weight scale
  • Can opener
  1. Weigh out the dry beans; you can alter the ratio how you like such as adding more navy beans and fewer kidney beans. Add the beans to the slow cooker. Chop the onion, carrots, celery, and garlic and add to the slow cooker too. If you have any other vegetables, add them now.
  2. Add the can of diced tomatoes and the 6.5 cups of broth or water and give it a quick stir to incorporate the ingredients.
  3. Measure out and add the 1 Tbsp. each of chili powder and oregano. Then the 1 tsp. each of pepper, cumin, and paprika. And then the 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper. Cayenne pepper can be omitted if it’s too spicy; or increased if you want more of a kick. Stir everything again to mix the ingredients.
  4. Turn the slow cooker on high and cook for 6 to 8 hours. To make the point again, with dry beans, it’s important that the beans are cooked above the boiling point. If your slow cooker can’t heat the beans to 212F for at least 30 minutes, then you’ll need to add a soak and pre-boil before adding the beans to the slow cooker.

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