Slow Cooker Quinoa Chili

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Let’s talk about how tired I am for a second. I went to the grocery store this morning and bought a 12 pound turkey. See, the funny thing is we are leaving on Tuesday to go out of town for Thanksgiving. And I’m actually not cooking. So during check out, the lady was like “OH! Are you hosting the holiday at home?” and I looked at her with a blank stare. And then I think I muttered something entirely crazy like “I love turkey. Mhmmmmmmm.” I actually have no clue what I’m going to do with this. Anyone wanna come over for pre-Thanksgiving?

chunky chili

That’s not the craziest part of this store experience. I also left my car ON while I was grocery shopping. So. Yeah. Luckily we have a Prius and you can’t actually drive without a key. But um, imagine my surprise when I entered my car and it was, you know, STILL RUNNING.

quinoa chili

That’s what happens when you don’t sleep for two days and travel. Getting back to the normal routine is a lot harder said than done. Need another example? In the car TO the store, I realized I had a rather less than subtle hole in the crotchal region of my jeans. And instead of turning around, I just pulled my shirt down and continued on my mission.

This is, um, me on any given day.


Except at least this lady had coffee. Honestly, if I didn’t have a crock pot I would probably not be eating this week. That’s why I’m super stoked I already have this amazing slow cooker quinoa chili in my recipe arsenal.

quinoa chili3

Hands down, my favorite chili to date. It’s not only easy as pie to make, it’s healthy, hearty and perfect for weekdays, game days or just regular Thursday nights when you leave your car on while grocery shopping and go in public with giant holes in your pants.

Slow Cooker Quinoa Chili

quinoa chili5


Serves about 8.
Prep time: >15 minutes
Cook time: 6 – 8 hours


  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed
  • 28 ounce can diced tomatoes with chiles
  • 14 ounce can roasted tomatoes
  • 15 ounce can of black beans, drained
  • 15 ounce can chick peas, drained
  • 2 cups low sodium beef broth
  • 2 teaspoons onion soup mix
  • 2 teaspoons crushed red pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 cup part-skim cheddar cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Avocado for garnish
  • Cilantro for garnish


  1. In a large skillet over medium heat, heat the olive oil. Add the onions and garlic, cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add the ground beef and break up to cook evenly. Cook about 6 – 7 minutes, or until browned. Drain grease and add ground beef to the crock pot.
  2. Add everything else (except for the garnishes) into a 6 quart slow cooker. Mix well to combine.
  3. Set your slow cooker to low and cook for 6 – 8 hours, or until quinoa is fully cooked.
  4. Garnish each bowl with a few slices of avocado and cilantro.

Nutritional information per serving (about 3/4 cup):

Calories: 290
Fat: 10.2 grams
Carbohydrates: 30.1 grams
Fiber: 6.5 grams
Protein: 22.5 grams
Weight Watchers Points: 7

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  1. Thursday, November 21st, 2013
    Ha! I feel the same way. A lady tried to cut in front of me in the Starbucks line and I just gave the "I will cut you" look and she backed off.
    • Posted by cgallam10 on
      Wednesday, December 4th, 2013
  2. Thursday, November 21st, 2013
    i have had similar days and i blame it on lack of sleeplessness. Take it easy lady.
    • Posted by cgallam10 on
      Wednesday, December 4th, 2013
      Sleep, what is this?
  3. Sunday, December 1st, 2013
    I love quinoa chili, but I've yet to make it in a slow cooker. I need to try this!
  4. Posted by Abbie @ Needs Salt on
    Wednesday, December 4th, 2013
    Wow, this chili looks so delicious! And I'm not usually one to go for chili, but these bowls look exceptionally good.
    • Posted by cgallam10 on
      Wednesday, December 4th, 2013
      Yay!! I hope you like!