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Slow Cooker Chili Mac

Want comforting, easy and delicious? This Slow Cooker Chili Mac is super flavorful and is the perfect dinner recipe for any night of the week!

A TASTY CHILI PASTA RECIPE

As the kids head back-to-school, our minds turn towards making easy and comforting family dinners. Nothing beats a good old Slow Cooker Chili Mac. It’s a family favorite! This recipe is super comforting and perfect for any time of the year. It is really a whole meal in one (but of course, we like a little cornbread with ours!) It is super easy to throw together with little effort. If you are looking for an easy, back-to-school dinner recipe, you need to make this Slow Cooker Chili Mac recipe.

Slow Cooker Chili Mac in bowl topped with sour cream.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:

Can I use other meats?

Yes ! You can also use ground chicken, turkey, Italian sausage or plant based meat substitutes.

Do I have to use elbow macaroni?

No. Use what you have available. Just make sure that you are using the same amount as the recipe calls for.

Can I make this spicier?

If you want to add a little bit of spice you can add in some chopped jalapeños. We like to sauté them with the ground beef and peppers when we do add them.

Can I use another cheese?

While sharp cheddar is the best since you can really taste if through the rest of the ingredients. However, feel free to use your favorite cheese! Some ideas include: Colby Jack, Monterey Jack, Pepper Jack, etc.

Do I have to use kidney beans?

No. Make this with what your family loves. Some alternatives would be canned pinto beans or black beans.

What are some good Chili Mac toppings?

There are various things you can top this Slow Cooker Chili Mac recipe if you’d like. Some of our favorites are: sour cream, green onions, parsley, black olives, hot sauce, salsa, tortilla chips and Fritos.

How do I store leftovers?

This can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container where it will keep for up to 4 days. This can also be frozen. Place in a freezer container and it will keep for up to 2 months in the freezer. To defrost, remove to the refrigerator overnight then reheat in the microwave.

Pinterest image of the Slow Cooker Chili Mack in crock pot with wooden spoon.

INGREDIENTS NEEDED: (FULL RECIPE AT THE BOTTOM OF THE POST)

  • lean ground beef
  • sweet baby peppers (optional)
  • tomato sauce
  • can of Rotel tomatoes
  • red kidney beans, drained
  • chili seasoning
  • ranch seasoning
  • water
  • elbow macaroni
  • sharp cheddar cheese
Ingredients needed: ground beef, sweet baby peppers, tomato sauce, rotel tomatoes, red kidney beans, chili seasoning, ranch seasoning, water, elbow macaroni, sharp cheddar cheese and parsley.

HOW TO MAKE SLOW COOKER CHILI MAC:

In a medium skillet over medium high heat brown and crumble the ground beef with the chopped sweet baby peppers. Drain off any grease.

Ground beef and peppers being browned in pan.

Into a 4-6 quart slow cooker add the browned beef, peppers, tomato sauce, Rotel tomatoes, kidney beans, chili seasoning, ranch seasoning and water. Cover and cook on low 6 hours or high 4 hours.

Browned beef, peppers, tomato sauce, rotel tomatoes, kidney beans, chili seasoning, ranch seasoning and water added to slow cooker.

In the last 45 minutes before serving, add in the elbow macaroni and stir.

Elbow macaroni added to slow cooker.

When the pasta is cooked, add in half of the shredded cheese and stir to combine.

Half the shredded cheese added to slow cooker.

Top with the remaining cheese and place the lid on the slow cooker until the cheese is melted. Optional: before serving, sprinkle on some chopped parsley for color.

Finished Slow Cooker Chili Mack in crock pot with melted cheese and parsley.

Enjoy!

Wooden spoon scooping up some of the Slow Cooker Chili Mac out of the crock pot.

WANT MORE DELICIOUS RECIPES? YOU MUST TRY THESE!

Close up image of Slow Cooker Chili Mac being lifted up with wooden spoon.

Slow Cooker Chili Mac

Want comforting, easy and delicious? This Slow Cooker Chili Mac is super flavorful and is the perfect dinner recipe for any night of the week!
5 from 12 votes
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 6 hours
Total Time: 6 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 6

Ingredients

  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • ½ cup chopped sweet baby peppers (optional)
  • 29 ounce can tomato sauce
  • 10 ounce can Rotel tomatoes
  • 30 ounce can red kidney beans, drained (2) 15-ounce cans
  • 1 ounce packet chili seasoning
  • 1 ounce packet ranch seasoning
  • 2 cups water
  • 3 cups elbow macaroni, uncooked
  • 16 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
  • parsley, for topping (optional)

Instructions

  • In a medium skillet over medium high heat, brown and crumble he ground beef with the chopped peppers. Drain off any grease.
  • Into a 4-6 quart slow cooker, add the cooked ground beef with peppers, tomato sauce, Rotel tomatoes, kidney beans, chili seasoning, ranch seasoning and water. Stir.
  • Cover and cook on low 6 hours or high 4 hours.
  • In the last 45 minutes before serving add in the elbow macaroni and stir.
  • When the pasta is cooked, add in half of the shredded cheese and stir to combine.
  • Top with the remaining cheese and place the lid on the slow cooker until the cheese is melted.
  • Optional: before serving, sprinkle the top with chopped parsley for color. Then serve!

Notes

  • You can use any of your favorite pasta, just make sure it is the same amount called for in the recipe.
  • Swap out the ground beef for chicken, turkey or Italian sausage.
  • If you don’t like this much cheese, just cut the amount in half.
  • This can be frozen, see above on how to do that.
  • Top with any of your favorite chili toppings like sour cream and diced red onion.
  • You can use black beans instead of kidney if you’d like or do a little of both.
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American

Nutrition

Calories: 859kcal | Carbohydrates: 91g | Protein: 53g | Fat: 32g | Sodium: 1928mg | Fiber: 14g | Sugar: 12g

Nutritional Disclaimer

“The Country Cook” is not a dietician or nutritionist, and any nutritional information shared is an estimate. If calorie count and other nutritional values are important to you, we recommend running the ingredients through whichever online nutritional calculator you prefer. Calories and other nutritional values can vary quite a bit depending on which brands were used.

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2 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    YUM! I made this and my hubby and I love it! The only thing different I did was to use 2 lbs of ground beef instead of the 1 lb, and I used a red bell pepper instead of the baby sweets in the recipe. Definitely need a 6 QT cooker if you do the extra beef. I also needed a bit more time on the pasta–I used Cavatappi–it needed about another half hour to get tender, so maybe that type just needs a wee bit more simmering. Overall, it was easy to make and it will be a go-to in our family from now on! Thanks for sharing it.