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3 Ingredient Easy Chili Recipe

This 3-ingredient easy chili recipe is made in 30 minutes or less! Thick, hearty, and filled with flavor. This is the perfect easy soup recipe for fall! 

We love serving it with warm cornbread muffins or adding cornbread croutons on top.

Bowl of easy chili recipe.
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The Best Homemade Chili

This easy 3-ingredient chili recipe similar to my chili recipe but has only three basic ingredients that you can build upon. If you have a little more time to let your chili simmer, this Wendy’s chili recipe is a winner, too.

All that you need to make it is a pound of cooked and drained ground beef, a can of chili beans (undrained), and a can of chili-ready diced tomatoes. Mix the meat, beans, and tomatoes together in a large pot, bring it to a boil, and then simmer for about 30 minutes.

Only 3 Ingredients!

It’s as easy as that! Delicious and hearty chili that’s ready in no time.

Chili cans and hamburger meat.

Find the full printable recipe with specific measurements below.

  • Chili beans: Make sure to use undrained beans. The sauce helps give that soupy consistency.
  • Diced tomatoes with green chiles: I like to use Rotel or Hunt’s Seasoned Diced Tomatoes in Sauce for Chili.
  • Ground beef: Lean ground beef gives the chili a heartier flavor. Drain the ground beef grease before adding the remaining ingredients.

Ways to Modify

At this point, you have a great bowl of thick and hearty chili. It serves four to six people and has a great flavor just on its own. But sometimes I like to get creative, and I’ll add in some extra ingredients to make it even better.

  • Add spice! Kick up the spice by adding chili powder, cayenne pepper, red pepper flakes, or hot sauce.
  • Protein. Use different meat like shredded chuck roast, stew meat, diced chicken, ground turkey, or diced beef sausage.
  • Beans. Experiment with different beans! Try adding a can of black beans, cannellini, pinto beans, or kidney beans.
  • Garnish. Top chili with onions, jalapenos, sour cream, sliced avocado, or shredded cheddar cheese.

How to Make Easy Chili

With three pantry staple ingredients then chili will be made in three steps! It is that easy!

Chili in a pot with wooden spoon.
  1. Mix ingredients together in a pot. In a large pot, mix together the cooked beef, beans, and tomatoes.
  2. Bring to a boil, then simmer. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat, then reduce heat to medium-low and let simmer for about 30 minutes.
  3. Serving. Add your favorite toppings and enjoy. Add salt and pepper to taste. Then enjoy with your favorite toppings such as shredded cheese, sour cream, chopped tortilla chips, and green onions.

5 star review

“Very easy chili recipe to make and it was delicious, the whole family enjoyed it, will be making it regularly, thanks!”


Expert Tips

Take this 3 ingredient chili recipe to the next level with a few extra add-ins like seasoning, veggies, or even different meat. This is a great base to start with and stir in a twist of ingredients for the best chili recipe.

  • Seasoning. Add in more seasonings to boost the flavor. We love chili powder, cumin, paprika, oregano, and garlic powder. You can even make this homemade chili seasoning for extra flavor.
  • Vegetables. If you love to add in more ingredients try chopped carrots, sliced red onion, corn, bell peppers, or celery.
  • Don’t drain. You will want to leave the cans of beans undrained. This adds liquid to the chili and makes it more soupy.
  • Adding to the chili. When adding different ingredients, the key is to keep the ratio of 1 pound of meat, 1 can of beans, and 1 can of diced tomatoes. If it’s too thick, just add a small can of tomato sauce, along with a little chili powder.

Recipe FAQs

Can I make this easy 3-ingredient chili recipe in the crockpot?

Absolutely! Simply add all ingredients to the slow cooker and mix together. Then cook on low for 3 to 4 hours. It will be the best crockpot chili!

Can I make this chili with other types of meat or beans?

The key to this recipe is that it offers limitless possibilities of variations. You can swap out the beef for turkey, Beyond meat, stew meat, chicken, etc. Want a different bean than chili? Add in whatever kind you like with a little chili seasoning. Have fun making this your own!

Can I make a vegetarian 3 ingredient chili recipe?

Yes! Use plant-based ground meat or omit the meat and use only vegetables.

What if I don’t have canned tomatoes with chili seasoning?

No problem! You can use canned diced tomatoes and add your own seasoning to the tomatoes.

Can I use fresh tomatoes instead of canned tomatoes?

Yes! That will taste fresh and flavorful. Peel and dice the fresh tomatoes for a smoother texture. Then add your own homemade chili seasoning to the tomatoes before adding them to the beef chili recipe.

Bowl of easy chili with cheese on top.

When it comes to easy soup recipes, this quick chili recipe is at the top of my list. Some of my other favorites are taco soup, lasagna soup, crockpot chicken enchilada soup, and hearty vegetable soup.

Storing and Reheating Easy Chili Recipe

Store your 3 ingredient chili recipe with ease! It is the perfect dinner to have over and over again during the colder months. It only takes minutes to reheat and is easy to store for three months long.

  • Refrigerator. Place the chili in an airtight container and store it in the fridge for five days. When ready to enjoy reheat!
  • Freezing. Freeze this easy chili recipe for another dinner. Allow the chili to cool to room temperature. Place it in an airtight container or freezer bag. Store in the freezer for 3 months.
  • Thawing. Take the chili out of the freezer and place it in the fridge to let it thaw completely. Then reheat when ready.
  • Reheat. Place the easy chili in the microwave or on the stovetop until it is heated through.

More Chili Recipes

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chili in a white bowl with tortilla chips and cheese

Easy Chili Recipe

5 from 42 votes
↑ Click stars to rate now!
Author: Jamielyn Nye
This 3-ingredient chili recipe is made in 30 minutes or less! Thick, hearty and filled with flavor. This is the perfect easy soup recipe for fall! 
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 6


  • 1 pound ground beef , cooked and drained
  • 1 (15-ounce) can chili beans , undrained
  • 1 (10-ounce) can diced tomatoes with green chiles , I use Rotel or Hunt's Seasoned Diced Tomatoes in Sauce for Chili
  • Kosher salt , to taste
  • Ground black pepper , to taste

Optional toppings: Cheese, Sour cream, Tortilla chips, Cilantro, Green onions


    • In a large pot, mix the meat, beans, and tomatoes together. Bring to a boil over medium heat and reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer about 30 minutes.
    • Season with salt and pepper. Enjoy with your favorite toppings, such as cheese and sour cream.


    Heat: For a little heat, use medium Rotel. For mild, use plain diced tomatoes or mild Rotel. If you’d like even more heat, add 1 teaspoon chili powder.
    Crockpot: You could also combine in a crock pot and cook on low for 3-4 hours.
    Taking it up a notch: This is an EASY dump-and-go chili. If you’d like more flavor, try adding a diced onion and minced garlic with chili seasoning. If you’d like a homemade chili, try this chili recipe
    Storage: Leftovers will be kept in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. 


    Calories: 210kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 19g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.5g | Cholesterol: 49mg | Sodium: 568mg | Potassium: 650mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 64IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 46mg | Iron: 3mg

    Nutrition provided is an estimate. It will vary based on specific ingredients used.

    Course: Soup
    Cuisine: American

    Did you make this recipe? Don’t forget to give it a star rating below!

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