Monday, September 9, 2013

Easy, Make-While-You-Work Crock Pot Chili Mac

By the time I get off work and make my 1 1/2 hour drive home, I'd love nothing more than to cook a nice, hot meal for my husband and me. Too bad my body and mind aren't on the same page. More often than not, we end up with a hasty meal of whatever meat I can thaw out quickly enough, canned corn, and canned beans. If we've got it, I'll whip up mac and cheese. The flavors aren't complex, and there really isn't a lot of love put into it.

Enter the Crock Pot.

We both work 8+ hours Mon-Fri. We're out of the house before 6:30am, and no one is home again until at least 4:30pm. While that means I have to skip the "5 hours on low" slow cooker recipes, I have no qualms with leaving an "8 hours on low" meal simmering for 9-10 hours if I must.

This week, we bought ingredients for 5 slow cooker meals. Meal #1 is Chili Mac. Here we go!

Slow Cooker Chili Mac

oil, for skillet
1 yellow onion, diced
3 cloves minced garlic (or jarred equivalent)
1.5 lbs ground beef
1 can chili beans in gravy, undrained
1 can Rotel (diced tomatoes w/ green chiles), undrained
1 8-10oz can beef broth
1 green bell pepper, seeds and membrane removed, diced
1 tsp cumin
2 tbsp chili powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
4 servings cooked macaroni noodles (prepared just before serving)

In an oiled skillet on med-high heat, soften diced onions and garlic. Before onions become translucent, add ground beef and brown.


Add beef mixture to slow cooker, and combined with beans, Rotel, broth, pepper, and seasonings. Give it a stir.


Slow cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4 hours. I made mine the night before and placed in the refrigerator overnight. It's cooking at home as I type this.

30 minutes before serving, boil/prepare 4 servings of macaroni and add to the pot. Stir and allow for 20 or so minutes on low setting.

Serve with shredded cheese, sour cream, corn bread, or tortilla chips.

I'll upload final photos later tonight. Enjoy!

UPDATE: AHHHMAZING! This chili mac turned out great. We'll be having it again for sure. :)