Low carb chili is a soul soothing meal, full of meat, spices and saucy flavor — the perfect recipe to warm us from inside out and keep us full and happy for hours to come!
Although beans are often the foundation of chili recipes, this low carb chili uses meat instead — and trust me friends, after just one spoonful of this low carb chili you’ll be glad they’re gone.
Protein packed, meal prep worthy, delicious, cheap and easy, low carb chili is the perfect dish to keep the entire family happy, satiated, and full! So let’s get simmering one of the tastiest of low carb recipes!
Carbs in Chili
Due to the beans, beer and corn, there are an awful lot of carbs in chili when traditionally prepared. Unfortunately, even tomatoes are high in carbs. According to the USDA Nutritional Database, 1 cup of chili has 33.8 grams of carbs — and who the heck eats just one cup??
So if you’re wondering is chili a low carb food, the answer is no. But here’s how we’ll make it one…
How to Cut Carbs in No Bean Chili
First and foremost, let’s cut the beans, because there are a lot of carbs in chili beans. And the flavor in chili comes from the spices, broth and meat anyway — beans are there as a filler to add carbs and calories to the dish. Whether you eat carbs or not, many find no bean chili even more delicious — in fact, Texans have been making their chili this way all along!
Another carb heavy ingredient in traditional chili is beer, which is used to add a flavorful liquid to the equation. Yes, most of the alcohol cooks off as the dish simmers, but what about the carbs? Either way, beer isn’t on your low carb shopping list, so let’s swap it with a less carb-y, just as flavorful liquid: chicken/beef broth!
Keto Chili Recipe Toppings
This keto chili recipe can become not-so-keto is with a handful of traditional toppings: cornbread, croutons, beans, corn, you catch my drift. Let’s not dwell. Instead, let’s talk about all the exciting and DELICIOUS low carb foods we can use as toppings to make this low carb chili even most addicting:
- Shredded cheese, I love cheddar or pepper jack (pst — there are hardly any carbs in cheese)
- Sour cream
- Avocado (considered low carb fruits based on their NET carbs)
- Low carb greek yogurt, make sure the product you buy is actually low in carbs (I stick to Trader Joe’s brand or Fage)
- Toasted low carb bread recipe (bake this recipe into low carb croutons if that’s what you’re craving)
- Chopped Cilantro
If I missed your favorite topping, let me know in the comments below!
4 Crucial Paleo Chili Recipe Tips!
This paleo chili recipe is as straightforward as they come! But there are a few important tips to know before getting started that can transform this low carb chili from good to AMAZING:
1. Cooking this chili recipe no beans Low and Slow
No matter what chili recipe you use, you’ll find they all have one thing in common: cooking it low and slow — which allows the meat to become tender and flavorful. So no matter how hungry you are, simmer your low carb chili recipe no beans per instructions!
Low Carb Chili Slow Cooker
If you’d prefer this cooking method, simply brown the meat and toss all the low carb chili ingredients in the slow cooker on low heat for 8 hours.
The recipe calls to “simmer” the chili, this is what it should look like:
2. Sauteing the veggies in this low carb chili recipe
You may think this is an extra, skippable step. But cooking the aromatic veggies (onions and garlic) in this low carb chili recipe before adding liquid helps to brown and caramelize the surface, resulting in more flavor!
3. Use fresh spices in this Chili Without Beans
It’s a fact, spices go bad, and it’s hard to use a whole jar before they do! But spices are the foundation of this chili without beans, and stale spices will do nothing but hinder that scrumptious taste.
4. Not Making Enough Keto Chili
Low carb meal prep is extremely helpful in staying on track — and this keto chili recipe is ideal for that! Make a double batch, heck even triple! Allow the low carb chili to cool in the fridge overnight, then portion it out into labeled baggies. Next time you and the fam are looking for low carb dinners, just place it in a pot with some chicken broth and you’ll have dinner in no time!
Low Carb Chili Variations
As delicious as this low carb chili is, we all have different preferences. Here are some swaps you can try:
low carb turkey chili
Beef can easily be swapped for turkey in this low carb chili recipe! If you go this route, be sure to add vegetable oil to the pan before cooking the turkey, and again before you add the onions. (turkey has less fat than beef and needs some sort of grease so the ingredients don’t stick to the pan)
Adding More Low Carb Veggies
In an attempt to keep this as low carb as possible, I kept the low carb veggies to a minimum. That said, you can easily sautee whatever you’re craving to add it to this dish. Mushrooms perhaps? Bell peppers? Yum!
Leave out, swap, or increase the spices as you see fit. If you’d prefer a spicy low carb chili keto recipe, then crank up the chili powder! You can even add jalapenos before you simmer.
How to Make Low Carb Chili
Alright friends, let’s get cooking! I hope this low carb chili recipe atkins would approve of will keep you warm and cozy all year round. What toppings did you add to your low carb chili? Did you try any variations? Let me know in the comments below!
Low Carb Chili
- 2 Pounds Ground Beef , 80/20
- Vegetable Oil , as needed
- 2 Cups Yellow Onions , chopped
- 1 Bell Pepper
- 2 Tablespoons Garlic , minced
- 1 Tablespoon Cayenne Pepper , more if you like spice!
- 2 Tablespoons Ground Cumin
- 1 Tablespoon Smoked Paprika
- 1 Tablespoons Oregano
- 2 Teaspoons Salt
- 2 Teaspoons Black Pepper
- 2 Bay Leaves
- 2 - 14 oz Cans Diced Tomatoes , no salt added
- 2 1/2 Cups Chicken Broth
Add beef to a large saucepan and cook on medium heat.
Break the meat up with a wooden spoon as you brown.
Once meat is no longer pink, pull it out of the pan and place it on a paper towel lined plate to remove any excess grease, leaving grease in the pan (if there isn’t enough grease left, add some vegetable oil).
Add onions and bell peppers. Cook until onions are translucent and soft.
Add garlic, cayenne pepper, cumin, paprika, and oregano. Stir until fragrant (about 1 minute).
Add meat back to pan with salt, pepper, diced tomatoes, chicken broth, and bay leaves.
Bring contents of the pan to an aggressive simmer, and simmer uncovered for 1 hour, 45 minutes to 2 hours — or until the sauce is thick (see note below).
- ** Cook times vary based on the size of your pot, the type of pot, your burners and the type of simmer. The time listed above is how long is took me to cook the chili until most of the liquid evaporated. You may need to cook it longer to achieve the same results.
- This chili isn't super spicy. If you like spice add more cayenne pepper.
- To cut some carbs: Add less onion. The bell pepper can be left out.
Nutrition information will vary based on the specific products. To be safe, check the nutrition facts labels of your products. Optional object listed above have been left out of nutritional data.
low carb chili brands
Those of you looking for a low carb chili canned to grab from the store, here are the best options I’ve found, although both of these are considerably higher in carbs than this low carb chili recipe!