Copycat Wendy’s chili is so filling and comforting. Best of all it can easily be made in your crockpot or slow cooker!
When we lived in Houston, I lived right by a Wendy’s. When my son was a baby, he had colic and didn’t sleep much. I couldn’t get much done back in those days so I went through the Wendy’s drive thru a lot. I’ve had my fair share of chili (I always ask for onions and cheese) from Wendy’s!
It is said that the chili at Wendy’s is made from hamburger patties but I just used regular ground beef and it worked out great. It usually comes with a few saltine crackers. You can also get it topped with cheese and onions.
💭 Why you’ll love this recipe
This recipe is easy to make at home and best of all your crockpot will do all the hard work for you! It is a wonderful recipe to make for dinner and great for big game day parties too.
🍲 Ingredients Needed
For this recipe, you will need:
- Ground beef: I used 85/15 and drained off the fat.
- Celery and white onion: The base of our chili.
- Canned stewed tomatoes: You’ll want to run these through a food processor before adding them to the mix.
- Canned diced tomatoes: Such as Rotel.
- Tomato paste: You’ll need just two tablespoons.
- Water: To prevent the chili from drying out since it will be in your crockpot.
- Chili powder, cumin, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, onion powder: To season our chili with.
- Kidney beans and pinto beans: To make the chili hearty.
- White vinegar: This will help mellow the chili out.
- Salt and pepper: I always recommend salt and pepper to taste since brands of canned beans can have varying levels of salt.
You will also need a crockpot (six quart or larger) and a food processor.
💬 What size crockpot or slow cooker is needed for this recipe?
For this recipe you will want to use a six quart or larger crockpot.
🥣 How to make this recipe
In a large skillet, brown and then drain the fat off of your ground beef. Set aside.
Spray your crockpot with non-stick spray.
Finely dice your white onion and celery. Run your stewed tomatoes through a food processor until they are no longer whole.
Open your beans and rinse and drain them.
Combine all of your ingredients in your crockpot and stir well.
Cook on low for 6 to 8 hours or on high for 4 hours.
🧀 What toppings go on Wendy’s chili?
The original Wendy’s chili is topped with cheese and onions (they usually ask when you’re ordering) and served with saltine crackers. You could also do corn chips, corn bread, oyster crackers, sour cream, freshly sliced avocado, or whatever else you like with your chili. I know some people really enjoy a good cinnamon roll with a bowl of chili, I haven’t tried it yet but it does sound good.
👩🏻🍳 Tips for making this recipe:
- Brown your ground beef before putting it in your crockpot. If you don’t brown it before, the meat will be strange and lumpy.
- Drain your beans and rinse them.
- Be sure to run the stewed tomatoes through a food processor or cut them with a knife before adding them to the chili.
- Let this chili simmer on low for 6 to 8 hours for the best results.
📋 Recipe FAQs
Brown raw hamburger before putting it in your crockpot or slow cooker. If you don’t brown it before, the meat will be lumpy and can taste strange. It will also be very greasy.
You can leave chili on low for up to 8 hours. You may want to add a little extra water (like ½ cup).
They do not use cooked leftover hamburgers but they use hamburger patties for their chili.
Other great copycat recipes:
Copycat Wendy’s Chili in the Crockpot
- Crockpot or slow cooker (6 quart or larger)
- food processor
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 rib celery (one single piece, not the entire celery bunch) stems and end removed
- 1 large white onion
- 1 can stewed tomatoes about 14.5 ounces
- 1 can diced tomatoes with green chiles (such as Rotel) about 10 ounces
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- ½ cup water
- 1 can kidney beans about 15 ounces
- 1 can pinto beans about 15 ounces
- 2 teaspoons white vinegar
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 pinch cayenne pepper
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- salt and pepper to taste
- shredded cheese
- diced onion
- In a large skillet, brown and then drain the fat off of your ground beef. Set aside.
- Spray your crockpot with non-stick spray.
- Finely dice your white onion and celery.
- Run your stewed tomatoes through a food processor until they are no longer whole.
- Open your beans and rinse and drain them.
- Combine all of your ingredients in your crockpot and stir well.
- Cook on low for 6 to 8 hours or on high for 4 hours.