Beef and Lentil Chili

Beef and lentil chili is easy to prepare and is so comforting during the fall and winter months. This easy-to-prepare healthy dinner recipe requires just one pot and about 1 hour to make.

 Beef and Lentil Chili - Beanless chili made with ground beef, lentils and vegetables for a hearty, delicious meal |

Chili lovers, what’s your chili theory? We all have preferences! Thick and meaty, soupy and vegetable-packed, spicy, mild, loaded with toppings, bean-ful or bean-less…what type of chili do you love the most?

While I’m always up for a classic bowl of chili, I can also dabble in all sorts of renditions – it is just that attractive to me! Take my Instant Pot Paleo Pumpkin Chili, Crock Pot Citrus Pork Chili , Loaded Turkey Chili, Crock Pot Boozy Bison and Sweet Potato Chili, and Crock Pot White Chicken Chili for example.

All have a unique spin off the usual, but all so tantalizingly delicious!

Recipe Highlights:

  • Gluten-free and grain-free
  • Bean-less
  • Comforting, filling, hearty
  • An easy one-pot meal
  • Perfect for make-ahead dinners or lunches

It had not dawned on me to make chili with lentils until somewhat recently. I know a lot of folks (myself included) have trouble digesting beans but can tolerate lentils like champs! 

This beef and lentil chili recipe is a home run! Flavorful, hearty, packed with both quality protein and fiber, you’re looking at a cozy meal that’s great for the whole family and can be made in advance or any night of the week.

Let’s get into it!

Beef and Lentil Chili - Beanless chili made with ground beef, lentils and vegetables for a hearty, delicious meal | TheRoastedRoot.netHow to Make Beef and Lentil Chili

Heat the avocado oil in a large pot or dutch oven over medium heat. Add the chopped onion and saute, stirring occasionally, until onion is translucent, about 3 to 5 minutes.

Place the hunk of ground beef on the hot surface and cook (without breaking it into chunks) for 2 to 3 minutes, until browned. Carefully flip and cook another 2 to 3 minutes to get a sear on two sides.

Use a spatula to break up the beef, then add the chopped carrot and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, until garlic is fragrant, about 2 minutes.

Add the remaining ingredients to the pot, stir well, and cover. Bring to a full boil. Reduce heat to a simmer, and cook, stirring occasionally, until lentils reach desired done-ness, about 30 minutes.

Serve chili with your favorite toppings!

Note: You can continue cooking the chili at a simmer for up to 1 hour to maximize the flavor.

Instant Pot Instructions:

Follow all of the same instructions above, using your pressure cooker to do the sauteeing and meat searing.

Once all of the ingredients are inside of the pressure cooker, secure the lid, and pressure cook on high for 15 minutes. Leave the vent sealed while pressure cooking, and manually release when you’re release once the time is up.

You can also allow the pressure cooker (or Instant Pot) to go into the ‘Keep Warm’ mode for 15 to 45 minutes after it has finished pressure cooking in order to maximize the flavor

What Type of Beef Should I Use?:

I always use grass-fed ground beef. Grass-fed is a great source of omega-3 fats, iron, and protein. An added bonus, is it tastes better than grain-fed beef (in my opinion).

I source all of my beef from ButcherBox, which serves up grass-fed, grass-finished beef as well as heritage pork, organic chicken, and wild Alaskan salmon. In addition to the fact that the beef is never grain-fed, I love that there are no added hormones or antibiotics, the convenience factor (it’s delivered right to your door), and the fact that it’s affordable! It’s really just clean, great tasting beef! I simply place an order whenever I’m running low on animal protein to keep my freezer stocked. 

ButcherBox often runs promotions and deals. For instance, all new customers receive 2 pounds of FREE GROUND BEEF in every single order for the entire duration of their subscription. That’s a lot of beef, friends! Check them out HERE!

Beef and Lentil Chili - Beanless chili made with ground beef, lentils and vegetables for a hearty, delicious meal |

Tips For Making THE BEST Chili:

  • I find a combination of diced tomatoes and fresh make for a winning, fresh tasting chili
  • Don’t skimp on the spices – the majority of the flavor in chili comes from the seasoning! 
  • The longer the chili cooks or sits, the more flavorful it will become. I like to prepare chili the day or night before serving it to allow more flavor to open up
  • Adding ¼ cup to ⅓ cup of dry red wine gives chili additional robust flavor!

Recipe Adaptations:

  • Replace all of the seasonings with 3 tablespoons of chili powder
  • Omit the onion and garlic to make recipe low-FODMAP
  • For a bit of a sweet counterbalance, add 1 tablespoon of pure maple syrup.bee
  • Replace the can of diced tomatoes with 2 additional vine-ripened tomatoes
  • Use ground turkey instead of ground beef.

My cookbook, Paleo Power Bowls, is now available! CLICK HERE to check it out. Thank you for your support!

If you make this Beef and Lentil Chili, please feel free to share a photo and tag @TheRoastedRoot on Instagram!

Beef and Lentil Chili - Beanless chili made with ground beef, lentils and vegetables for a hearty, delicious meal |

Beef and Lentil Chili

Beanless chili with ground beef and lentils!


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Beef and Lentil Chili