4.96 from 146 votes

Wendy’s Chili Recipe

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Wendy’s Chili Recipe, a delicious and easy copycat chili, this fast food joint favorite is perfect when you just cannot make the drive.

Delicious and hearty for winter weather, this chili is spiced up fantastically and full of savory beef and beans in every bite.

a close up of chili recipe in a ladle.

Why you will love making Wendy’s Chili at home!

Copyright recipes can be really hard – most companies don’t exactly print out their secrets, so it can take a bit to get it right. But this Copycat Wendy’s Chili is pretty close and fits the bill when you are wanting a homemade meal with fast food flavor.

With tons of amazing spices, beans (great source of protein!), and of course savory beef, you cannot go wrong snuggled on the couch with a bowl of chili.

Copycat Wendy’s Chili Recipe

Wendy’s Copycat Chili can be made in a stock pot and takes about an hour from start to finish if you stovetop.

You could easily translate this to a slow cooker Wendy’s Copycat Chili Recipe by browning the meat prior and putting all ingredients into a slow cooker and setting on low for 6-8 hours.

Ingredients

  • Lean ground beef
  • Fresh: Onion, Celery stalk, Green pepper,
  • Pantry: Cooking Oil, Dry chili seasoning, White vinegar
  • Canned: Rotel (tomatoes with green chilies), Stewed tomatoes, Kidney beans, Pinto beans, Tomato sauce
ingredients in a collage.

Brown beef before beginning chili recipe

Add ground beef, onion, celery, green pepper and cooking oil in a large stock pot and cook until hamburger is browned, about 8-10 minutes. Salt and Pepper beef to taste.

If your meat has too much grease, drain before going on into the next step. Grease is more of a preference thing.

I like to use 80/20 beef because the extra fat gives it extra flavor but when making soups and chili’s, if you do not drain before adding liquids, can def add a layer of grease on the top. I will leave that up to you.

flavor beef in stock pot with veggies and brown beef

How to make Wendy’s Chili at Home

  1. In a large stock pot, heat 1 tablespoon of oil over medium heat. Add 1 lb of lean ground beef, 1 diced small onion, 1 diced stalk of celery, and 1 chopped small green pepper. Cook for 8-10 minutes until the beef is thoroughly browned. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Drain any excess grease if necessary.
  2. To the pot, add one 10 oz can of Rotel (tomatoes with green chilies), one 28 oz can of stewed tomatoes, one 14 oz can of undrained kidney beans, one 14 oz can of undrained pinto beans, one 14 oz can of tomato sauce, and one 1.25 oz packet of dry chili seasoning. Stir well to combine.
  3. Increase the heat to medium-high and bring the mixture to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to low, cover, and let it simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
  4. Stir in 1 tablespoon of white vinegar just before serving.
  5. Serve the chili hot, optionally topped with shredded cheddar cheese and serve with a copycat wendy’s frosty.
Wendy's Copycat Chili Recipe done and ready to serve

MAKE YOUR CHILI BETTER

Everyone likes their chili differently and while this recipe is more authentic by itself, I personally enjoy mine like this.

  • Use the recipe above BUT also add (1) can of Wolf Brand Chili (no beans) and one extra pound of cooked ground beef.
  • Add minced garlic while cooking the beef ( I use about 1 tablespoon per pound of beef). This will make your chili super thick, and I love the can of Wolf Brand chili in mine because of the flavors.
  • If your chili is TOO thick, just add about 1/4th cup of water or beef stock at a time.
cheese on chili topped in bowl for Wendy's Copycat Chili Recipe

Suggested Chili Toppings

  • Diced Onions – dice and cut up mini onions. My store actually carries these pre-cut for quick serves like this.
  • Shredded Cheddar Cheese
  • Sour Cream – a dollop will do ya!
  • Serve with Tortilla Chips – we skip the spoon around here and serve all our chili’s and Mexican soups with tortilla chips. My kids like to use them to dip out the chili but my husband likes to crunch his up and put on the top of the chili.

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4.96 from 146 votes

Wendy’s Chili Recipe (Copycat)


Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Wendy's Copycat Chili Recipe, a delicious and easy copycat chili recipe, perfect for winter weather – make on stove top or slow cooker – Amazing, hearty, savory and so yummy.

Ingredients
 

  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1 small onion diced
  • 1 stalk celery diced
  • 1 small green pepper chopped
  • 1 tablespoon cooking oil
  • 10 oz. Rotel tomatoes with green chilies
  • 28 oz. stewed tomatoes
  • 14 oz. kidney beans do not drain
  • 14 oz. pinto beans do not drain
  • 14 oz. tomato sauce
  • 1.25 oz. dry chili seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar

Instructions

  • Add ground beef, diced onion, diced celery, chopped green pepper and cooking oil in a large stock pot and cook until hamburger is browned, about 8-10 minutes. Seasoning generously with salt and black pepper. Drain grease if necessarily. Heat over medium high heat until boiling.
  • To the same pan as cooked beef, canned Rotel, stewed tomatoes, undrained kidney and pinto beans, tomato sauce and packet of dry chili seasoning and mix together well.
  • Reduce heat to simmer and cover for 1 hour.
  • Stir in white vinegar after the hour is done.
  • Serve chili topped with shredded cheddar cheese and enjoy!

Notes

MAKE YOUR CHILI BETTER
I personally enjoy mine like this. Use the recipe above BUT also add (1) can of Wolf Brand Chili (no beans) and 1 extra pound of cooked ground beef.
Add minced garlic while cooking the beef (I use about 1 tablespoon per one pound of beef). This will make your chili super thick and I love the can of Wolf Brand chili in mine because of the flavors.
TOO THICK? If your chili is TOO thick, just add about 1/4th cup of water or beef stock till desired thin/thickness is reached.
TOPPINGS Don’t forget the toppings – diced onions, cheese, sour cream or enjoy dipping with tortilla chips.

Nutrition

Serving: 1 | Calories: 338kcal | Carbohydrates: 37g | Protein: 27g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 51mg | Sodium: 736mg | Fiber: 10g | Sugar: 7g

Nutritional Disclaimer: The nutritional data provided here is auto-calculated and intended for your convenience only. As it’s generated via automation, its accuracy may be compromised. For precise nutritional insight, please compute the values utilizing the actual ingredients in your recipe through your chosen nutrition calculator or application.

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4.96 from 146 votes
4.96 from 146 votes (145 ratings without comment)

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16 Comments

  1. Sharon Bowman says:

    Great recipe, my family loved and not only went back for seconds, but thirds as well. I

    1. Sharon, thank you for sharing! I am so glad you enjoyed my chili recipe!!

  2. Colleen D. says:

    So easy and so delicious!

    1. So glad you enjoyed!

  3. Fix your site!
    Cannot get to wendys recipe

    1. Its not my site, I can see the recipe fine. I would check another browser or internet access that you are on. Its in the post and in the recipe card both.

  4. Out of curiosity, what does the vinegar for? Little bit of acidic flavor? I’m going to try out the recipe today. Its cold and rainy here in Texas. Good day for some chili.

    1. It compliments most chilis – some people like balsamic actually at the end and brings (like you guessed) a little bit of acid.

    2. Thank you! Making now. Happy New Year ❤

  5. Hi Trisha, I am wanting to make your chili, but in the crockpot! How long would you suggest leaving it in the crockpot?

    Thanks in advance!

    -Lauren

    1. Lauren, cook the meat first before you combine into crock pot. We have done other chili in the crockpot but not this recipe but typically it takes about 4 hours to combine the spices and warm properly.

  6. Not fond of stewed tomatoes, can they be replaced?

    1. Trisha Haas says:

      You can replace with more rotel tomatoes if you like those.

  7. Billy Jo Burnette says:

    This was the BEST !!!! Tasted spot on, good job. Thank you for sharing your recipe with us, you sure have made alot of people happy!!!

  8. This is spot on. Glad I tried it.

  9. Kathy Egbert says:

    Wonderful chili, made per recipe and it’s perfect. Thank you so much.

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