Crock Pot Boozy Bison and Sweet Potato Chili

Crock pot bison and sweet potato chili with a whisky infusion. This bean-free chili is vegetable-infused and is perfect for those on a restricted diet. Just don’t forget to top with sour cream or cheese…because: yolo.

Crock Pot Boozy Bison and Sweet Potato Chili - bean-free and gluten-free and can easily be made paleo by omitting the booze. | #healthy #glutenfree #dinner #slowcooker #recipe

Greetings from the snowy Sierra Nevada!

We had a small break in weather on Monday, but the precip came back in full force on Tuesday. Thankfully, this storm is colder than the last, so our mountains are blanketed in snow fluff while Reno is getting a rain/snow combo. I’m anxious for the weekend, when I can pop on my split board and hit the back country. Powder? Fresh and thick. Photo ops? Aplenty. Gravity? On fleek. Avi danger? High AF.

When it comes to snowy weather food, my numero uno is chili. Nothing, I repeat, nada beats a hearty bowl of chili. Particularly when some sort of mixology of magical special ingredients has been included in on the fun. Speaking of magical special ingredients…

You know what I’ve been adding to my all my chilis lately? Booze. I used to add red wine, which is pretty savage in and of itself, but whisky? MEGA. I also add a touch of pure maple syrup to round out the whisky bite and the spice.

Crock Pot Boozy Bison and Sweet Potato Chili - bean-free and gluten-free and can easily be made paleo by omitting the booze. | #healthy #glutenfree #dinner #slowcooker #recipe

The idea behind this chili is it’s legume (bean)-free for those who are doing a paleo or whole30 stint this month. If need be, omit the whisky to keep this compliant with any alcohol-free shindig you’ve gotten yourself into. Basically, this chili is a meat and vegetables affair for clean eating, with ultra comforting overtones and lots of spice undertones. If you’re not into bison, no biggy – you can use ground beef, elk, turkey, pork, sausage, and/or a combination thereof.

Sweet potatoes. If you’re averse to them, you can omit them altogether or replace them with some other vegetation situation. For instance, red potato or russet potato (if you aren’t on a starch diet), corn, quinoa, eggplant, etc. The sweet potatoes do taste sweet, just bear this in mind when you set out to meal prep.

Speaking of meal prep, have you all been following the Healthy Vegetarian Meal Plans I’ve been posting each Saturday? Even if you aren’t vegetarian (I’m not…in case the bison didn’t tip you off), the meal plans are exceedingly handy. Plus, animal protein can easily be added to any of the meals. Just a little food for thought when meal planning healthy eats and budgeting.

Other tips to knock this chili out of the park? Here are a few:

  • No need to brown the meat prior to adding it to the crock pot.
  • If you have the extra time, saute the onion until brownes prior to adding it to the crock pot for a deep caramelized flavor.
  • Rather than breaking up the ground meat, place the whole hunk in the crock – taking this approach will ensure the meat stays moist and tender and prevents that grainy texture that comes with overly manhandled ground meat.
  • Add/substitute any of the veggies to your heart’s desire.
  • Add kidney, chili, black, or garbanzo beans to your heart’s desire.
  • Omit the whisky to keep the recipe paleo or Whole30 compliant

Crock Pot Boozy Bison and Sweet Potato Chili - bean-free and gluten-free and can easily be made paleo by omitting the booze. | #healthy #glutenfree #dinner #slowcooker #recipe

Just chill, bro.

Crock Pot Boozy Bison and Sweet Potato Chili - bean-free and gluten-free and can easily be made paleo by omitting the booze. | #healthy #glutenfree #dinner #slowcooker #recipe

Crock Pot Boozy Bison and Sweet Potato Chili

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 8 hours
Total Time: 8 hours 15 minutes
Author: Julia


  • 1 14- ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 1 pound ground bison or ground meat of choice
  • 1 inch large sweet potato chopped into 1 chunks
  • 1 yellow onion finely chopped
  • 1 large carrot peeled and chopped
  • 1 pasilla or bell pepper chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic minced
  • 6 baby bella mushrooms quartered
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 3 tablespoons chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon Garam Masala seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt to taste
  • 3 tablespoons whisky
  • 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup


  1. Add the ingredients to the crock pot in the order they appear. Leave the ground bison (or ground meat of choice) as is, without breaking up the meat. Gently stir the contents of the crock pot.
  2. Cover the crock pot and cook on the lowest setting for 8 hours, or until the sweet potato is cooked through. After 5 or 6 hours, break up the meat using a wooden spoon or spatula and stir well.
  3. Taste chili for flavor. If desired, add more seasoning and/or salt. For a thinner consistency, add more broth.
  4. Serve chili with desired toppings, and enjoy!

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  1. Sarah @ Making Thyme for Health

    I’m so envious of your winter wonderland! The pics on your IG make me swoon so hard. It snowed here and it was just enough to cover my car. Such a tease!

    This chili looks like the perfect cozy winter meal. Reminds me that I need to bust out my slow cooker soon!

    1. Julia Post author

      I wish you were here to see it! I’m loving it right now, but I’ll probably be jonesing for a snow-free zone by the end of the winter… at which point GA will be sounding mighty fine!

  2. marcie

    We were in the snow over new years and it was beautiful! Now we’re just being flooded with rain — it’s crazy! I have the biggest craving for chili and this just sent it into overdrive. I’ve used beer and hard apple cider in chili, but never whisky — that has to taste incredible! I definitely need to add this to my list of must-makes!

    1. Julia Post author

      The uuuge amount of precip has been crazy! Funny how Mother Nature decided to give it to us all at once. Definitely hoping the flooding doesn’t do too much damage, but I’m happy we’re finally getting some much-needed water.

  3. Food

    When you have snowy weather, this food is the best option for you to have and enjoy the weather as well. This is perfect dish for those who are on special diet.

  4. Nicole

    What would your instapot instructions be for this. It’s already 3 pm, so no time for crockpot :-). Thanks!


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