Originally Posted by jennyema
IMO fresh tomatoes are wasted on chili. Too much seasoning. Covers up the taste of the tomatoes. One of the things where canned works better.
But, if you are growing your own tomatoes, they're free, you probably have a ton of them, and the containers (vines) go right back into the soil as compost, not into the local land fill.
jamoehope, just soak and cook the beans ahead of time, brown your chili meat, squish your tomatoes, then combine everything in the crockpot to cook together. Just remember that, with a crockpot, there is no evaporation, so use less liquid than you would when cooking your chili in a pot on top of the stove. If, after a few hours in the crockpot, you find your chili is too watery, smash up a bunch of the beans to add thickness.