Wendy’s Copycat Chili Recipe

Wendy’s chili is amazing, but if you’re like me, you can’t be bothered to go out and grab it some days – no matter how badly you want to. And for me, Wendy’s is a haul (about 45 minutes), so if I want to snuggle up with their chili in a snowstorm… well, I can’t. Not until now, that is.

Wendy’s chili uses beef patties that didn’t make it into their burgers, and while I think it’s important to fry the beef as patties to give the chili some different textures, but it’s definitely easier to just fry the ground beef in non-patty form if you’re not feeling cooking. Additionally, if you’re running tight on time, you can cook it for less than an hour and 20 minutes, but the flavors don’t meld together quite as well that way.


This recipe is a great source of fiber, protein, iron, and potassium!


Serves Prep Time Cook Time Total Time
10 15 min 1 h 20 min 1 h 35 min



  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 2 lb. ground beef
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 1 onion
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • 42 oz. canned stewed tomatoes
  • 10 oz. canned diced tomatoes with green chiles
  • 14 oz. can tomato sauce
  • 1 cup water
  • 5 oz. chili seasoning (2 packs)
  • 14 oz. canned kidney beans
  • 14 oz. canned pinto beans
  • salt and pepper (to taste)
  • 1 tbs white vinegar (or to taste)



  1. Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Press ground beef into pan to form one large patty. Let the bottom brown for 8 to 10 minutes. Break the ground beef into crumbles and cook until no longer pink, about 5 minutes.
  2. While you’re waiting for your beef to cook, wash and chop your produce. Slice onion in half and mince into small chunks. Dice the green pepper into 1/2 in. sections, and slice celery into ½ in sections.
  3. Stir celery, onion, and green bell pepper into ground beef. Cook until onion is softened, about 5 minutes.
  4. Add stewed tomatoes, diced tomatoes with green chiles, tomato sauce, water, and chili seasoning.
  5. Mix kidney beans and pinto beans into chili, season with salt and black pepper, and bring to a boil until fragrant, 1 – 2 minutes. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 1 hour.
  6. Mix vinegar into chili before serving.



Calories 535
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 10.1g 13%
Saturated Fat 2.7g 14%
Cholesterol 81mg 27%
Sodium 614mg 27%
Total Carbohydrate 63.3g 23%
Dietary Fiber 15.1g 54%
Total Sugars 8.8g  
Protein 48g  
Vitamin D 0mcg 0%
Calcium 111mg 9%
Iron 23mg 126%
Potassium 1994mg 42%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calorie a day is used for general nutrition advice.



  • Top with tortilla strips, cheese, sour cream, green onions, hot sauce – or all of the above!
  • The extra chili freezes well so you can make a full batch and have an emergency dinner in the freezer if needed.
  • Stores well in the refrigerator for up to 5 days, in the freezer for up to 2 months.

Join the Conversation


  1. Mina Wilkinson says:

    I tried this and it really really tastes just like Wendy’s chilli.

  2. Faiz Bush says:

    Honestly i gave this recipe a shot but I didn’t enjoy it but will give try another.

  3. Carol Wilkins says:

    What a copycat :-D. My husband and i sat and enjoyed this with a glass of wine.

  4. Nathan Hayward says:

    I had no canned tomatoes at home so i used tomato juice and one pack of chilli seasoning… cooked well though.

  5. Geraldine Stevens says:

    I prepared mine in my slow cooker intstead of a large pot this still came out delicious, i also went for seconds lol

  6. Walter Mackenzie says:

    With me being a vegan i didnt include ground beef but used lentils as an alternative and trust me guys came out great.

  7. Yaseen Durham says:

    Homemade Wendy’s chilli recipe, there is nothing better than this.

  8. Usmaan Archer says:

    I also dumped in some chilli peppers and bam! Went straight to my tummy! I enjoyed this!

  9. Nazia Houghton says:

    With no experience of cooking, I wanted to know how to make this for my boyfriend on his birthday and i stumbled upon this here and surprisingly he enjoyed it. Shout out to you and this great recipe!

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