How to Fix a Watery Chili

eHow may earn compensation through affiliate links in this story. Learn more about our affiliate and product review process here.

Things You'll Need

  • Long spoon

  • ½ cup of tomato paste (or white beans for white chili)

  • ¼ cup of cornstarch

  • 1 tbsp. water

Fix watery chili so you can serve up a successful batch.

A big pot of chili can make for a hearty, scrumptious meal. Chili is also a favorite as it can cater to any taste with the number of different vegetables, meats and spices you can add to it. When making chili, sometimes it can become watery and lose that signature thickness. Learning how to fix watered-down chili can ensure your next pot is one all will enjoy.


Step 1

Cook the chili in your slow cooker or on the stove on medium heat for an hour without a lid. Sometimes, all it takes is time to cook off the excess wateriness. Test the chili after this time and, if it is still too watery, continue cooking.

Video of the Day

Step 2

Add 1/2 cup tomato paste to your chili and stir well. Let it cook on low heat for 30 minutes so the paste can mix in, then test. If the chili is still not to your liking, continue cooking, otherwise serve and enjoy. If your chili is white add 1/2 cup of white beans instead of tomato paste.

Step 3

Mix ¼ cup of cornstarch with 1 tbsp. of cold water water. Cornstarch is a great thickener as it won't compromise flavor. Add the mixture to your chili and stir, then let cook for another half an hour and test.

Step 4

Mix another ¼ cup of cornstarch with 1 tbsp. of water and add it. Cook for another 30 minutes and test. Continue adding cornstarch mixture and testing after 30 minutes until chili is to your desired thickness. Only add cornstarch in small ¼ cup increments as you don't want the chili to become too thick.


Flour can be used in place of cornstarch to thicken your dish. If you are a veggie lover, try adding ½ cup of whatever veggies are in the chili to it. Be wary of adding too many veggies as you don’t want it to turn into a veggie soup or casserole. Try this method with meats in your chili too, but remember, adding veggies or meats will affect the flavor a little.


Video of the Day