Chili is one of my favorite fall and winter foods, but it’s great all year round. Chili is usually reserved for weekends since I like to let it sit and simmer all day before eating, but since I’m working from home today, we’re having chili!
It’s a snap to make, but requires some spices that you may not usually have on hand, depending on how much time you spend in your kitchen. Once you have them, they usually go quite a long way.
1.5lb 80/20 ground beef
1lb ground pork
2 bell peppers, whatever color you like (I use a red and a yellow)
2 onions (I use a yellow and a red)
1 28 ounce can of crushed tomatoes
1 can black or pinto beans
4 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons cumin powder
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1 tablespoon paprika
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon red pepper (ground, not flakes)
Let’s start with our veggies! I like to use a red and yellow pepper, and a yellow and red onion.
Chop up your veggies into chunks. I like my chili to have nice size pieces of veggies left after cooking. If you like a finer dice, then by all means have at it! Chop chop chop, and then add to a large, heavy bottomed pot.
Aren’t the colors just pretty?! Love it. They just scream FALL! (and usually football, too. KILL ME! GO RAMS!)
It’s time to get these guys working on the stove. Add in 2 tablespoons of olive oil and 2 teaspoons of salt. Give a big stir, and let the veggies sweat and soften over medium heat. You don’t want them fully cooked, but just to the point of starting to soften up. This will be cooking on low for a few hours, so we want them to have some life in them still
Once softened, it’s time to add the meat and a few of the spices. Bring your heat up to medium high, and add in your ground beef and ground pork. Break it up a bit with your spoon, and stir around into your veg. At this point, I like to get some seasoning into the meat, so I add in 1 tablespoon of chili powder, 1 teaspoon of garlic powder, and 1 teaspoon of garlic salt. Continue to cook over medium high heat until your beef and pork are cooked through. Once cooked, lower the heat down to low.
Now you are going to add in the rest of your spices: the remaining chili powder, garlic powder, cumin, paprika, red pepper, onion powder…and whatever else I missed Give everything a few good stirs to combine everything thoroughly.
Starting to look like chili, isn’t it? Smelling like it too, I’ll bet!
Ok…next step. Open your can of crushed tomatoes, and pour about half in. I would’ve said to use a smaller can, but sometimes you need a little more liquid. Start out slow though – you can always add more, but it’s not as easy to take it away. As your chili cooks, the liquid will tend to pool at the top, so while it looks pretty thick starting out, you’ll see that it really is quite a lot of tomato. If you need more, adjust as you cook. I usually use about 18 ounces total, give or take.
Open your beans, and strain and rinse them. I use about 2/3 can. I *LOVE* beans…love, love LOVE them. If you don’t like them, or aren’t in love with them like me, then you can totally leave them out. It’s probably the greatest chili debate…with beans, or without? I’m 100% in the WITH BEANS camp. Adjust as you see fit. My totals will include the counts for it both ways. Beans are a little “spendy” in the carbs department, but at my house, it isn’t chili without them.
Stir, stir, stir. Turn your heat down to low, slap a cover on the pot, and ignore it. Or at least try to. It’ll smell to delicious to forget about. Get up and give it a stir every 30 minutes or so. I like to let mine go at least 2 hours, but it’s ready to go after about 30 minutes. The longer you have, the better it’ll taste. The spices really sink in and blossom the longer you can hold off from digging in.
Bowl your chili up, top with sour cream and cheese if you please, and dig in!
Nutritional breakdown (8 servings)
- Carbs : 19 g, or 11.5 net (with beans)
- Protein: 37.2 g
- Fat: 28.1 g
- Fiber: 6.2 g
- Calories: 477
If you do not add the beans, you can subtract 3.75g net carbs, 2.2g protein, no fat, and 34.4 calories.