I love chili in just about every iteration (chicken chili, veggie chili, beef chili, butternut squash chili…), and I make at least two big batches a month during the winter. It comes together so easily, everyone loves it, and nothing is better after an afternoon of playing in the snow than a big bowl of hot chili. This is my go-to version that I could do in my sleep. Make a big batch soon!
- 2 onions, diced
- 2-3 tbsp fat of your choice (I used grapeseed oil)
- 1 pound happily-raised ground beef
- Optional: diced sweet peppers
- 6 cloves garlic, smashed
- 2 tbsp cumin
- 1/4 cup chili powder
- 2 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1 jalapeno or cayenne pepper, sliced thinly
- 12 ounces beer (I like browns or ambers best)
- 1 quart stock (preferably homemade)
- 3 cups cooked beans (about two 15-ounce cans if you're using canned beans). I use whatever is frozen and ready to go from the freezer - pinto, black, kidney, navy beans. Kidney beans are my favorite for chili though.
- 2 tbsp (about half a six-ounce can) tomato paste
- 28 ounces diced tomatoes (or a quart if you're using your own canned version)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Optional garnishes: tortilla chips, shredded cheddar cheese, sour cream, cilantro, jalapenos
- In a large pot, heat the oil, and then add the onions (and peppers, if using). Cook on medium-high heat. Once the onions have softened up (about 5-7 minutes), add the ground beef. Break up until it is about 75% browned (but not entirely browned - the not-browned meat with stay more tender throughout the remaining cooking time).
- Add the tomato paste, garlic, seasonings, and hot pepper. Stir briefly to thoroughly combine the ingredients.
- Add the beer, diced tomatoes, and beans. Turn the heat down to low and let simmer with the top on the pot for about 30 minutes.
- Salt and pepper to taste. Add garnishes if desired, and serve.
- The chili, like most soups, tastes better the second and third day. It also freezes beautifully. Just let it cool, put it in a freezer-safe container, and pop it in the freezer for an easy meal on a busy day.
I sometimes make this for Meatless Monday and just double the beans and leave out the meat (and add some sweet peppers where indicated if I have some).
What’s your favorite chili recipe?