Chili is one of my favorite cool weather foods. It is so hearty and warm. Plus, I can dip some chips in it during a season when fresh salsa is not really possible.
I am from western Pennsylvania. It is a place where many months of the year are cool and rainy. Sometimes we even have a good bit of snow. Here, we tend to eat our chili with beans. I don’t know why, but that is the way that it is served. I like it that way. I know that some people do not feel that it is still chili once beans hit the pot however, that is the way it is here. I can enjoy a bowl of chili minus beans, it just isn’t the warm, hearty dish that I crave in the cool months of winter. So, I add beans. Lots of them. You don’t have to, we can still get along.
I have been making chili for years. I never really had a recipe. My method was to smell the spices in my cabinet and decide how much I wanted my chili to taste like that smell. It worked well for me. The problem was that it was a lot of work that only I could do. I decided to measure my ingredients and develop a standard recipe. That is what I am sharing. I will warn you, we like our chili to be spicy. If you don’t, you may want to use different peppers.
I like to add a few jalapeños, a few really hot peppers from the farmers market, a few poblanos, and some other peppers that I bought at the farmers market. I want my chili to be loaded with peppers (and beans).
I start my chili by heating some oil in my dutch oven (it is about 8 quarts). I add about 1/2 of an onion, diced and cook until translucent.
While the onion is cooking, I prep my poblano peppers by charring them under the broiler (about 20 minutes, 10 per side) and placing them in a bag. I set them aside for about 20 minutes to allow the skin to loosen.
I chop the peppers while the onions are cooking. I used jalapeños, red cubanelle peppers, and some other very tiny hot peppers this time because that is what was available at the farmers market. If you do not like hot chili, use regular green peppers. It still turns out delicious.
Add the peppers to the hot pan and cook until tender. When the peppers are done, add the ground beef (about 2 pounds, more or less dependent on your taste). Cook until browned. Take a moment after the meat is browned to salt, only a pinch or two.
Add the spices. Most of my spices are from Penzy’s. You could really use a packet. I did that when I first started cooking and it was always good. Add beef bouillon. I like to use Organic Better Than Bouillon because it does not contain MSG. Stir to combine.
Add the fire roasted tomatoes, crushed tomatoes and beans. Fill the tomato cans with water to remove remaining tomatoes from the sides. Add the water to the pot.
Simmer for at least 30 minutes. I like to cook it all day on medium low or in the oven, with the lid on the dutch oven for 3-4 hours at 250 degrees. I check it frequently to make sure all of the liquid has not evaporated.
Serve it with your favorite toppings. It freezes well.
Chili With Beans
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour-all day
Keywords: bake Simmer soup/stew entree snack beef Super Bowl fall winter
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 1/2 onion, diced
- 3-5 poblano peppers
- 9 red cubanelle peppers or 2-3 green peppers
- 2 jalapeños, if desired
- 2 pounds ground beef (I use 96% lean)
- 3 teaspoons chili powder
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon Adobo seasoning
- 1 teaspoon Ancho Chili Pepper
- 3/4 teaspoon Chipotle
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
- 1/2 teaspoon Aleppo pepper
- 2 tablespoons Beef Better Than Bouillon
- 28 oz can diced fire roasted tomatoes
- 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
- 4 cups water
- 2 cans red kidney beans, drained
- 1 can great northern beans, drained
- salt to taste
In a dutch oven or 8 qt pan, cook onions in about 2 teaspoons of oil on medium until the onions are translucent.
Meanwhile, char the poblano peppers under the broiler, turning when the peppers are charred on the outside. Remove and put in a brown paper bag. Fold the bag over to seal. Set aside.
Add cubanelle peppers and jalapenos to the pan. Cook until the peppers are tender.
Add ground beef and cook until brown. Salt to taste.
Add chili powder, smoked paprika, cumin, Adobo, Ancho, Chipotle, cayenne. and Aleppo pepper. Stir to combine. Add beef bouillon and canned tomatoes. Stir to combine. Fill the cans with water to remove remaining tomato from the sides and add to the pan. Stir in the beans.
Remove the poblano peppers from the bag and peel the translucent layer of skin off. Then, chop the peppers and add to the soup.
Bring to a simmer on medium. Cook for at least 30 minutes. The longer you cook it, the more the flavor develops. Cook on medium low all day or put a lid on the dutch oven and place in a 250 degree oven. Check every 30 to 45 minutes to make sure there is enough water in the pan.
Serve with your favorite toppings or freeze.