I found this Gourmet chili recipe on Smitten Kitchen and have been craving it every since I made it a year ago. I didn’t do the biscuits, though they look delicious. Instead, I served with the usual grated cheddar, sour cream, and tortilla chips. There is something about the use of tomato sauce (instead of crushed or whole peeled tomatoes) that makes a difference. It has a bit of heat to it, though not too much, which my kids were okay with. In fact, it was an overall parent-kid crowd pleaser. Though the recipe calls here for bell peppers at the end, I sauteed them every sweating the onions. My son said it was the best chili he’s ever had.

Serves 6 (or more…in fact we were four adults and four children)

2 large onions, chopped (about 3 cups)
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 carrots, sliced thin (suggested by Gourmet) or in a small dice, as I’d chop them next time
3 pounds boneless beef chuck, ground coarse or 3 pounds ground beef
1/4 cup chili powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons paprika
1 tablespoon crumbled dry oregano
Dried red pepper flakes, to taste (Gourmet suggests 1 tablespoon; I used 1 teaspoon knowing that my flakes are very hot)
2 8-ounce cans tomato sauce or 2 cups fresh tomato sauce or tomato puree
1 1/4 cups beef broth
3 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 3/4 cups or 1 19-ounce can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
2 green bell peppers, chopped

grated cheddar and sour cream for garnish

In a large pot (I used a 5-quart, and just fit it all), heat the oil over moderately low heat and cook the onions in it for 5 to 10 minutes, until softened. Add the garlic and carrots and cook for one minute more. Raise the heat to medium and add the beef, stirring and breaking up any lumps until it is no longer pink, about 10 minutes. Add the chili powder, cumin, paprika, oregano and pepper flakes and cook for another minute. Add the tomato sauce, broth and vinegar and simmer the chili, covered, for 35 to 40 minutes (if you used ground beef) or 50 to 60 minutes (if you used coarse chuck). Add the kidney beans, bell peppers, salt (I used 2 teaspoons to get the seasoning right for my tastes) and pepper to taste and simmer for an additional 15 minutes, until the bell peppers are tender.



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Comments (7)


  1. Posted by: Andrea

    Maybe the MOMFILTER crowd can help me out here. Having adult company over — serve chili, yay or nay? Too casual? Or FINE?

    (Company = friends, not the President or my boss, if that matters.)

  2. Posted by: Pilar

    I say yay. I realize I’m the one who posted the chili, but one way to give it a little upgrade is to serve it with some popovers (I love the Julia Child recipe),

    and with a little toppings buffet that includes, beyond the usual cheddar suspects, cilantro, and avocado…

  3. Posted by: Andrea

    That’s what I thought, but I got flamed on UB (talk about asking for it) when I dared to suggest chili for guests. Sheesh. I feel better, and I’m making this for guests this weekend.

  4. Posted by: Ann

    This was really good. Just the right amount of herbs and spices so it wasn’t too spicy for kids and just enough heat for adults. The only exceptions I made were turkey, chicken broth, and a green and red bell pepper. Thanks for sharing this. I will surely make again.

  5. Posted by: Heija

    Andrea, what is “UB'” the UNfun Bunch? Chili is hot food for cool people! Have fun!

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