In my home during the cold winter months I make chili about once every other week. I love chili. I was raised on the stuff. It’s hearty, flavorful, and it’s simply a perfect blend of so many delicious ingredients, and there’s more….. it makes delicious left overs. I ‘m not a huge fan of left overs of any kind but this, it’s like a spaghetti sauce, letting it sit overnight just allows that much more time for the flavors to saturate so it’s equally as good as the first day it’s made. Chili is a simple and classic American dish. Another reason I make it so often is because I always have all of the ingredients on hand. There aren’t many meals out their that contain so many ingredients which start from a can and it ends with such tasty results.
One of my favorite ways to serve chili is with baked Russet potatoes. I slice the baked potato open then slightly compress it so it mashes a bit to create more area for soaking then I drench it with hot chili, smother it with Cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese and finish it a generous dollop of sour cream (and sometimes hot sauce because how can I resist?), then I usually have a full bowl of chili along side that =). Yes it is so delicious that I still crave it at least once or twice a month. I also love to serve it in a bread bowl or along with biscuits, cornbread and of course saltine crackers. My latest favorite chili is this recipe I created for the slow cooker. The flavor of the chili is amazing and the texture of the beef is so tender, basically perfect and the way the ground beef in chili should be. Six hours of slow cooking creates the best chili ever. And have I mentioned how easy this chili is to make? It’s a total breeze, so this will likely become a recipe you won’t want to lose =). Simplicity – check, unbelievably satisfying – check, easy cleanup – check check check. You’re going to watn to try this. Enjoy!
Slow Cooker Chili
Yield: 6 - 7 servings
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 lbs lean ground beef
- 1 large yellow onion , finely chopped
- 3 cloves of garlic , finely minced
- 2 (14.5) oz cans diced tomatoes with green chilies*
- 3 (8 oz) cans tomato sauce
- 1/2 cup water or beef broth
- 2 Tbsp chili powder
- 2 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- 2 tsp paprika
- 2 tsp cocoa powder
- 1 tsp granulated sugar
- 1/2 tsp ground coriander
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper , to taste
- 1 (15 oz) can dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 (15 oz) can light red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- Serve topped with:
- Cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese , sour cream, chopped red or green onions, cilantro, roasted peppers, or hot sauce
- Optionally serve with:
- fresh cornbread or biscuits , baked russet potatoes, saltine crackers or tortilla chips
Heat olive oil in a large and deep non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Once oil is hot, add onion and saute 3 minutes, then add garlic and saute 30 seconds longer. Pour onions into a 6 or 7 quart slow cooker.
Return skillet to medium-high eat, add beef and cook stirring occasionally until beef has browned. Drain most of fat from beef, leaving about 2 Tbsp in with beef (this is optional, I think it ads flavor but you can drain it all if you'd prefer). Pour browned beef into slow cooker.
Add diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, 1/2 cup water or beef broth, chili powder, cumin, paprika, cocoa powder, sugar, coriander and season mixture with salt and pepper to taste. Stir mixture, cover with lid and cook on low heat for 5 - 6 hours.
Stir in dark and light red kidney beans and allow to heat through, about 10 minutes (if you want the soup to have more liquid you can add in another 1/2 cup water or beef broth). Serve warm with desired toppings (I say the cheese and sour cream is a must, everything else is optional).
*If you don't like heat then you can use canned tomatoes without green chiles since they are a little spicy.
Recipe Source: Cooking Classy