Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Cheater's Chili

I love this chili and so do my friends and in laws. I've kept this recipe locked up because its so easy and cheap that its almost embarrassing. The chili comes out tasting sweet and savory, like it took me hours to prepare. I usually make Jiffy Corn Bread Muffins with this meal. They're simple and quick to mix up, costing only 68 cents at Walmart. I actually prefer them to any other cornbread mix except for Penguin mix sold at Costco.

I think the secret to good cooking comes not from following recipes to the "T" or from being timid with ingredients. Good cooks know which flavors pair well, and season to their taste. The only way to learn what pairs to perfection is to practice! We've eaten many meals in this house that we're just terrible and my husband, on his best behavior, gagged them down but we've had so many more that we're phenomenal. My recipes are templates for a delicious meal, start here and add as you like.

Cheater's Chili
Feeds 2 for a few days, 3 very hungry people, 4 average eaters

You will need
Time: 1 hour
(for this recipe assume all ingredients generic)

2lbs ground beef, or turkey
2 cans chili ready tomatoes. I actually prefer Walmart generic for this, though their generics are often very bad.
1 can chili ready beans
6 oz can tomato paste
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion
3 cloves garlic
Several tablespoons chili powder
Raw sugar
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)

1. Dice the onion and mince the garlic.
2. Heat olive oil in pot. Season with a pinch of salt, pepper and chili powder.
3. Saute onion and garlic in a large pot until golden.
4. Add the beef or turkey and brown over medium heat. Season with 1 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon of chili powder.
5. Add in 1 tablespoon of raw sugar. The flavor is much fuller than white sugar.
6. Once the meat has browned add the canned goods. Stir occasionally to prevent burning.
7. Stir in 2 tablespoons of chili power, 1/2 teaspoon of cumin and if you like it hot, 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper.
8. Let simmer with the lid off for at least 10 minutes. The flavors will blend better if the chili is left to simmer for about a half an hour but if you're in a hurry it will be just fine.
9. Serve with fresh grated cheddar cheese and diced sweet onion.

This recipe doesn't call for any bell peppers but I've made it with bell peppers, and hot peppers too. They would be cooked the same as the onions and garlic in the beginning. If you're low on meat or surprise guests arrive just add additional beans and tomatoes.


  1. This Chili will also not give you bathroom problems.

  2. And that, MJFlick is a big plus. ;)

    I have had this chili before and can heartily attest to its delectability. =)