Chili is one of those foods I like with other foods. I like to put chili on a hot dog that has been grilled to dark perfection, then sprinkle it with cheese. Or I like to put chili on an omelet with a nice handful of cheese. It makes a serious breakfast! Then there’s adding a whole lot of shredded cheese to make a queso for tortilla chips. Chili is versatile in my castle!
The other day I had a 5# package of ground beef to freeze or use. I chose to use it to make some foods that would be fast to thaw for future meals. I’ve mentioned before that my P.S. and I have weird schedules and we have been dining out way too much lately. I made a big meatloaf using 2# of the beef. We grilled burgers two nights in a row. With the last 2# of beef I made a big pot of chili in the crockpot.
My chili recipe is fairly tame. I don’t like to burn my tongue. My P.S. would prefer it a bit spicier but I do point him to the hot sauce that he could add. He never does. He must like my flavors! I started by frying 2# of ground beef with about 1/2 cup of onion and a diced sweet bell pepper. I salted and peppered liberally.
Meanwhile I brought out my largest crockpot and added the cans of tomatoes and tomato paste.
I added two cans of black beans a can of pinto beans for the heck of it, since I didn’t have any more kidney beans. No big deal, beans are beans. We like them all. I added a can of refried beans for a richer, thicker chili.
I added my favorite chili spices: chili powder, oregano, cumin and garlic powder. I held off on any further salt and pepper until later. I stirred the crockpot mixture well.
The beef was browned and had cooked long enough to remove the excess liquid for the most part. I added the meat to the crockpot and stirred again. The chili was ready to simmer! I turned the heat to high for an hour, then to medium for another 3 hours. I stirred the pot occasionally.
I liked that the chili wasn’t very soupy. It was thicker with the addition of the refried beans. The beans also added extra flavor to the broth besides the texture. We ate the chili for a meal then used it for queso for another casual meal.
I finally froze the chili in different sized portions for future meals. One of them was a corn dog casserole that was oh so delicious topped with chili and cheese. And one day soon I’m going to make a Sunday omelet with chili and cheese to satisfy that particular craving. Versatile, I’m telling you!
Refried Beans Chili
A hearty chili with refried beans in the sauce.
- 2# ground beef
- 1 onion; diced
- 1 sweet bell pepper; diced (I used a yellow one)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
- 28 oz can petite diced tomatoes
- 15 oz can diced tomatoes
- 3 oz can tomato paste
- 2 cans black beans; drained and rinsed
- 1 can pinto beans; drained and rinsed
- 1 can refried black beans
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 1 tablespoon oregano
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- salt and pepper to taste
Put rest of ingredients into the crockpot and stir well. Cover and cook over low heat for 5-6 hours. Or cook on high for an hour then reduce to low for 2-3 hours for a faster pot of chili.