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Chili Con Carne

Posted by Denise on January 4, 2011

  chili con carne in bowl

You can make this chili as spicy or as mild as you and your family prefer. We like it pretty spicy. The recipe is for a mild version with instructions on making it more spicy.

Our family loves chili. We love it thick with lots of meat and beans. We also love it spicy, but since so many people prefer their chili on the mild side, I developed this flavorful version that is mild for get-togethers, but can be spiced up for those of us who like it hot. (I show how in the instructions below.)

When it starts to get chilly outside, we pull out the large pot and make a big ole batch of chili to drive away the chill. I love making this the day before we are planning to eat it and letting it rest in the refrigerator overnight to develop the flavors. The next day we like to get it out and simmer it for an hour or more until we are ready to eat.

This recipe also works really well for the slow cooker. Follow the instructions below, but instead of simmering in the pan on the stove, place it into the slow cooker and cook on low all day. What a great feeling knowing that dinner is ready whenever you need it! Any chili that you won't need can be frozen and reheated when you need it. Enjoy!


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Our Favorite Chili Con Carne Recipe

Serves 6-8 average servings



 3 lbs.  

Ground beef or half ground beef and half ground turkey
   14.5 oz. cans of diced tomatoes or whole tomatoes broken up into chunks, using the juice
 2  15.5 oz. cans of dark red kidney beans, drained
 2 15.5 oz. cans of light red kidney beans, drained
 1 medium sized white onion, diced
 1 teaspoon salt
 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  teaspoons cumin
 ½ - 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or more to taste if you like it spicy)
 ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  Tablespoon chili powder, either sweet or hot, depending on your taste
  1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  *Optional: Crushed pepper flakes to increase heat, to taste



  1. Place the raw ground beef in a heavy bottomed pan. I prefer to use the pan that I will cook the chili in so that the flavors that develop while browning the meat stays in the pan. It is better to do this in two batches in order to better separate the meat into small chunks. Brown the meat over medium high heat so that it gently browns without searing too much or burning. You will want to break up the meat into bite-sized or smaller pieces.


  2. When browned, drain grease from meat and place in large bowl and cover to keep warm. Brown rest of ground beef and drain. Place browned beef in bowl.
  3. Add chopped onion to pan and sweat on low heat for several minutes until it is translucent.
  4. Add meat back to pan. Add remaining ingredients, EXCEPT FLOUR, and mix everything together. Heat on medium until hot throughout. Try not to let it boil, but if it does, turn the heat down and stir carefully to avoid letting anything on the bottom of the pan stick and burn.


  5. When the mixture is hot throughout, sprinkle flour over top of mixture without creating clumps. Mix into the hot ingredients and let cook for another few minutes to thicken the liquid.
  6. The chili is ready to serve if you are in a hurry. Otherwise, chili gets better if it is allowed to simmer and can be left on simmer for hours to be ready when you are. Chili also develops more flavor and is great reheated the next day.
  • Serve with toppings such as a dollop of sour cream, jalapeno pepper slices, chopped raw onion, shredded colby/jack cheese or crumbled saltine crackers. Or add them all and really be adventuresome!
  • This chili freezes very well. Package it into airtight containers and use within three months of freezing. Reheat in the microwave or in a pan on the stove over low heat. Add a small dash of water if it is too thick.


TastyHomeCooking.com Chile Con Carne Recipe

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