There are so many recipes for chili from those used on the competition circuit that uses no beans to those loaded with beans and even vegetarian and vegan varieties. All of them generally start with the same basic ingredients and then are brought in one direction or another to bring out certain flavor profiles. Since my husband likes spicy chili, we’ve brought this chili in that direction. I’ve used this recipe for a work competition a few years ago and took third place of about 25 entries. I didn’t think that was too bad for my first try at making something above the traditional style chili I am used to making. The overall flavor comments were that it was a tad too spicy so I’ve dialed down the spice just a little to appeal to more folks and yet still curb the desire for a Spicy Bean Chili.
Chili, to me, is one of the ultimate, if not original, skillet meals. There’s just something about the flavors of chili that are warming and comforting just the aroma of chili leaves an imprint on your senses. If you are a chili purist, you can very easily omit the beans used in this recipe. If you prefer a less spicy chili, check out our three bean chili or our traditional chili. The beef on this recipe can easily be substituted with either turkey meat or tofu crumbles — if you substitute for tofu crumbles you will also need to change the beef broth to vegetable stock, water or apple juice works well, too.
Spicy Bean Chili
Yield 6 servings
- 2 lbs lean ground beef
- 1 large onion, diced
- 1 clove (about 1 teaspoon) of garlic, minced
- 2 Tablespoons chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/8 teaspoon oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1 or 2 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, chopped
- 1/2 to 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, more or less to taste
- salt and ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 cup beef stock
- 1 can (15 oz) tomato sauce
- 1 (15 oz) can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 (15 oz) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- In a cast iron pan or large skillet, brown the grown beef together with the onions.
- Once the beef is browned and the onions are cooked, add the garlic and cook for about 2 minutes more.
- Next add the beef stock, chili powder, cumin, oregano, paprika, cayenne and chipotles in adobo (more or less to taste) and stir well. Cook the spices for about 2 minutes.
- Then add the tomato sauce, rinsed and drained beans stirring well. Taste and adjust the salt and ground black pepper.
- Cover and simmer the chili for about 2 hours allowing the flavors time to meld. If during cooking, more moisture is required, use water to thin to your desired thickness. If the chili is to thin, uncover and cook a few minutes more until the desired consistency is achieved.
- A small amount of cumin added in the last 10 minutes of simmering enhances the aroma of the chili then taste and adjust the salt and pepper again, if necessary, just before serving.