From The Kitchen: Chili

One of the first things Jason and I cook when the weather starts to turn cool is chili. We love chili. It’s the perfect thing for a cold winter’s day. Not only does it taste good, but it makes a huge batch so we are able to freeze some plus eat some during the week. It makes for one of the best leftovers too because the spices start to mingle the longer it sits. Chili is wonderful!

It’s an interesting thing that I love it so much now because growing up we didn’t eat much of it and so I always thought I didn’t like it. Then, after we got married, Jason introduced me to the recipe his Mom always made and I was hooked. It became my new favorite thing. I’m not sure where this recipe originally came from but, as we do with most recipes, we have tweaked it to our liking and now (we think) it’s perfect. Make it and see for yourself…

A glimpse into our recipe book. From my experience, the hand written recipes are the best!!


2 pounds ground beef (we have never tried ground turkey but I bet it would be good too!)
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 quarts tomato juice
1 can (15 oz) kidney beans, drained
1 can (15 oz) black beans, drained
28 oz can pork & beans
28 oz can diced tomatoes
1 teaspoon salt
2 or 3 teaspoons chili powder
1 bay leaf
4 shakes Tabasco sauce
a dash or two of hickory smoke
a bit of cayenne pepper

Using a large kettle, brown the hamburger and onion. Drain off grease. Add all of the other ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 1.5 – 2 hours (do not cover). Remove bay leaf and serve. This recipe is better with age :)

Browning the beef.

Spices, Tabasco, and tomato juice, all ready to go.

The line up. Just to give you an idea of what brands we use.

The chili while it is simmering.

When your chili is ready you can doctor it up to your hearts content (try adding sour cream or cheddar). My favorite thing to do with it is pour some over a baked sweet potato! You may be a little bit skeptical about it but trust me, it is so good. Just bake your sweet potato by adding a bit of olive oil and salt and pepper and wrap it in foil for 1 hour at 450 degrees and it’s super good. And then do it again the next day because the chili is even better as leftovers. Bon appetit!!