My little family is spending this winter in Newport, RI while my husband goes through some training. Before we got to Rhode Island my little one had only seen snow falling once before in her life. Well, things have definitely changed…after a few little snow falls and a Nor’easter called Nemo she has become quite used to the white, fluffy stuff. Last weekend after Nemo we were able to get some good snow play in. When we came inside we were cold, tired and hungry. On a snowy day there’s only one type of food that I want to satisfy my hunger and that’s a nice, warm bowl of chili.
Two things I love about this recipe: it mostly uses ingredients I readily have available in my pantry, and it’s versatile—I’ve made this recipe with both kidney beans and black beans. I’ve also made it on the stove top and in a slow cooker, no matter the variations this chili comes out great every time (see how to make the variations in the cook’s note).
For a rich, thick consistency, cook the chili with the lid on for half of the cooking time. If you are a fan of spicy food, consider using a little more of the red pepper flakes or cayenne–or both. The flavor of the chili improves with age; if possible, make it a day or up to five days in advance and reheat before serving. Leftovers can be frozen for up to a month.
Slow Cooker Option: At the end of step 1, transfer the cooked beef mixture to a slow cooker; add the rest of the ingredients as directed in step 2. Cook the chili on the high setting for four hours.
I like to serve this chili with my favorite corn bread recipe.