I know, I know, it’s almost too hot for chili, but it was so cold last night at baseball practice in South Carolina I would have paid $100 for a bowl of my chili.
So everyone and their mother has been asking for this recipe the last few weeks. You see, this is one of my go-to recipes when I have to feed a bunch of people on a budget and I want them to have something nourishing and filling! I thought I would share it with my readers this month. I hope you enjoy it and the funny story surrounding it!
For years I grew up in Connecticut and one thing we always had in the fall and winter was clam chowder (FYI, I don’t eat that anymore. No shellfish or dairy like that for me) and chili. It was the kind of food that warmed your soul. My mother would make her chili with ground beef, some beans, tomato sauce, spices and lots of love. As I got older and started cooking for my husband I wanted that same yummy chili feeling on a cold day with him… But there was one problem, I stopped eating ground beef at 16! So I decided to make it with ground turkey and as quick and holistically healthy and easy as possible. Let’s just say… when you take the fat out of the meat you use it changes the flavor!
I spent a while trying to figure out how to make it taste amazing or at least how I remembered it! I finally got it down about 3 years into our now 16+ year marriage and now I want to share it with you! Please note, the brands I’m telling you to use make a difference and so does the amount of fat in the meat in this recipe. I had the misfortune of thinking I could make this recipe with other brands of beans and tomato sauce about 10 years into cooking it one way and unfortunately my husband “politely” told me, “Babe, your chili making days might be over…” The sad part about it- I was thinking the same exact thing! LORD, it did taste way off. Well, one day I couldn’t get to my beloved Trader Joe’s and I went to Publix in SC and bought the old stuff I made the chili with years ago when we first got married and everyone in the house, kids included were like, “Mom, it’s back! That great chili recipe as returned.” So, below you will find my easy yet really tasty chili recipe with all the band names beside the ingredients so you too can have success at home. Please tell me how you like it in the comment section below!
Start by chopping a white onion with yellow and green bell peppers. Be sure to use as much as you like. For a family of four, I like to use one large onion and one large green and yellow pepper. I cut the onion and peppers into larger pieces a well because I like the recipe to have somebody, but that is totally up to you!
I add the ground turkey and spices to the onion and peppers and cook until the meat is browned. I add lots of chili powder, black pepper, and paprika with a bit of salt. I also use some hot sauce in the mix as well.
Next, you will want to add the tomato sauce and diced tomatoes to the dish and let simmer for a few. Remember using the right type of tomato sauce and diced tomatoes are key to the success of this dish! Key, I tell ya!
1 Large White Onion
1 Yellow Bell Pepper
1 Green Bell Pepper
2 Packages of organic Ground Turkey (85/15)
1 Large can/box of Hunt’s Tomato Sauce
1 small can/box of Hunt’s Diced Tomatoes
2 Cans of Bush’s Organic Black Beans
2 Cans of Bush’s Organic Red Kidney Beans
2 Can of Bush’s Chili Beans in Hot Sauce
1 Tablespoon of Chili Powder
1.5 Teaspoons of Paprika
1 Teaspoon of Course Ground Pepper
Hot Sauce to Taste (Tabasco)
Salt to Taste
Garnish with Cilantro
This really is one of those recipes you can just pull together in a pot and let it cook and it’s totally better the second day once the flavors adjust and marry. Just be sure to brown the meat with the onion, pepper and spices first. Please rinse the beans thoroughly in a colander until all the “bubbles/suds” are gone if you want to avoid having gas after you eat it. I’m just keepin’ it real! LOL! I really hope you enjoy this family favorite at least once before the season is over! I love to cook brown rice and add a spoon full to each bowl. This added ingredient increases the protein power of this dish. Putting beans and rice together rounds out the amino chain for another complete protein source. In fact, you could pull the turkey out and make this a vegan dish!
Some family favorite add-ins:
Israel must have his organic non-GMO corn chip scoops and a bit of cheddar cheese.
Jai and Marcus won’t eat it without small saltine crackers and a bit of sour cream and cheddar cheese.
Kimberly loves it with brown rice and a bit of Plain Fage Greek Yogurt to substitute for the sour cream.