RAISE YOUR HAND IF YOU LOVE CHILI!
Here’s the thing – I do love chili. But here’s the other thing – I’m kind of picky about chili. I like chili that is:
- Thick! Mega thick.
- Chunky, but small, even chunks – no huge pieces of tomato, please.
- Spicy, but not like fire-in-your-mouth spicy. Just the cozy, warming, winter afternoon kind of spicy.
- Beany in moderation. I want to know that the beans are there, but not be thinking about beans with every bite.
So… with that, I’d like to introduce you to my new favorite Sunday Chili.
It’s thick and appropriately chunky, spicy and extremely flavorful without being hot, balanced just right between meat, beans, and vegetables, and excellently scoopable (what else is chili for, really).
And not to mention it does that chili magic thing where it GETS BETTER AS LEFTOVERS.
The toppings – do we even need to discuss? – are a heavenly salad bar of possibilities. Avocado, cotjia cheese, cheddar cheese, cilantro, green onion, red onion, sour cream, crushed tortilla chips, crumbled corn bread, Fritos if you’re classy… yes, yes, and yes.
As you know, I’m currently obsessed with one-ingredient socca, and I think the golden/crispy/bready texture makes it a great dipper with this chili. But there’s always the miracle no-knead bread for something a little more crusty, hot, buttery, and traditional.
Through all the snow these last few weeks (like, many feet of snow), and all the stuck-inside-the-house vibes that go along with it, this hearty, meaty, chunky, slow-simmered Sunday chili has BEEN THERE for me.
Grab your toppings and your dippers and your biggest soup spoon.
Sunday + Chili + You = A Very Good Thing.
A winter weekend essential! Thick, hearty, slow-simmered chili makes for the BEST comfort food (and leftovers)!
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 1/2 pounds ground beef
- 6 slices bacon, cut into small pieces
- half of an onion, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 jalapeno, minced
- 4 carrots, minced (optional)
- 2 1/2 tablespoons chili powder
- 2 tablespoons cumin
- 1 tablespoon oregano
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 3–4 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 28-ounce can fire roasted crushed tomatoes
- 2 14-ounce cans beans, rinsed and drained (I like black beans and pinto beans)
- 2 cups beef or chicken broth (plus more to thin as needed)
- toppings: avocado, cheese, sour cream, tortilla chips, red onion, cilantro
- Mix salt with ground beef. Set aside so it can get nice and salty while you prep the other ingredients.
- In a large Dutch oven over medium high heat, fry your bacon pieces until crispy. Drain on paper towel lined plates. Pour off most of the bacon fat, but leave 1-2 tablespoons for sauteeing.
- Add the onion, garlic, jalapeno, and carrots. Sauté until soft and fragrant.
- Add the ground beef and spices. Brown until fully cooked.
- Add the tomato paste. Sauté for 2-3 minutes.
- Add tomatoes, beans, broth, and bacon. Bring to a low simmer. Cover it and let it hang out over low heat for at least 30-45 minutes, but ideally 2+ hours (this helps the flavors develop and this is why it’s Sunday chili). You can alternate between keeping it over a low flame and just letting it rest in the hot pot. It will thicken, so use extra water or broth to thin it out to desired consistency.
- BOOM! Top with all your favorite toppings. Make plans to revisit this again next Sunday.
Tomatoes: I like to use crushed tomatoes. But you can also use canned diced tomatoes.
Bacon: Optional, but SUPER good! A faster alternative is skipping the bacon but sauteeing your veggies in reserved bacon fat – you keep bacon fat in your fridge, right?! TIME TO START.
Speedy Tip 1.0: Once everything is browned up, you can add it to the Instant Pot and pressure cook it for 20-30 minutes to concentrate the flavors in less time.
Speedy Tip 2.0: Chop all your veggies up in the food processor! Less precise, but super fast and easy.
- Category: Dinner
- Method: Simmer
- Cuisine: American
Chili recipes that helped me come up with this version: Oh Sweet Basil’s Instant Pot Chili and Pressure Cook Recipes Instant Pot Chili. (The last few weeks I started making a Sunday chili in the Instant Pot but realized I preferred a regular stovetop version better, which is how I got here!)