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Classic Chili (and Giveaway Winner!)

In all honesty, I chose this recipe because it was not at all fussy to prepare, and because it had a high yield (4 dinners!). I have lots of different chili recipes, and wasn’t entirely convinced that I needed another one. As it turns out, I did. I needed a super-basic chili recipe that doesn’t require obscure spices or lots of veggie chopping. This was the one missing from my repertoire.

The thing that made this chili a crowd pleaser at the table is the versatility. We offered a variety of topping choices, and everyone got to choose their own, which made everyone very happy.

Classic Chili

Source: Fix, Freeze, Feast by Kati Neville and Lindsay Tkacsik

Grocery List

  • 6 pounds lean ground beef
  • 4 cups chopped onion
  • 1 Tbs garlic minced
  • 12 cups Basic Red Sauce (page 178)
  • 15 oz cans kidney beans
  • 15 oz cans pork and beans
  • 4 Tbs chili powder
  • 4 Tbs hot pepper sauce optional
  • 4 tsp dried oregano
  • 4 tsp black pepper
  • one-gallon freezer bags

1. Brown beef, onion, and garlic in a large stockpot over medium heat until beef is no longer pink, about 30 minutes. Drain and discard fat. Cool beef; divide evenly among the freezer bags.

This here is all the chopping that’s required for the recipe. Of course you can add in extra veg if you want to. Add it while the chili is simmering (I threw in some shredded zucchini from the freezer into the batch I cooked.)

I again ended up with way too much garlic. In the first recipe I tried, the number of cloves called for yielded way more than the amount called for. It happened here again. My advice is to chop and measure as you go. I only needed about 3 cloves to get to 1 tablespoon.

2. Into each bag measure 3 cups red sauce, 2 cans kidney beans, 1 can pork and beans, 1 Tbs chili powder, 1 Tbs hot pepper sauce, 1 tsp oregano, and 1 tsp pepper.

I ended up making a few ingredient changes to my big batch o’ chili. I came up just a little bit short on my quantity of Basic Red Sauce so I mixed in a can of stewed tomatoes into each bag. I don’t prefer the pork and beans, so I used canned pinto beans instead.  I also left out the hot pepper sauce, not wishing to invite arguments at the dinner table.

I was unsure if the beans should be drained before adding them. I opted for not draining, but think I will try draining them next time. I wanted my chili to cook in the crock pot, and keeping the liquid with the beans made it hard to boil off in the crock pot and the chili came out a little soupier than I would have liked. If you’ll be cooking your chili on the stove-top, I recommend not draining the beans. If you’ll be cooking it in a crock pot, I recommend draining them.

And again, you get to learn from my mistakes (I make a lot of them).

Our household is in the habit of washing and reusing plastic storage bags. When I reached for bags for the chili, I must have grabbed some used ones. After pouring the beans (and all their liquid) into the bags, I noticed a pool of soupy liquid forming on the counter. One of the bags had a hole in it. Freezer cooking rule number #2: Always use new bags.

3. Seal and freeze.

TO COOK

1. Completely thaw one entree in the refrigerator.

2. Cook, stirring occasionally, in a medium saucepan over low heat for 1 hour, or until liquid cooks off and chili is thick.

Here, if desired, add any chopped veg that you wish (carrots, bell peppers, zucchini, etc.)

 

Fix Freeze Feast Giveaway: We Have a Winner!

Thanks to everyone who left lovely comments for our giveaway last week. Congratulations to Erin D, the winner of our Fix, Freeze, Feast giveaway. We’ll be contacting you to arrange shipment of your autographed cookbook.

P.S. We picked the winner using a little jQuery and Regexp to count the entrees and then a simple Math.floor(Math.random()) -Clint

 

Print Recipe

Classic Chili

A good basic chili to fill your freezer (or feed a big crowd!). You can add in chopped veggies as desired while it simmers. Serve with desired toppings (cheese, olives, avocado, etc.)

Makes 4 entrees, 8 servings each.

Source: Fix, Freeze, Feast by Kati Neville and Lindsay Tkacsik

Ingredients

  • 6 pounds lean ground beef
  • 4 cups chopped onion
  • 1 Tbs garlic minced
  • 12 cups Basic Red Sauce (page 178)
  • 8 15 oz cans kidney beans
  • 4 15 oz cans pork and beans
  • 4 Tbs chili powder
  • 4 Tbs hot pepper sauce optional
  • 4 tsp dried oregano
  • 4 tsp black pepper
  • 4 one-gallon freezer bags

Directions

  1. Brown beef, onion, and garlic in a large stockpot over medium heat until beef is no longer pink, about 30 minutes. Drain and discard fat. Cool beef; divide evenly among the freezer bags.
  2. Into each bag measure 3 cups red sauce, 2 cans kidney beans, 1 can pork and beans, 1 Tbs chili powder, 1 Tbs hot pepper sauce, 1 tsp oregano, and 1 tsp pepper.
  3. Seal and freeze.
  4. TO COOK:
  5. Completely thaw one entree in the refrigerator.
  6. Cook, stirring occasionally, in a medium saucepan over low heat for 1 hour, or until liquid cooks off and chili is thick.

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  • This sounds and looks good. Reply
    Debra Kapellakis May 5, 2012 AT 4:24 am
     
 
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