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My Thursday Thing: Chili Two-Ways

First things first, my apologies to Cincinnati. This blog post is not about your famous chili, served two, three, four or sometimes even five ways. This is about my own easy and "mostly" quick chili recipe, sans cinnamon, and how to serve it two different ways: in a big heaping pile topped with cheese alongside a homemade yeast biscuit or slathered on a hot dog with cheese.

I was so inspired by my own post last week about a cold winter's night dish that I decided to make it a two-for-one, following up my pork stew with a spicy chili. With just a little bit of preparation, this dish is easy to make even for the newest of cooks, and it doesn't need to simmer for hours and hours. Here's how it's made:


  • 2 tbsp olive oil

  • 1/2 small onion, diced

  • 1 tbsp He Can Cook Original Spice Rub (get it here!)

  • 2 tbsp chili powder

  • 1 1/2 pounds ground beef, preferably 85% lean

  • 28 oz. can of diced tomatoes

  • 2 tbsp tomato paste

  • 1 tsp salt

  • 1/2 tsp black pepper

  • 15 to 16 oz. can pinto beans, drained and rinsed until water runs clear

  • 15 to 16 oz. can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed until water runs clear


  • Heat olive oil in a large heavy-bottom sauce pan, like a dutch oven. Once it's warm, but not too hot, add the onions and cook 4 minutes, stirring occasionally until they begin to soften. Just don't let them brown!

  • Sprinkle the spice rub and chili powder over the onions, and cook 1 minute, stirring frequently.

  • Add the ground beef and use a wooden spoon to break up the meat into small crumbles while mixing it together with the onion and spices. Saute until all the meat is just browned. This should take roughly 6-8 minutes.

  • Stir in the diced tomatoes, tomato paste, salt and pepper and mix until all the ingredients are well combined.

  • Cover the pot and turn down the heat to medium-low. Cook for 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes.

  • Taste the chili. If it's not spicy enough, you can add another tbsp of chili powder at this time. Add some extra salt and black pepper if you desire. Recover and simmer for another 15 minutes.

  • Add the beans to the pot, stir into the chili and cook 15 minutes uncovered. The starch from the beans should thicken up the liquid to typical chili consistency.

That's it! As I said, you could serve it the way I did, topped with shredded cheese alongside a homemade (or canned, I won't tell) biscuit, or on a hot dog with shredded cheese and some yellow mustard.

ALTERNATIVES: The great thing about this chili is you can eat it more than just two ways. Instead of with a biscuit, serve it with cornbread. Or leave out the beans and you've got yourself a good 'ol Sloppy Joe. Just pile it on a bun and roll up your sleeves. Or, if you're craving that Cincinnati chili, add a tablespoon of cinnamon with the chili powder and serve it on top of spaghetti with or without shredded cheddar cheese.

What's your favorite way to eat chili? Comment below and be entered to win a He Can Cook drink coaster, hot off the presses!

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