World’s Best Chili Recipe
There is nothing better than coming across a recipe that is easy to execute, made up of accessible ingredients and turns out to be The Best X You've Ever Had. Well, for anyone who likes a warm bowl of spicy chili on a crisp autumn night, here it is.
It comes courtesy of my sister Amy, who doesn’t exactly love to cook. Yet I’m always impressed by the meals she’s whips up, often using ingredients that are pre-made. (Ie, mix Hellmans with hot sauce for a simple and delicious sandwich spread) It’s about combining flavours more than it is actual cooking.
The beauty of this recipe, and any stew, is that you can’t really screw it up and every time it’ll taste a little different. All amounts are estimates. The critical piece of advice here is to season and taste as you go to get the right balance of smokey, spicy and sweet.
World’s Best Chili Recipe
- 1 package lean ground beef (specific amount doesn’t really matter, the one I used cost $8)
- 3/4 large white onion, finely diced
- liquid smoke
- Tobasco sauce
- Worcestershire sauce
- cayenne pepper
- chilli pepper
- 1 can red kidney beans
- 1 beer
- 1 jar pre-made spaghetti sauce
- 1 small jar roasted red pepper pesto (see note below)
- 1 jalapeno pepper, seeds removed and finely diced
- 1 thai red pepper, seeds removed and finely diced
- 1 small bag frozen corn
- 1 orange pepper, diced
- 1 whole rotisserie roasted chicken (from the prepared foods section of your grocer), pulled apart into shredded pieces. Omit the skin.
- salt and pepper
Saute onions in a dollop of butter until translucent. Add ground beef and saute until browned. Add several drops of liquid smoke, Tobasco and Worcheshire sauce and 1/2 to 1 teaspoon each of cayenne and chilli powder, depending on how spicy you like it. Add salt and pepper and taste for seasoning. You want to get hit with a bit of smoke and spice. It’s important to flavour the beef at this stage to get that deep, multi-layered effect to the flavours.
Then add the beer, spaghetti sauce and all other ingredients. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to low, covered, for an hour or so. Adjust seasoning. (When I’m testing for seasoning, I always put a little in a bowl and let it cool down so I can get a true sense of flavours. When it’s very hot it’s too hard to tell.)
As with any stew, this always tastes better the next day. Serve with a dollop of sour cream, grated cheddar cheese, green onions and a sprinkling of crushed Cool Ranch Doritos. (Trust me on that part.) Put a baguette and a simple green salad on the table and you’re a hero.
Note: Prepared red pepper pestos are available at most grocery stores. You could always make your own; roast 3-4 red peppers at 450 until blackened. When cool remove skins and seeds. Puree in a blender with olive oil and salt and even some roasted garlic. But this chilli recipe is all about ease and there are excellent pre-made products for sale. You could also roast your own chicken but do you have a rotisserie?