Black Bean and Chipotle Chili

We love a good pot of chili. Nothing better on a cold Sunday afternoon. Throw in some shredded cheese and Fritos and Tim is a happy, happy man! Plain Greek yogurt and a tiny scatter of cheese on top for me.

This is my go to chili recipe. And actually I usually just make it by instinct. I just know what goes in to the pot.  I had to measure everything and write it down in order to share it with you guys! A lot of my kitchen playing is like that, actually.

When I was a kid, chili was a frequent dinner in the winter. My mom ALWAYS served hearty soups, chilis and stews with. . .wait for it. . . pickles, cottage cheese, crackers, and some sort of quick Jiffy mix muffin. I know. . it sounds weird, but in my head soup always goes with pickles and cottage cheese. Tim thought I was nuts the first time I served him soup with pickles on the side!

If we were having chili the muffin would usually be corn. If she made brocoli cheese or potato soup she often made apple cinnamon or oatmeal muffins. I think that was moms way of stretching the soup further. Kind of fleshing out the meal. I’m not much of a muffin girl these days so we usually have some tortilla chips instead.

Chipotle peppers are delicious. They are actually smoked jalepenos. I generally use chipotle peppers canned in adobo sauce. They can be pretty spicy so I start with one minced pepper from the can and add from there. This time around I couldn’t find whole canned chipotles so I settled on the salsa. It worked fine but wasn’t as spicy so I kept adding one tablespoon at a time until it was at a heat level I could live with.

I canned my own tomatoes this past fall so I use 2 quarts of those. It equates to about 8 cups or 2 large cans of crushed or diced tomatoes. I like things a little chunkier so I lean toward diced generally but my canned tomatoes are crushed.

There are even secret ingredients in this chili. Shhh. . .don’t tell.  Coffee and cocoa powder and honey. You can get your chocolate fix and caffeine all in one bowl!

Cocoa powder and coffee add a depth to the flavor and a subtle sweetness that tames the acid of the tomatoes. They almost give it an extra little meaty flavor. Honey also helps to tame the acid and brings out the salt a bit, too. People will never know you added those ingredients. They will just know that it is some good chili!

I usually add a can of beef broth but I was out and made do without it. I like a chunky but looser chili. Two cans of black beans are often on my ingredient list but I backed it down to one since I was not using the beef broth.

As far as toppings go, I like plain Greek yogurt. You can use sour cream if you prefer. I always have Greek yogurt in the fridge and I use it instead of sour cream most of the time. I can make the chili good and spicy and the yogurt/sour cream cools my mouth off as I eat. Delicious and useful! Enjoy!

Black Bean and Chipotle Chili

1 Tbsp olive oil

1 large onion diced

1 lb extra lean ground turkey

1 Tbsp salt

2 Tbsp cumin

2 Tbsp Chili Powder

1/2 tsp garlic powder or 2 minced garlic cloves

2 quarts crushed tomatoes (about 8 cups)

1 can black beans, rinsed and drained

1-3 chipotle peppers (canned in adobo sauce) (This time my grocery store only had the chipotle sauce in a can so I used 4 Tbsp of the sauce)

1 can tomato paste

1/2 cup coffee (I use whatever is left over from breakfast that day)

2 Tbsp honey

2 Tbsp Cocoa powder

In a large soup pot heat the oil and saute the onion until soft. Add the ground turkey and brown and crumble. It is so lean you will not need to drain it.

Add the salt and all the spiced and stir it in to the meat and heat it all a few minutes. Now add all the remaining ingredients. Stir well and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer covered for 1- 2 hours. Taste for salt and spice. If you like you can add more salt or more spices and more chipotle and let it simmer a few more minutes before serving. Serve with shredded cheese, sour cream/plain yogurt, fritos. (Optional)


2 responses »

  1. Yum, looks good! And pickles definitely go with soup and chili, but then in my mind pickles go with pretty much everything…


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