When JR and I first got married, we had a few meals that were staple items. One was burgers with onion rings. We ate those A LOT. And gained A LOT of weight in the process. Shew, the things I would go back and tell myself…Anyways, today I want to share with you another meal we made that has luckily stood the test of time. With some changes here and there along the way, we came up with our own version of chili and we absolutely love it! I hope you love it, too. Also, jalapeno cornbread tastes amazing with it. Just saying.
The first thing you’re going to need to do for this menu is cooking your ground meat. We always cook ours in the crockpot on low for several hours and then store it in the freezer. It helps us prepare meals better and make less of a mess along the way. So, in our case we pull a pound of ground meat from the freezer and let it thaw until ready. The next thing we do it the obvious- we throw it in the crockpot. So easy! The next step is to throw in an onion and a green pepper. If you’re making your meat on the stove, you can throw in your diced vegetables but if not, just dice them and throw them straight in the crock. The next step is to add all the beans. You can’t make chili without it. We use all kinds of beans but what we use most often is one can of red kidney beans and one can of black beans. Most recipes will tell you drain them but I feel like it becomes too dry so I go ahead and put the beans and juice in all-together. If you’re doing dry beans that you’ve soaked and cooked (cooks well in the crockpot, too), you can add a little extra water with it. Next step is to add a can (8 ounces) of tomato sauce and a can (28 ounces) of diced tomatoes. The truth here is I have added a few different sizes from time to time and they’ve turned out fine. That’s one thing I really love about this recipe. I’ve yet to mess it up and that’s a total win for me! The last step is to add those yummy spices- 2 tablespoons of chili powder, 1 tablespoon of hot sauce, 1 ½ tablespoons of ground mustard seed and salt and pepper to taste (I like 1 teaspoon of both). This part is where it gets easy. Take everything you’ve just put in the crockpot, mix it up, set it on low for six to eight hours, and wait. That’s all. I love easy and this makes it SUPER easy. Nothing beats this on a cold winter’s day. I like to make it for others (when they have a baby, when they’re sick, when they just want food cooked for them) and like to deliver it in mason jars. It just seems so “at home”.
I hope this makes some of your meals just a little easier and your Mondays a little less hectic. Join us back next Monday for the next Manic Monday special!
1 pound ground meat (we prefer venison)
1 green pepper
1 1/2 tbsp ground mustard seed
2 tbsp chili powder
1 tbsp hot sauce
1 can red kidney beans (or two cups dry/cooked red kidney beans)
1 can black beans (or two cups dry/cooked black beans)
1 can (8 oz) tomato sauce
1 can (28 oz) diced tomatoes
Salt & pepper to taste (I do 1 tsp of each)
**Note on the tomatoes that you can use homemade/homegrown of both which is my FAVORITE!)
Brown meat, drain, return to pan, and mix in diced green peppers and onions. Once finished, add to crockpot with all spices, beans (preferably undrained), tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, salt, and pepper. Cook in crockpot on low for 6-8 hours. Serve alongside cornbread or potatoes. Yum!