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Chili Con Carne Recipe

Chili con carne is an amazing meat stew that can be so much more than just some spicy meat with beans. In fact beans shouldn’t even be there at all!

Chili-con-carne-recipe-3-SunCakeMomChili con carne is the ragout of the Americans. Ragout is the Italian name for Bolognese sauce that has as many variations as many cooks in Italy and beyond. Let’s not get into that the Spaghetti Bolognese is a non-existent dish in Italy, was born out of our perverse laziness of relying on ready-made ingredients when trying to make traditional dishes.

The same is happening with chili con carne. It has as many variations as many cooktops it has been made on and it was made in many kitchens during the centuries, since it was created by the conquistadores.

That so many other things too we can thank the chili con carne to the Spanish conquerors. Although chili con carne or Meat with chili as it translates to English from Spanish is not a native American dish.

It was brought over to the America by the inhabitents of the Canary Islands who were happily went to the New World in service of the Spanish Crown, in exchange for titles and wealth. Interestingly enough, the Canary Islands are so far from the Spanish mainland that they belong to the African continent geographically but not politically and strategically.

This closeness to Africa influenced not only its native inhabitants’ gene pool but their culinary heritage, as well. Their arrival to the New World and the ability to grow or rather not to grow the spices and herbs, they were getting used to make them search for alternatives.

Luckily, chili was in abundance around those parts and the most basic dish was created growing not only in popularity during the years but in ingredients, as well.

The original, if there is such Chili con carne that we know of today, also has a couple of ingredients like chili, meat, tomato, onion and salt. Oregano, pepper, cumin are very popular additions with some sort of beans as well.

Beans in fact are so popular that canned Chili con carne is sold almost always with beans and the version without beans is labelled as Chili con carne without beans in the US. In some countries the dish even referred to as Chili with beans.

Sure enough, there are vegetarian versions of the chili as it mostly called nowadays which substitutes the meat with other vegetables like tofu or simply more beans. The flexibility of the dish is almost as limitless as our imagination.

It’s a naturally low carb dish that is basically ruined for all keto dieters when throwing in the beans but that can be helped by swapping the beans with another keto friendly vegetable, in case we are after a simple and easy meal.

Chili con carne is not just a one-dimensional dish though. It’s humble, yet strong base of welcoming such a great variety of options that few can withstand the temptations of creating something different that doesn’t only fulfill the needs but provides joy along the way.

Probably, this is why Chili making competitions are held, creating so many variations and flavors, yet protecting the essence of the dish. Interestingly enough in these competitions beans are banned.Chili-con-carne-recipe-2-SunCakeMom

Ingredients:

    • 1/2 cup Oil, lard or some bacon for rendering fat out
    • 3 medium Onions (sliced or diced)
    • 2 teaspoon Salt
    • 2 lb / 1kg Minced meat
    • 2 tablespoon Chili
    • 3 Garlic (crushed)
    • 1 teaspoon Black pepper (optional)
    • 1 teaspoon Cumin
    • 1 teaspoon Oregano
    • 29 oz / 800g Tomato
    • 1 teaspoon Cacao or cocoa powder (unsweetened)
    • 16 oz / 500g Beans (kidney)
    • 1 cup / 250ml Water
    • Optional:
      • Paprika
      • Thyme
      • Cayenne

How to make:

  1. Pour oil or lard into a pan and heat it up to medium to high. Bacon or pancetta also can be used to render its fat out, expanding the dish flavor portfolio.
  2. Add the sliced or diced onions with some salt and sauté until the onion gets a glassy / translucent look.Chili-con-carne-recipe-Process-1-SunCakeMom
  3. Add the minced meat and brown it which should take about 10 minutes.Chili-con-carne-recipe-Process-2-SunCakeMom
  4. It’s time to add the chili, garlic, black pepper, cumin and oregano then stir. Fry all the ingredients until the spices get fragrant for about 3 – 5 minutes.Chili-con-carne-recipe-Process-3-SunCakeMom
  5. Mix in the tomato that can be sliced, diced, pureed or canned, it doesn’t really matter as during the cooking it all should be the same. Sprinkle in the cacao powder.Chili-con-carne-recipe-Process-4-SunCakeMom
  6. If we haven’t prepared for such a huge amount of stew then it’s time to swap into a bigger pot and add the additional ingredients, in this case the beans. In case of canned beans reserve this step to until everything else is cooked and ready as canned beans don’t require much time to be done. Dried beans should be soaked at least about 6 hours before cooking but follow the instructions on the packaging.Chili-con-carne-recipe-Process-5-SunCakeMom
  7. Add as much water as submerges all the ingredients and cook it until the beans are ready that should be done in about 1 to 3 hours. Replace the evaporated water according to the thickness of chili we are pursuing.Chili-con-carne-recipe-Process-6-SunCakeMom
  8. It’s recommended letting the chili cool, at least half an hour before serving but some even swear on placing it into the fridge overnight to bring the flavors properly together.Chili-con-carne-recipe-Process-7-SunCakeMom

Enjoy!Chili-con-carne-recipe-1-SunCakeMom

Chili Con Carne Recipe
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
1 hr
Beans soaking time
6 hrs
Total Time
7 hrs 10 mins
 
Chili con carne is an amazing meat stew that can be so much more than just some spicy meat with beans. In fact beans shouldn't even be there at all!
Course: Low Crab Meal, Main Course
Cuisine: Dairy free, Gluten free, Keto, Low carb recipe, Mexican, Paleo
Author: Thomas Brown
Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup Oil lard or some bacon for rendering fat out
  • 3 medium Onions sliced or diced
  • 2 teaspoon Salt
  • 2 lb / 1kg Minced meat
  • 2 tablespoon Chili
  • 3 Garlic crushed
  • 1 teaspoon Black pepper optional
  • 1 teaspoon Cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Oregano
  • 29 oz / 800g Tomato
  • 1 teaspoon Cacao or cocoa powder unsweetened
  • 16 oz / 500g Beans kidney
  • 1 cup / 250ml Water
  • Optional:
  • Paprika
  • Thyme
  • Cayenne
  • ...
Instructions
  1. Pour oil or lard into a pan and heat it up to medium to high. Bacon or pancetta also can be used to render its fat out, expanding the dish flavor portfolio.
  2. Add the sliced or diced onions with some salt and sauté until the onion gets a glassy / translucent look.
  3. Add the minced meat and brown it which should take about 10 minutes.
  4. It's time to add the chili, garlic, black pepper, cumin and oregano then stir. Fry all the ingredients until the spices get fragrant for about 3 - 5 minutes.
  5. Mix in the tomato that can be sliced, diced, pureed or canned, it doesn't really matter as during the cooking it all should be the same. Sprinkle in the cacao powder.
  6. If we haven't prepared for such a huge amount of stew then it's time to swap into a bigger pot and add the additional ingredients, in this case the beans. In case of canned beans reserve this step to until everything else is cooked and ready as canned beans don't require much time to be done. Dried beans should be soaked at least about 6 hours before cooking but follow the instructions on the packaging.
  7. Add as much water as submerges all the ingredients and cook it until the beans are ready that should be done in about 1 to 3 hours. Replace the evaporated water according to the thickness of chili we are pursuing.
  8. It's recommended letting the chili cool, at least half an hour before serving but some even swear on placing it into the fridge overnight to bring the flavors properly together.
Recipe Notes

Enjoy!

Pin now, Enjoy later!

Chili-con-carne-recipe-Pinterest-SunCakeMom

Thomas Brown

Master of the chef's knife. Tamer of the wild flavors into harmonious perfection. All time blind champion of the roller technique.
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Thomas Brown

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