Easy Homemade Low-Bean Chili

I've never really been a fan of thick chunky chili. Ok, let's be honest: I'm almost as picky with textures in food as my kids are. I love the taste of chili but kind of avoid beans at all costs. There's just something about the dry weird texture to them that I never could get over. 

My fiance, on the other hand, loves chili and beans and all southern foods. I compromised on this dish, a low-bean chili recipe that is probably a little closer to a hearty soup than chunky chili. I made it back in December for a family gathering (my son's birthday) and it was a huge hit. I was a little surprised that everyone loved it so much, considering that it really isn't your traditional chili. It is packed with flavor, though, and great for cold evenings.

The trick to making this chili is to add the ingredients in a specific order, otherwise, you'll end up with a watered down chili-flavored bean soup. Not recommended!

First, I dice up a medium yellow onion and toss it into a big pot over medium-high heat. Once they start sweating a little bit, I throw in a pound of ground chuck. I brown the beef, stirring often with the onions, and then drain off the grease. 

Before adding the meat/onion mixture back into the pot, though, I dump in a can of fire-roasted tomatoes and the chili seasoning. I let that simmer for 2-3 minutes, then add in the meat mixture. That has to reduce down a little bit, to give the meat the smoky tomato and chili flavoring, and then I add a can of tomato sauce, two cans of chili beans (in chili sauce) and one can of drained & rinsed dark red kidney beans. I also add in 1/2 cup of water at this point and mix it all together before reducing the heat and letting it slowly simmer for about 15-20 minutes.

You're probably wondering how I eat chili without eating beans, aren't you? Even Matt looks at me weird when I get a bowl! I usually use a ladle to scoop up meat, onions, tomatoes, and lots of sauce/broth while leaving the beans behind in the pot - then add lots of sour cream and cheese and use it as a cracker dip. Probably one of my favorite foods of all times. And yes, I know I'm a little odd - but you can't knock it until you try it!

Easy Homemade Chili Recipe

Easy Homemade Chili Recipe
A low-bean chili packed with lots of flavor
- 1 Medium yellow onion, diced
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1 can fire-roasted tomatoes
- 1 can tomato sauce
- 2 cans chili beans (pintos) in chili sauce
- 1 can dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 Tbs Chili Seasoning (You can use a packet, but I prefer this recipe)

- In a large pot over medium-high heat, add diced onions and begin to sweat them. Add ground beef and brown. Drain and set aside.
- Pour in fire-roasted tomatoes with juice into pot and add your chili seasoning. Let simmer/reduce for 2-3 minutes before adding the meat/onion mixture back in.
- Reduce heat to medium and add in remaining ingredients, stirring to combine well.
- Cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

*Notes: Best served with sour cream, shredded cheddar, and thinly sliced green onion, although the cave man puts mayo in his. (He told me to tell you guys it's awesome, if you like that kind of thing)

Am I alone? Who else here doesn't like chili with a lot of beans?

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