So up until four years or so ago, I had never had chili. I had it for the first time at my husband’s cousin’s house when we were invited over to a party. I was hesitant to try it since I had never had it before (and I’ve traditionally been a picky eater) but I didn’t want to be rude so I grabbed a small bowl and tried it. And I actually liked it! After that party, I decided I would try and make it myself. My mom had given me a crock pot for Christmas one year, something I was surprised to get and I had no recipes to use it for. So when I decided to try my hand at making chili, I was excited to use my crock pot for the first time. I googled several different recipes but ended up calling my step-dad to ask for his recommendation on how to do it. Several years later, I make his recipe at least 2-3 times per month, even in the summer. Since we are approaching some cooler weather now, I thought it might be a good time to share the recipe with you. Warning though, if we are ever in a chili cook off together, you can’t use this recipe ;-).
- 2 pounds of ground turkey
- 1 32 oz can of tomato sauce (edited…I originally said 1 15oz can but that isn’t enough! oops!)
- 1 can of Rotel diced tomatoes-I usually go for the hot can with habaneros (~8 oz can)
- 1 can pinto beans
- 1 can of Hunt’s Fire Roasted Diced tomatoes (8 oz can)
- 4 large peppers (I use 2 red and 2 green)
- 2 medium size onions (I like a lot of onions)
- Chili powder (I don’t ever measure, but the more the merrier in my opinion)
- Garlic (again I don’t measure, I just dump about 2 spoonfuls in)
- Salt and pepper (just a dusting-usually a teaspoon or two)
- Tablespoon of sugar-only if you want to offset the heat from the habanero a little bit
- 1 small habanero chopped very fine (sometimes I use two depending on how hot we want it)
- 1 jalapeño (sliced thin for topping)
- Green onions (sliced for topping)
- Cook the ground turkey and drain.
- Chop the peppers and onions into small pieces (and habanero into very tiny, fine pieces).
- Combine the tomato sauce, two cans of diced tomatoes, cooked ground turkey, garlic, salt, pepper, habanero, chili powder, and sugar into crock pot and stir.
- Cook on low for around 5-6 hours (High for around 3-4 hours).
- When there are two hours left before you want to eat, add the beans (I drain the liquid out of the can before putting into crock pot) and stir. Adding them later, prevents them from getting too soggy. Also, at this time add some more chili powder. I believe you can never have too much chili powder.
- When ready, add a little more chili powder and stir one last time-ready to serve!
- Top with chopped green onions and jalapeño.
- When the weather starts getting colder, I like to eat this with garlic bread and beer. Football game in background can be an added bonus.
- The time for cooking is variable. Sometimes I only do 5 hours on Low setting, sometime I can do up to 7 hours. I haven’t found it to be too big a deal, as long as you don’t forget about it! If I am cramped for time (i.e. forgot to get prepare it earlier in the day), I will put it on High setting for about 3ish hours, still waiting to add the beans until 2 hours left.
- Majority of the ingredients can be changed to taste. I like a meatier chili so I use two pounds. I also love garlic so I put a lot of that in.
- I use ground turkey instead of beef. I don’t think you can usually tell the difference between the two and since I eat it a lot, I feel healthier using ground turkey. No big deal if you want to use beef instead.
- I LOVE leftovers so I probably make more than is necessary. I believe my recipe makes around 6-8 servings (if not more, we like big servings in this household).
- If you haven’t heard of crock pot liners, let me tell you, they are the best invention ever. Makes clean up super easy. They are in the same aisle in the grocery store as aluminum foil and baggies.