beef + three-bean chili

by Amy on 25 October 2010

first, i’m happy to announce that the winner of my smoked spices giveaway is emily! congrats emily, you now will get to cook using that smoked sugar that you were excited about trying! i can’t wait to hear about what you make with it.

one of my favorite things about fall is the return of football. at our house, sundays are devoted to watching nfl + cooking, a perfect combination. the food i most associate with football is chili + the recipe below is my absolute favorite. it is a rich, comforting chili with a tons of flavor dimension.

a few notes: if serving this to a group, i generally do not make it spicy, as spiciness preferences vary greatly among people. to add a bit of heat, try adding 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes. the amount of beans you use also depends on your preference – i generally use 4-5 cans of beans per pound of beef, as my honey loves beans. if you’re not as bean-crazy, try 2-3 cans.

yesterday was a wonderful day – we went to the Titans game + watched them win *and* ate this delicious chili. i hope your favorite team also scored a victory + you get the opportunity to make this chili soon – you’ll love it!

beef + three-bean chili

makes 8-10 servings, adapted from bon appetit


2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
6 large garlic cloves, chopped
1 pound ground beef
5 tablespoons chili powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
1 14 1/2-ounce can chicken broth (or chicken stock)
1 bottle of beer (preferably a rich lager or porter)
1 6-ounce can tomato paste
3-5 cans of beans (black beans, kidney beans, + small red beans, or feel free to mix up the types)


heat oil in a heavy large pot or dutch oven over medium heat. add onions + garlic, saute until onions are translucent, about 8 minutes.

add beef + saute until brown, breaking up meat with the back of spoon, about 5 minutes. add chili powder, cumin, basil, oregano + thyme, stir for 2 minutes.

add in crushed tomatoes, beans, chicken broth, beer + tomato paste. simmer until thickened to desired consistency, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking, about 1 hour + 15 minutes. season to taste with salt and pepper.

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Rebecca Cronin October 31, 2010 at 3:02 pm

Ok So I have just made this Chili and it is simply delicious. I did a few things different I added sirloin steak as well as ground beef ( my husband is a big meat eater) and after browning it I put it in the crock pot for the afternoon.
It IS SOOOOOO GOOD. The beer totally makes it
Thanks for the great recipe.

2 amy October 31, 2010 at 6:30 pm

i love your adaptations, rebecca. sounds amazing + glad you two enjoyed it!

3 Jennifer Sohn November 7, 2010 at 9:45 pm

The chili was so yummy! Even my husband liked it (and he usually doesn’t like my cooking very much)! :) Thanks Amy!

4 amy November 8, 2010 at 8:22 am

i’m so glad you tried the chili + that’s fabulous that even hubby liked it! hugs to you two + the little one. =)

5 bek davis December 12, 2010 at 4:22 pm

sounds yummy amy! Beer adds a different dimension to chili. 😉

6 amy December 12, 2010 at 7:01 pm

it so does! i think that’s one of the things that makes this chili so good. although, frankly, beer makes everything better. =) can’t wait to try your recipe!

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