Chilly Chili

As it is the season of holiday parties galore and pot lucks, I made this dish for my office holiday part. I should start by saying this dish took me multiple days because I soaked the beans for 24 hrs (when I told one of my friends I was soaking the beans, he was a bit worried I only had done it for 20 minutes, but I some how remembered beans have to soak for a long time. The rest of the recipe did not go as smoothly.) and then had the recipe itself sit over night in the fridge. This helped with the flavors, but I missed some other important parts of the recipe.



– 5 lbs lean meat ground turkey (the original calls for a mix of beef and turkey, but I don’t like beef so oh well)
– 5 large garlic cloves minced
– 1 large yellow onion
– 3 cans of 14 oz diced tomatoes with sauce
– 1 can of 29 oz of tomato sauce (the original calls for 2 cans of 14 oz of tomato sauce, but you get more sign for your buck if you be just buy the 29 ouncer)
– 3/4 cup tomato sauce
– 1 can of 15 oz black beans rinsed and drained
– 1 can of 15 oz kidney beans rinsed and drained
– 1 tbsp corn meal (this will be explained later)
– 6 tbsp of chili powder
– 2 tsp dried oregano (the original calls for Mexican oregano, I will explains this as well)
– 3 tsp ground cumin
– 1/2 cup brown sugar
– salt and black pepper for taste
– (there should also be some beef stock, and I will explain why this is missing as well)

So this recipe was again made for a holiday party with about 20 people, so I went big! Just an FYI, this recipe needs way more than just one crock pot or just one really big one. I found this out the hard way.

Let’s start with my grocery shopping experience for this recipe. First of all I had made a mental list while at work of all of the things that I would need for this recipe. In my mind, I had corn starch, so I didn’t even put that on my list. False. I had corn meal at home, not corn starch. Hence, why I put in 2 tbsp of corn meal instead of the 1/3 cup of corn starch. Who knows how it would have tasted had this been different? (People who cook regularly probably know, but I am still learning). Next, while reading the ingredients I decided that I had oregano, and in fact I did, just not Mexican oregano. Another ingredient that may have changed the taste of the chili, but it did enjoy the oregano I used. (I have really got to start reading all the details.)

To start off the recipe it calls for the browning of the ground turkey. This actually took a while, as fitting 5 lbs of turkey into one frying pan doesn’t really happen. Trying to put 2 lbs in was really the top/max. So I browned the ground turkey 2 lbs at a time and 1 lbs at the end. While those were browning, I cut up the yellow onion and the garlic. To be honest, I wouldn’t suggest cutting while the turkey is browning if you have never brown ground turkey before, cause it browns quicker than I expected. The first batch definitely was way more than brown. It was crispy on one side.

Next came the cans: tomato sauce, diced tomatoes with juice, and both beans. At this point, I have two crockpots going. There was so much food, so the rest I ended up splitting the rest of the ingredients into each crockpot, and it just didn’t put in any stock of any kind. Two reasons there: there wasn’t any beef, so did I need beef stock? No. Secondly, there really wasn’t any room for any kind of stock in either of the crock pots, so oh well. Then came the ketchup, the brown sugar, chili powder, oregano, cumin and corn meal (which should have been corn starch). Then I put the two crockpots on low for 8hrs. At this point the chili had set/seemed to only need one crockpot and a bowl, so the chili was condensed. (My roommate also needed her crockpot back, so as Tim Gunn says “Make it work!”.)

So much Chili!


Well reheating the chili after having it in the fridge proved to be difficult, so if the chili had been warm, then it would have been awesome. No one complained, and most got second. I did add avocados, sour cream, cheese and chips as an option to add to the chili. I would make this again,but a smaller batch and make sure I have a chance to heat it up all the way.

The Nitty Gritty:
– Total Costs: $45.00 – the meat was the most expensive
– Total Time: 45 minutes of prep, 8 hrs of cooking and 1.5 hrs of reheating, so 10.25 hrs
– Serving Size: 18 -22 people


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