Chili is something we love to enjoy all year round. Whether it's hot out or cold out. For dinner at the table or left over chili packaged up for lunch. Everyone has their go to chili recipe, but I am inviting you to try something new with this one. I love having one recipe that can do it all. So this recipe has two parts. A great slow cooked Sunday recipe: Slow Simmered Chicken Chili and a weeknight warrior: 30 Minute Vegetarian Chili. You can't go wrong with either one.
These two recipes are super simple and easily customizeable to whatever you and your family would enjoy.
As usual, fresh is best. If you go to the store and see that the red bell peppers are soft and wrinkled. Swap it out for another sweet pepper that looks more fresh and flavorful. Yellow or orange bell peppers are a great alternative! Cutting corn right off the cob and adding it in is better than canned, but canned is fine as long as its drained and rinsed.
Freshly ground spices are the way to go. Buy black peppercorns whole and use a small spice grinder, coffee grinder, or mortar and pestle to grind pepper to use in your recipes for the day or week. Ground pepper as well as most spices looses flavor extremely fast as it sits and drys out. When you grind pepper fresh for a recipe you are able to really taste the deep, warm and floral notes. You wont get the same amount of heat if you use pre-ground black pepper. I also like to keep my dried chipotle peppers in a tightly sealed mason jar and grind them when I am ready to use them.
Toasting the spices is an important step to maximize the flavor in any recipe. The heat helps release the natural oils and flavor inside ground spices. You know the spices are sufficiently toasted when you start to smell their strong aroma in the kitchen. Be sure not to leave spices on dry heat too long in order to keep them from burning. Stirring often for about a minute should be adequate.
Toppings are personal. So use what you like! Our suggestions are what we had in the fridge and what we think tastes yummy. If you've got something else on hand, go for it! Recipes are never rules after all.
Added bonus: If you don't want to eat or don't have store bought tortilla chips, make some! Cut tortillas into chips and lay them on a tray sprayed with a little olive oil. Spray the tops with a little more olive oil, sprinkle with salt, and bake in a 400F oven for 8-10 minutes until crispy and brown.
Slow Simmered Chicken Chili
2 Tbsp Olive oil
1 Onion (chopped)
1 Green Bell Pepper (chopped)
1 Red Bell Pepper (chopped)
2 Cloves Garlic (minced)
2 Tsp Freshly Ground Black Pepper
1 tsp Salt
1 tsp Ground Cumin
1 Tsp Ground Chipotle Chile
28 oz Crushed Tomato or Tomato puree
2 cups Water
2 Chicken Breasts
15 oz canned Black Beans (drained and rinsed)
15 oz canned Red Kidney Beans (drained and rinsed)
15 oz Corn (fresh or canned - drained and rinsed)
Move your oven rack to the bottom of the oven and preheat to 350F
Heat oil in a large dutch oven and add the roughly chopped onion and bell peppers. sweat for 5 -6 minutes until the begin to color
Stir in garlic and cook for 2 minutes
Add salt, black pepper, cumin, and chipotle powders and cook for one minute stirring often
Pour in tomato and water. Bring to a boil and turn off the heat.
Drop in two whole Chicken Breasts, cover with a lid and place the pot in the oven
Cook for 2 hours
Take the pot out of the oven, taste for seasoning (add salt if necessary)
Spoon out the chicken breasts and shred using two forks.
Add the shredded chicken, beans and corn, and cook on stove top for and additional 30 minutes until slightly reduced and thick. Stir often.
Serve warm topped with cheese, avocado, radishes, sliced jalapeno, and fresh cilantro
For Vegetarian 30 minute chili: Forget the oven. Follow steps 2-5, then add in the beans and corn. Cook without a lid for 30 minutes on stove top until chili is reduced to a thick consistency. Stir often. Serve warm with vegetarian or vegan toppings.
Try them both and let us know your favorite below!