My Go-To Chili

Anyone who cooks for a family and deals with the surprises life can send our way eventually develops a short list of recipes we can whip up in an emergency. These are the “go-to” recipes that help us quickly get a meal on the table despite the whirlwind of activity that hits during the day. Recently I had occasion to make Black Bean Chili, one of my go-to recipes, for a friend who was dealing with a difficult time. Talking with her about how easy this recipe is made me think about passing it on to you.

Black Bean Chili is made from ingredients I always keep in the house (ground meat, yellow onions, black beans, etc.) so I can manage to get a meal on the table within 60 minutes, start to finish. It allows for simple substitutions. I usually use ground turkey but ground beef (or I suppose ground pork too) will work fine. Black beans provide a nice flavor but any canned beans you like will work just as well. And of course you can adjust the heat of the chili just by adding more or less chili powder. So here it is – my go-to chili.



Black Bean Chili
  • 1 pound ground beef or turkey
  • ½ yellow onion
  • 1-2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can stewed tomatoes
  • 8 ounces tomato sauce
  • 4 ounces chopped jalapenos
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1-2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 2-3 shakes of cayenne pepper
  1. Dice the yellow onion. Remove black beans from the can, rinse, and drain. In a Dutch oven combine ground meat and diced onion and cook until meat no longer shows pink. Drain any liquid and discard. Add in all other ingredients and stir to combine. Bring to a boil, cover, and simmer for about 30 minutes.

Pearls of Wisdom

You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.

— Jack London

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