Healthy Chili on a Chilly Day

I love a warm bowl of chili on a chilly day when the weather is beyond brisk and down right cold.¬†Here’s my quick and easy go-to chili recipe that I find is both tasty and healthy. I like to use grass fed beef, it has little grease and tastes better to me. I love this on days when the temperature is below freezing outside!


1 Tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion – diced (or chunked)
1 sweet red pepper – diced (or chunked)
1/4 pound of beef
1 (15 oz) can of kidney beans – drained & rinsed
1 can of water (I use the kidney bean can as the measuring can)
1 can of Ro*tel diced tomatoes with chopped green chilies
1 shake of cinnamon

Heat the olive oil on medium heat and add the onion. I like to use a deep frying pan so I can make the entire chili using only one pan. (Less to clean up later.) Stir the onions lightly until almost translucent. (I think that is called saute, right?) Add red pepper for another minute or two. Remove both and put in small bowl. Sometimes I make the onions and peppers small, but other times when I make it, I like chunks of veggies. So it ends up more like a chili stew.

Brown the ground beef. Separate it as you cook it on medium heat. Add the onions and peppers back into the pan. Drain and rinse the kidney beans and add to beef mixture. Add a can of water. Add diced tomatoes.

Simmer. Add a shake or two of cinnamon to taste. That’s my *secret* ingredient. Cook on medium heat for about 10 minutes to let the favors mix together. I like to have it with some shredded cheddar cheese on top or over a small bowl of whole grain spaghetti. (I use the same bowl that I put the onions and peppers in while the ground beef was browning.)

If you like it a little more spicy, you can add some chili powder. Some people like to saute some garlic before they brown the meat. If your meat has a lot of fat, you may want to drain before adding in the onions and peppers. Or you might want more or less water. Or add some tomato sauce.

Adding more vegetables makes it more bulky and more healthy in my opinion. Ive been known to microwave sliced carrots and celery to add. Or stir in some spinach for more nutrition.

Everyone I talk with about chili has their own favorite recipe or ingredient for making a delicious bowl of chili.¬† What’s yours?

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