This recipe for My Best Chili is a major favorite around here! It’s a hearty, warming chili made with ground beef, bacon, sausage, and just the right amount of kick.
I bet you’re guessing you’re on the wrong website right now…right?? 😁 Chili is not usually the typical fare that you see around here…but, little known to most, lurking in the back of my recipe archives, are a couple savory recipes lurking around, just waiting to be discovered and devoured by you.
I posted the recipe for my “best chili” way back in December of 2010, only a couple of months after Bakerita was founded. I shared more savory recipes back then, and because I was a new blogger, my pictures could only be described as terrible.
I’ve made this recipe so many times over the years, and I’ve heard from some of you who it’s become a staple for as well. Since we’re heading firmly into cold soup territory where the weather is concerned, I decided to was time to finally update the photos, and give you a taste of one of my savory favorites.
Chili is one of my favorite cold weather foods – it’s thick and hearty, and seriously soul-warming. I always go for a sprinkle of cheese on top, too, and you could add a little sour cream and/or avocado if that’s your thing. Oooh…or serve it with cornbread, which makes pretty much the perfect meal for any chilly day, especially game day!
My overzealous, newly blogging self named this the “best” chili, but I know how subjective that is based on the person. So I’m calling it my best chili, because for me it’s perfect…but we all have different tastes. Like…I’m a bit of a spice wimp, so be sure to jack up the amount of chili powder if you want a lot of kick.
HOWEVER, my best is apparently the same as the best for a lot of you, because this recipe gets RAVE reviews. You guys have won chili cook-offs with it, had your chili-hating kids love it, and made XL batches to keep in the freezer all winter long. Just scroll through the comments to see how many people love this one.
And why it’s so dang good? This BEST chili is tomato-based with ground beef, crumbled Italian sausage, and it’s got BACON! It’s also loaded pinto and black beans, and a whole load of spices. It’s flavorful, warming, easy, and delicious. The best kind of meal, right?
I always try to let this cook for as long as I can. It can be done in about 2 hours, but with chili, I always think that low and slow is the way to go to get a thick, flavorful chili. It’s great the day of, and I think the leftovers are even better because it gives a little time for the flavors to meld and get even more bold.
I hope my favorite, best chili recipe will be loved by you and help warm your soul a bit in this cooler weather! Enjoy :)
Remember to #bakerita if you try the recipe!
My Best Chili
- 2 pounds ground beef I used leaner beef with 5% fat
- 1 pound bulk Italian sausage mild, casings removed
- ½ pound bacon
- 2 (15 oz) cans kidney beans, drained
- 1 (15 oz) can pinto beans, drained
- 1 (15 oz) can black beans, drained
- 2 (28 oz) cans diced tomatoes with juice
- 1 (6 oz) can tomato paste
- 1 large yellow onion chopped
- 1 red bell pepper seeded and chopped
- 2 cups beef stock see Notes
- 3 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce make sure to find gluten-free if necessary, or leave it out
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon paprika
Heat a large stock pot over medium-high heat. Crumble the ground chuck and sausage into the hot pan, and cook until evenly browned. Drain off excess grease.
In a different pan, cook the bacon until crispy. Crumble and add to stock pot. Cook the chopped onion and pepper in the bacon drippings for about 5 minutes or until onions are translucent. Add to the stock pot.
To the stock pot, add in the drained beans, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, and beef stock. Season with chili powder, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, oregano, cumin, basil, salt, pepper, and paprika. Stir to blend, then cover and simmer over low heat for at least 2 hours, stirring occasionally.
After 2 hours, taste, and adjust salt, pepper, and chili powder if necessary. The longer the chili simmers, the better it will taste.
Remove from heat and serve, or refrigerate, and serve the next day. Serve with cheese, onions, sour cream, or whatever chili toppings you prefer!
I used to use 1 cup of beer and 1 cup of concentrated beef stock (water + 4 boullion cubes), but now I use all beef stock to keep it gluten-free. Use the beer if gluten doesn't matter to you!
Want more chili?!
If you don’t like beans or just want a beanless chili recipe, try my PALEO CHILI!
If you’re looking for a vegan chili recipe, try my WHITE BEAN VEGAN CHILI!