I’ll be the first to admit to you that there isn’t really anything special about this chili recipe.  It’s (with a few adjustments) the chili that I grew up eating.  It’s comforting.  It’s part of my childhood in a bowl.  The smell of this chili simmering on the stove all day on a Sunday reminds me of home.  There are many wonderful chili recipes out there that include great ingredients like beer, fresh herbs, various kinds of beans and other fancy additions but there’s nothing fancy here.  And I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Why post it then?  When I started this blog I wanted a place to electronically document my recipes.  It has turned out to be so much more than that.  It’s easy to get caught up in site stats, SEO, and ad clicks which cloud the reason that I’m really doing this.  I didn’t start my blog to be concerned with how many people read it every day.  I started my blog to share the foods that I love with the people that I love.  I’m so blessed that people actually do read it.  I’m actually shocked that so many people read it!  I love it is so much, I love YOU so much!

Sometimes it’s just nice to get back to the basics.

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Classic Chili Recipe

Yield: 8 servings

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 4-8 hours

A simple and hearty recipe for classic chili that I grew up eating - ground beef, beans, tomatoes and spices.


1 1/4 pound ground beef
2 Tbs. olive oil
1 Tbs. butter
1/2 cup onion, diced
1/2 cup green pepper, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 (10-ounce) can Ro-Tel, drained
1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes
2 (15-ounce) cans kidney beans, drained
2.5 Tbs. chili seasoning mix (store-bought or homemade)
1 Tbs. tomato paste
1 (46-ounce) container tomato juice

Sliced green onion
Cheddar cheese
Sour cream


Crumble beef into a large stock pot and cook until the meat is fully cooked. I always drain the beef and wipe out the pan simply to cut out some fat. This is optional. Set aside the beef.

Heat the oil and butter in the same pan, add the onions, garlic and bell pepper and cook for about 6 minutes, until the pepper is softened. Add the ground beef back to the pot.

Add in the Ro-Tel, diced tomatoes, kidney beans, chili seasoning and tomato paste. Stir to combine. Slowly add in the tomato juice. Bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer on low heat at least 4 hours, up to 8 hours.

Ladle into soup crocks, top with your favorite toppings and enjoy.

Cassie's Notes:
My homemade chili seasoning recipe can be found by clicking here.

Make this chili a little healthier by using ground turkey or ground chicken in the place of ground beef. Or, skip the meat altogether and double the beans for a thick and hearty vegetarian chili!