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My Chili Recipe

Much to my chagrin, I never wrote down the recipe for the best Chili I ever made, the award-winning “BeLieVe in Heaven” Chili with Buffalo, Lamb, and Veal. Nevertheless, I’ve been using this recipe for a while (since I’ve been in the UK) and it’s a great base to riff off of for a variety of great dishes. It is based on The Best Classic Chili recipe from The Wholesome Dish.


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large onion (diced)
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 2 tbsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • (optional) ground cayenne pepper for some heat
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • 1 can tomatoes
  • 1.5 cups beef broth
  • 1 can red kidney beans


  1. Add olive oil to a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Warm oil until it shimmers, then add the diced onion. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions are translucent and beginning to brown. Press in the garlic and cook for a minute, then add the meat. Stir the meat to brown it evenly for 5 more minutes.
  2. Add the tomato paste and spices – chili powder, cumin, salt, and pepper(s), and stir these in. Next add the can of tomatoes, the tomato sauce, the beef broth, and the beans.
  3. Lower heat to medium-low, cover the pan, and let simmer for 20 minutes or more. Serve with cheese, nachos, rice, tacos, or whatever you wish. Enjoy.


It’s easy to riff on this basic recipe for many tasty variants. Try it with sweetcorn, add black beans, or swap in turkey for the beef for other tastes.