President-Elect Obama’s Inauguration Party – Serve This Chili

January 18, 2009

Smoky Beef-and-Bacon Chili from Sunset

For inauguration night or any night this week or weekend, try President Obama’s favorite food-chili. This chili is really special with the addition of turkey bacon, smoked paprika and fire-roasted tomatoes. If you can’t find fire-roasted tomatoes or smoked paprika, feel free to use regular. You can also omit the bacon, if you would like, and can substitute your favorite beans for the pintos. Happy inaugeration and enjoy!

Fire-Roasted Chili

Prep: 10 minutes

Cook: 45 minutes

Yield: Makes 6 servings


2  slices turkey bacon, finely chopped

1  large onion, finely chopped

1  large garlic clove, minced

1 1/2  pounds  lean ground beef

1  tablespoon  plus 1 1/2 tsp. chili powder

1 1/2  teaspoons  ground cumin

1 1/2  teaspoons smoked Spanish paprika 

1/2  teaspoon  to 1 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper

1  can (14.5 oz.) crushed fire-roasted tomatoes or regular crushed tomatoes

1  can (8 oz.) tomato sauce

1  cup light beer

1  teaspoon  Worcestershire (optional)

1  can (14.5 oz.) pinto beans, rinsed and drained

Sour cream, sliced scallions, and/or grated cheddar for topping


1. In a large lightly greased Dutch oven, cook turkey bacon, stirring until it just begins to brown, about 4 minutes. Add onion, lower heat to medium, cover, and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, 4 to 7 minutes. Uncover pan, stir in garlic, and cook 1 minute.

2. Increase heat to medium-high and add ground beef; break it up with a wooden spoon and stir gently until it loses its raw color, 6 to 8 minutes. Stir in spices and 1 tsp. salt and cook 1 minute. Add tomatoes, tomato sauce, beer, and Worcestershire and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover partially, and cook 30 minutes.

3. Add beans and cook 10 minutes, uncovered. Season to taste with additional salt, if desired. Serve warm, with toppings on the side.

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