fall comfort food - healthy chili

by jacin on November 13, 2010

hi all - i made this last week per pat’s request for a healthy chili with lots of protein and if i do say so myself, it was really good!!  so for those of you who are lighting up the spiced pumpkin candle with the peppermint mocha in hand, perhaps wearing a snuggie in front of the fire, this recipe is for you to warm up your fall day :)

personal blackberry photo


  • 6 ounces hot turkey Italian sausage (~2 sausages) 
  • 2 cups chopped vidalia onion (1 medium sized onion) 
  • 1 cup chopped green bell pepper (i used the whole pepper)
  • 8 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 pound ground sirloin (lean meat)
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, chopped (i removed the seeds to remove some of the heat, but leave them in if you like extra spicy)
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste (i ended up using the whole jar)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (i DEFINITELY used more salt)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 1/4 cups Merlot or other fruity red wine
  • 2 (28-ounce) cans whole tomatoes, undrained and coarsely chopped
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans kidney beans, drained
  • 1/2 cup (2 ounces) shredded reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese

Heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Remove casings from sausage. Add sausage, onion, and the next 4 ingredients (onion through jalapeño) to pan; cook 8 minutes or until sausage and beef are browned, stirring to crumble.

Add chili powder and the next 7 ingredients (chili powder through bay leaves), and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in wine, tomatoes, and kidney beans; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 1 hour, stirring occasionally.

Uncover and cook for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Discard the bay leaves. Sprinkle each serving with cheddar cheese.

Note: Like most chilis, this version tastes even better the next day.


{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Krissy167 Make Believe'N November 13, 2010 at 7:19 AM

Wow that sounds amazing! Drooling here.


Jessica November 13, 2010 at 9:31 AM

Yum! It's definitely that time of year, time for a big pot of chili!


Nicole Ebbitt November 13, 2010 at 10:18 AM

Looks grubbin!! Thx for sharing!


Frugalista November 13, 2010 at 11:15 AM

Yummy! I LOVE chili. The next time I make it was thinking about doubling the recipe like it seems to be here 'cause it never lasts long enough even with just the two of us.


steph c November 14, 2010 at 7:36 AM

This sounds delicious! It just might have to be made tonight :))


Faith November 15, 2010 at 3:09 PM

that sounds amazing! the hubs will def. like this. thanks for the recipe!


JMay November 15, 2010 at 10:35 PM

Thank you for this recipe, yay! :-)


Nicole November 18, 2010 at 7:26 AM

take out the beans and I might just have to try this. :)


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