Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Smokey Beef and Vegetable Chili

Have you heard of the idea of food expanders? Hungry Girl talks a lot about this idea. It is adding vegetables to reduce carbs and high fat proteins. She appeared on Dr. Oz (video) and talked about it there too. She uses cauliflower as a swap for potatoes, spaghetti squash for pasta, portabella mushrooms for beef, and so on. Well I decided I wanted to try to expand my favorite chili recipe. I used mushrooms for half the beef in the Wendy’s Clone Chili recipe. I also increased the amount of each veggie and added a bell pepper. It turned out great! It is loaded with veggies and smokey from substituting fire roasted tomatoes for plain canned tomatoes. Be aware it is a 2 or 3-alarm chili. I used original Rotel tomatoes, if you are sensitive to spicy foods try using mild Rotel. This recipe is one that only gets better the next day.

Smokey Beef and Vegetable Chili
Makes about 10 cups; Serves 6 to 8

2 tsp. olive oil
8 oz lean ground beef (93% lean)
8 oz cremini (baby bella) mushrooms, chopped
1 medium onion, diced
1 bell pepper, chopped
2 ribs celery, chopped
1 (6 oz) can tomato paste
2 Tablespoons chili powder
1/2 Tablespoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1 (10 oz) can tomatoes with diced green chilies (with liquid)
1 (15 oz) can of fire roasted diced tomatoes (with liquid)
1 (15 oz) can of red kidney beans (drained and rinsed)
1 (15 oz) can of pinto beans (drained and rinsed)
2 cups water

Heat olive oil in a dutch oven over medium heat; brown the ground beef, breaking into small pieces with the spoon. Add a dash of salt and pepper while cooking.

Add mushrooms, onion, bell pepper and celery to dutch oven, cook until onion is translucent. Add tomato paste and spices, stir and cook until fragrant, add the remaining ingredients. Stir until all ingredients are combined thoroughly.

Over medium heat, bring to a simmer. Reduce the burner to low, cover and continue simmering 50−60 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Linking to:
See Ya in the Gumbo
Miz Helen Country Cottage: Texas Star Chili Cook Off 2013
Tumbleweed Contessa: 2014 Super Bowl and Chili Party


  1. I didn't know there was a term for it! My husband has been following a low carb diet for the past two months and I've been swapping out some ingredients for others (like cauliflower for potatoes). I really like the idea of using mushrooms for some of the beef and increasing the amount of veg in this chili. Thanks for linking! And Merry Christmas!

    1. Merry Christmas! Michelle and thanks for stopping by. Maybe if we use "expanders" we won't expand this Christmas? :)

  2. Hi Denise,
    Your Smokey Beef and Vegetable Chili looks delicious, I love your combination of seasons for this Chili. Thank you so much for sharing it with Texas Star Chili Cook Off and the very best of luck to you!
    Miz Helen


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