Creating recipes isn't a pastime—it's a passion. And a lot of fun.

The rules are few: Use 99% fresh ingredients (or thereabouts); make the dish simple but flavorful; make the dish flavorful but simple; be creative, not silly.

With this blog, I want to share new recipes, along with tips on ingredients and preparation, and, hopefully, show new cooks (and non-cooks) the pleasure in setting the table with a delicious homemade meal. The Briny Lemon is about fresh, simple, flavorful ingredients and easy cooking methods that help you bring the best to your family table. Your comments are welcome!

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Slow-Cooker Chipotle Chili

Chili recipes are as plentiful as chili cooks—and that’s a good thing. For the most part. As with any recipe, too many ingredients (and especially too many “odd” ingredients) can turn a good, old-fashioned hearty dish into…well, something else.

This recipe keeps it simple with typical ground beef, tomatoes, fresh vegetables, spices, and beans (sorry, Texas). For a little extra kick and smoky flavor, I added chipotle chiles, then let everything come together low and slow in a slow-cooker.

I also added tomato paste toward the end of cooking because we like a thicker chili in my house. If the consistency is already how you like it after six to seven hours, then skip the tomato paste.

Lose the beans and check out Texas-Style Chili with Dried-Chile Broth.

Serves 5-6

  • 1 lb ground sirloin
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 28-oz can stewed tomatoes, with juice
  • 3 chipotle chiles in adobo sauce, finely chopped
  • 2 cayenne chiles, finely chopped
  • 1 small celery rib, chopped
  • 1/2 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 15-oz can dark red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 tbsp chile powder
  • 1 tbsp ground cumin
  • sea salt
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • chopped scallions and shredded cheddar-mozzarella mixed cheese for serving (optional)
Chili Ingredients 
Prepared Ingredients
  1. Heat a skillet over medium heat and add the sirloin, garlic, and onion. Cook until the beef is browned, 6-7 minutes.
  2. Transfer the sirloin mixture with a slotted spoon to a slow cooker and add the next 8 ingredients (through cumin). Season with salt. (Tip: Crush the tomatoes in your fingers as you add them to break them into smaller pieces and bring out their juices.)
Sirloin Mixture Beginning to Cook 
Browned Sirloin
Transfer with a Slotted Spoon 
Crush Tomatoes with Your Fingers
Chili Ready to Cook
  1. Cover and cook on low 6 hours. 
  2. Stir in the tomato paste and taste for seasoning, adding more salt, if needed. Cook 1 hour longer.
Tomato Paste Added 
Cooked Chili 
Divide the chili among 5-6 bowls and serve with chopped scallions and cheese, if desired.

Slow Cooker Chipotle Chili

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