As most of us who have graduated to the adult task of doing our own grocery shopping have learned, it really is cheaper to buy things in bulk (hey there, Costco). We tend to do this with meats—chicken, ground turkey/beef, porkchops, etc. are all WAY less expensive per serving when you buy them in massive quantities. The next logical progression, then, is cooking in bulk: It’s only slightly more effort than preparing a single meal’s worth of food, and the leftovers are waiting for you in the freezer for a day you just don’t feel like cooking.
Chili is particularly well-suited for bulk batches, since one-pot dishes are obviously the easiest and best kind of meals for lazy people like us. Every time we make chili, we try something a little different (aka, we totally wing it because we keep forgetting to write down what we added last time). Our most recent chili endeavor was by far our most successful, so we FINALLY took the time to document this winning recipe. We had some leftover corn after using some to make a copycat Chipotle corn salsa on Cinco de Quatro (yes, de Quatro), so we decided to add it to the chili. We couldn’t figure out why we never thought to do this before—it adds a whole new dimension to your standard beans-and-tomato chili, not to mention more volume to stretch the number of servings even farther. We like to pile our chili on top of rice or pasta, but it, of course, makes a great meal on its own.
-Nicole & Christie
Loaded Turkey Chili
Makes 8-10 servings
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 clove minced garlic
2 lbs. ground turkey or meat of choice
1 28-oz. can of diced tomatoes
1 14-oz. can pinto beans
1 14-oz. can black beans
1 14-oz. can red kidney beans
1 cup fresh or frozen* corn kernels (fresh off the cob is best!)
1 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. dried basil
1/2 tsp. cocoa powder (trust us, it works)
1 tbsp. granulated sugar
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tbsp. cornstarch
Heat oil in a large pot. Add onions and garlic and cook 5-7 minutes or until onions are translucent.
Add turkey and cook until thoroughly browned.
Add all remaining ingredients except cornstarch and stir to combine (do not drain beans before adding). Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
After 30 minutes, stir in cornstarch and simmer for an additional 10-15 minutes. Top with your favorite cheese and sour cream if desired. Store leftovers in freezer-safe container for up to 2 months (but you’ll probably eat it all before then anyway!).
*If using frozen corn, defrost and add during the last 5 minutes of cooking.