Spice Up Your Day with This Delicious Chili Recipe

Listen, friends. Do you crave a home cooked meal that warms you up inside and out? Are you looking for a recipe to satisfy that hankering for something hearty and savory? Then look no further, because I have just the recipe for you: Grandma’s Chili Recipe.

Now, I know what you might be thinking. “Another chili recipe? What makes this one so special?” But let me tell you, this isn’t just any old chili recipe. This is my grandma’s homemade chili, perfected over years of trial and error until it was just right. This is the kind of chili that’s so good, every time I make it, people ask me for the recipe. And now, dear reader, I’m sharing it with you.

This isn’t your average ground beef and beans sort of chili. Oh no, there’s much more to it than that. We’re talking stewed tomatoes, green bell peppers, onions, and just the right amount of spice from chili powder and other secret ingredients that make all the difference in creating this legendary dish.

So if you’re ready to experience true homemade chili like Grandma used to make (and maybe even better), then roll up your sleeves and let’s get cooking. Trust me when I say – you won’t regret it.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Grandma's Chili
Grandma’s Chili

Picture this: a cold winter evening, or a sunny summer day, when you’re craving comfort food. What is the perfect solution for filling up your belly and warming your soul? That’s right, a bowl of delicious chili! And not just any chili, but my grandma’s old-fashioned homemade chili recipe.

Let me tell you why you’re going to love it. First of all, it’s jam-packed with flavor. The secret ingredients, like onions and garlic, add depth and complexity to the dish, while the signature mix of chili powder and cumin gives it that classic Southwestern taste. Plus, the addition of stewed tomatoes and tomato sauce makes it extra hearty and thick.

Secondly, this recipe offers a lot of versatility. You can easily adjust the spice level to your liking by adding more or less chili powder and pepper. By swapping out or adding different types of beans such as kidney beans or chili beans , you can make numerous variations without sacrificing flavor.

Thirdly, my grandma’s recipe is simple to make – no need to be a master chef in order to pull this off! Just brown some ground beef in a large pot with diced onions and bell peppers and add the rest of the ingredients gradually. This means anyone can follow along with ease!

Last but not least, this recipe is perfect for serving a crowd or meal prepping for busy weeknights (trust me!). The leftovers taste even better than the first day because all the flavors have had time to meld together.

In conclusion, there are countless reasons to love my grandma’s old-fashioned homemade chili recipe – from its rich flavors to its simplicity in execution. Fall in love with this recipe and take comfort in knowing that with every spoonful taken you’re carrying forth another family tradition.

Ingredient List

 A piping hot bowl of comfort on a chilly day
A piping hot bowl of comfort on a chilly day

Before we start preparing Grandma’s Chili recipe, let’s gather the necessary ingredients. You’ll need 2 pounds of ground beef, preferably chuck, 3 cans of chili beans (15 ounce each), 2 cans of stewed tomatoes (5 ounce each), 1 large yellow onion, diced, 1 green bell pepper, diced, and 1 can of tomato sauce (8 ounces).

For added flavor, take out your spices from the pantry and grab a tablespoon of chili powder and half teaspoon each of salt and pepper. Don’t forget the garlic! You’ll need two cloves, minced.

Now it’s time to add a little sweetness. Bring out one tablespoon each of sugar and flour. If you like it spicy, you may want to increase the amount of chili powder – but be careful not to overdo.

To complete the list, add 1 cup of water or beef broth.

TIP: For best results, use fresh herbs like cilantro or parsley to top off your homemade chili.

The Recipe How-To


Now, let me take you through the How-To for this mouthwatering grandma’s chili recipe. Finding the perfect balance of flavors is key to making a delicious chili, and this recipe is no exception. So let’s get straight to it.


Here are the ingredients you need to make Grandma’s Chili Recipe:

  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 2 (15 ounce) cans kidney beans
  • 2 (14.5 ounce) cans stewed tomatoes
  • 1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 5 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper


Once you have all the ingredients at hand, follow these instructions step by step to cook Grandma’s Chili Recipe:

  1. In a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat, brown the hamburger meat until cooked well.

  2. Next, add onion and green bell pepper and sauté until tender.

  3. Add Tomato Soup, kidney beans (drained), stewed tomatoes, tomato sauce, and chili seasoning mix well.

  4. If you like your chili on the spicier side, feel free to add more chili powder.

  5. Simmer over low heat for about an hour or two, stirring frequently so that nothing sticks to the bottom of the pot.

  6. If you are using a slow cooker, cook on low for around six hours or on high for around four hours.

  7. Once done to your desired thickness and consistency, serve hot with toppings like shredded cheese or sour cream if you’d like!

No need to be intimidated by this old fashioned chili recipe – it’s actually incredibly easy to make! Simply follow these instructions and you’re sure to end up with a perfect batch every time.

Enjoy your Grandma Chili Recipe – best served on a chilly night!

Substitutions and Variations

 This chili has a kick that'll warm you up from the inside out
This chili has a kick that’ll warm you up from the inside out

When it comes to cooking, there’s often no such thing as a one-size-fits-all recipe – and that’s certainly true for my grandmother’s chili recipe. But don’t fret if you don’t have all the ingredients on hand, or if you want to try something new – I’ve got some substitution ideas and variations that might just knock your socks off.

– If you’re looking to make this recipe vegetarian or vegan, simply swap out the ground beef for your favorite plant-based protein substitute. I recommend using crumbled tofu or chopped seitan for a meaty texture that’ll hold up in the thick, spicy chili sauce.

– For a sweeter spin on things, add a spoonful of brown sugar or maple syrup to balance out the heat of the chili powder. You could also stir in some diced sweet potatoes or butternut squash for a hearty vegetable addition.

– Want to make this chili even spicier? Double up on the chili powder and sprinkle in some red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper for an extra kick. Alternatively, tone down the heat by using mild chili powder and omitting any extra hot spices.

– If you don’t have any kidney beans or chili beans on hand, don’t worry – you can use other canned beans like black beans or pinto beans instead. Just make sure to drain and rinse them well before adding them to the pot.

– Feeling adventurous? Try incorporating some non-traditional ingredients like corn kernels, diced bell peppers (yellow or red would work best), or even a teaspoon of cocoa powder for a rich flavor boost.

Ultimately, the beauty of my grandmother’s chili recipe is that it’s endlessly customizable – so feel free to experiment with your own substitutions and variations until you find the perfect blend of sweet, spicy, and savory flavors. Who knows – you might just stumble upon a new family classic!

Serving and Pairing

When it comes to serving and pairing Grandma’s Chili Recipe, there are many options to choose from. This old-fashioned chili recipe is hearty and flavorful, making it a meal in itself, but there are still some sides that can help to elevate the overall taste.

One classic way of serving this chili is with a slice of cornbread or a piece of toast. The buttery texture and subtle sweetness of cornbread can help balance out the spicy flavor of the chili. Moreover, toasted rustic bread gives the soup an extra crunch and takes you back to the times when food was simple yet delicious.

For a more filling complement, you might consider topping your chili with shredded cheese or sour cream. While adding a bit of dairy can mellow down the heat and infuse creaminess into every spoonful. Alternatively, you can go for some crispy tortilla chips; they add slight saltiness for an enticing flavor profile.

Another beloved side dish for grandma’s chili is a green salad. This pairs nicely by refreshing your palate with bites of vegetables such as lettuce, cucumber, tomatoes, and avocados coated in light oil vinegarette amidst the hearty soup.

If you want to take the meal a notch higher or throw a Tex-Mex feast at home, serve your Grandma’s Chili alongside Spanish Rice (use chili powder instead of paprika) or some baked potatoes topped with a dollop of sour cream.

In short, Grandma’s Chili Recipe stands on its own as a full-course meal but pairing it with your desired garnish can expand its tastescape further ad create comfort in every bite.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

Nothing beats having leftover chili for those lazy days when you don’t want to cook. This is what makes Grandma’s chili recipe so great – it can be stored, reheated, and tasted just as flavorful as the day it was first cooked. In this section, I’ll walk you through how to make-ahead, store, and reheat this old-fashioned chili recipe.

To make ahead, allow the chili to cool down at room temperature after cooking, then place it in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to five days. You can also freeze the chili for up to six months in a freezer-safe container or plastic bag.

When reheating the chili, you can either use a stovetop or microwave. For stovetop reheating, pour the chili into a large pot and simmer on low heat until it’s heated through while stirring occasionally to prevent sticking. Alternatively, you can use the microwave method by placing a portion of the chili in a microwave-safe dish, cover with a microwave lid or plastic wrap, then heat on medium at 30-second intervals until heated through.

If you find yourself with leftover chili and not sure what to do with it other than just reheating it straight up, consider making some base modifications that will transform it into something new like frito pie or chili cheese fries.

Remember: when storing leftover chili and reheating, it’s important to keep in mind any dietary Restrictions of anyone eating your food. Look out for gluten-free alternatives for flour and other seasonings if you are preparing gluten-free dishes. A tip for both storing and reheating is to refrigerate or freeze portions individually so that there is no need to reheat more than needed after freezing them together.

This recipe can be made in bulk quite easily and saves well for later use – ideal if you are cooking for one or two people or looking for easy meal prep ideas.

Tips for Perfect Results

Now that you have all the ingredients needed to make your mouth-watering Grandma’s Chili, it’s time to focus on getting that perfect result. Here are tips that will help you produce the best chili possible:

Tip 1: Balance Your Spices

A brimming bowl of chili is all about balance. Besides salt, chili powder, pepper, and sugar play an essential role in this recipe. Too much salt could be overwhelming and ruin the dish, while too much chili powder can make it too spicy for some to bear. A perfect blend of spices makes for a tasty bowl of goodness.

Tip 2: Layer Your Flavors

It’s important to brown your beef before adding in the other ingredients. This alone adds complexity to the flavor profile, since you get those delicious caramelization flavors from the meat. Allow each component of the recipe enough time to cook properly then taste your chili often during the cooking process, adjusting the seasoning as necessary.

Tip 3: Add Thickening Agents for a Creamy Texture

Chili should be thick enough to stick onto any chip you dunk into it! Tomato sauce, tomato soup and flour tend to thicken freshly made chili quite well. Add these ingredients sparingly though; no one likes a gloopy mess!

Tip 4: Let It Simmer for Long Enough

Don’t be in a rush to complete this recipe. Low heat and longer cooking times lend the best flavor profiles to this old-fashioned chili. Not giving it enough simmering time is another way you can ruin your Grandma’s Chili.

Tip 5: Don’t Be Afraid of Experimenting with Substitutions

If there’s an ingredient in this recipe that doesn’t appeal to you or is missing from your pantry; don’t let that stop you! Try replacing it with something similar or experiment by using new ones altogether. Swapping kidney beans for black or pinto beans, or adding corn or sweet potato can add great texture and depth.

Remember these tips as you create your pot of deliciousness! You’ve got what it takes to make unforgettable meals like grandma did!


Now, let’s move on to the FAQs section. I’m sure there are some burning questions you’re dying to ask about my Grandma’s Chili Recipe – and trust me, I’ve heard them all! Here are some of the most commonly asked questions with my tried and true answers. So, sit back, relax and let’s get started with the FAQs!

What is the secret to great chili?

Spice It Up: Unconventional Ingredients for Your Savory Dishes. When it comes to cooking, traditional ingredients can only take you so far—the real magic lies in experimentation. Here are some unexpected ingredients you should try adding to your savory dishes: cocoa powder, beer, coffee, and cinnamon. Believe it or not, these seemingly sweet ingredients can turn your everyday meals into gastronomic feats-just trust me!

What secret ingredient will deepen the flavor of your chili?

If you want to make your chili more flavorful and balanced, try adding some puréed pumpkin to the recipe. All you need to do is stir it in after sautéing your aromatics like onions and garlic, but before adding any liquid. The pumpkin will add a sweetness and depth that complements the spiciness of the chile peppers, making for a delicious and well-rounded dish. This simple addition can take your chili game to the next level!

What is the difference between Texas chili and regular chili?

When it comes to chili, Texas has its own distinct style that sets it apart from other types of chili. Rather than using beans and tomato products, Texas chili is all about the meat and a rich and flavorful chili paste that is made using dried peppers. This gives Texas chili a unique taste and texture that can’t be found in other types of chili.

Bottom Line

So, are you ready to try out my grandma’s chili recipe? I know I wouldn’t trade it for any fancy dish in the world. This chili recipe is a classic that never goes out of style and will never disappoint you. And hey, did you know that chili has been found to have some health benefits too? It is high in protein and fiber, and can even boost your metabolism.

But let’s be honest here, the most compelling reason to make this chili is because it’s simply delicious. With its mouth-watering blend of flavors and textures, it’s sure to become a favorite in anyone’s household. Whether you are making it for a cozy family dinner at home or for a big game day party, this recipe can feed everyone with ease.

So what are you waiting for? Let’s heat up the kitchen with some of my grandma’s famous chili. Gather all the ingredients listed above, follow my step-by-step instructions, and soon enough you’ll have a mouth-watering pot of homemade chili that will leave everyone licking their bowls clean. Trust me, once you try grandma’s chili recipe, there’s no turning back!

Grandma's Chili

Grandma’s Chili Recipe

The "new" Recipezaar has cut off about half of my directions after step 3 during the switch. sad. sorry to any new readers. Maybe I'll have time to come back and make corrections someday, though I rarely frequent this site now because of how much more difficult it is to navigate. this is a passed down, tried and true chili recipe. i always get a ton of compliments on it. serving ideas: cheese, fritos, cornbread, saltine crackers (we love them all -- depending on our mood!)... note -- this is one of those recipes that comes from my brain and test tastes. 🙂 so a couple of notes: -- i have found that Lawry's chili seasoning gives the best overall taste. and plus, that's just the way grandma made it! -- i use any where from one to two pounds of meat and adjust the ingredients accordingly. -- i often use nearly 1 and 1/2 packets of chili seasoning, especially if the meat portion is on the heavy side. -- i often use some of the stewed tomato juice and chili bean juice to help add flavor.
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Prep Time 30 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Calories 389.2 kcal


  • 1 1/2 lbs ground beef
  • 1 (8 ounce) packet chili seasoning mix
  • 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 onion
  • 1 (15 ounce) can chili beans
  • 1 (15 ounce) can stewed tomatoes, cut into small pieces
  • chili powder
  • salt
  • pepper
  • sugar
  • flour


  • brown hamburger and onion.
  • add salt and pepper, seasoning to taste. add chili seasoning, and a dash of chili powder; stir.
  • transfer to a large pot and add tomato sauce, stewed tomatoes, beans, water (to desired thickness, about 1/2 cup), flour (about a tablespoon), and sugar (about a tablespoon).

Your Own Notes


Serving: 238gCalories: 389.2kcalCarbohydrates: 29.2gProtein: 28.9gFat: 17.6gSaturated Fat: 6.8gCholesterol: 77.1mgSodium: 612.8mgFiber: 5.3gSugar: 5.8g
Keyword < 30 Mins, Easy, Meat
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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