Delicious Italian Chili Recipe That Will Warm Your Soul

Are you bored of the traditional chili recipes? Do you crave for something with a mix of complex Italian flavors? Then, you’re in the right place! I bring to you an easy and delicious Italian chili recipe that is sure to excite your taste buds.

I know there are countless chili recipes out there, but this one stands out with its unique blend of classic chili ingredients and Italian herbs and spices. With warm Italian sausage and lean ground beef, paired with dark red kidney beans and diced tomatoes, this is truly a hearty and filling meal perfect for any occasion.

This recipe is a fantastic option for those who want to indulge their taste buds while on a tight schedule. It can be cooked within an hour using simple ingredients and basic cooking techniques, making it perfect for busy weeknights or family dinners.

So, what are you waiting for? Let’s jump right into the kitchen and enjoy this mouth-watering Italian chili recipe together!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Italian Chili
Italian Chili

There are countless chili recipes out there, but let me tell you why this Italian Chili recipe is one that you’ll love. First of all, it’s packed with flavor. With a combination of Italian sausage and ground beef, as well as garlic, onion, and bell pepper, this chili is sure to satisfy your taste buds.

Not only is it flavorful, but it’s also versatile. You can customize this recipe to your liking by adjusting the level of spiciness or substituting certain ingredients with your preferred options. It’s a great recipe to experiment with and make it your own.

This Italian-style chili is also incredibly easy to make. You won’t need any fancy equipment or complicated cooking techniques. All you need is a pot and some basic ingredients that you probably already have in your pantry.

And the best part? This recipe makes a large batch, so you can enjoy it for several meals throughout the week or freeze some for later. It’s perfect for meal prepping or for feeding a crowd.

Overall, this Italian Chili recipe is the perfect balance of flavor, versatility, and ease. Don’t just take my word for it, give it a try and see for yourself why this is the chili recipe you’ll keep coming back to.

Ingredient List

“A bowl of comforting warmth on a chilly night”

Here is a list of all the ingredients you’ll need to make this delicious Italian chili recipe:

Meat and Beans:

  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 pound hot Italian sausage
  • 1 (15 oz) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (15 oz) can navy beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 5 garlic cloves, minced

Liquid and Sauces:

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 (28 oz) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 (14.5 oz) can tomato sauce


  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • Salt and black pepper, to taste

Optional Toppings:

  • Shredded cheddar cheese
  • Sour cream

Make sure to follow the instructions carefully and use high-quality ingredients for the best results.

The Recipe How-To

“Italian spices add a flavorful twist to classic chili”

Step 1: Brown the Meat

To start with, [lb ground beef] and [1 lb Italian sausage] are put into a large pot, heated over medium-high heat with [olive oil]. I mix the meat occasionally so that it browns evenly. The Italian sausage adds an extra level of complexity by giving it that Italian flavor.

Step 2: Add the Aromatics

Once the meat is sufficiently browned, it’s time to add the aromatic vegetables. I stir in [chopped onions], [diced bell peppers], and [minced garlic]. Garlic and Onion aroma is going to hit my nostrils as soon as it hits the oil.

Step 3: Cook the Vegetables

Keeping the heat on medium-high, I let my vegetables cook down for five minutes until they start getting tender.

Step 4: Add Tomatoes and Sauce

After that, I pour in [crushed tomatoes] and [tomato sauce]. This takes the chili to another level. Tuttorosso, Hunt’s or homemade marinara sauce each work perfectly fine. After adding them to pot, let it simmer for five minutes.

Step 5: Add Beans and Spices

Next up, I add [red kidney beans], [navy beans]. Make sure you strain them before putting into the pot. Moving on to spices now to kick up this Italian-style Chili recipe a notch are going to add [chili powder], [Italian seasoning], [salt], and freshly grounded black pepper. At this point, it’s starting to smell delicious.

Step 6: Simmer Time!

Tastes great if you let your chili dive low in slow heat keeping lid partially off for around 30-45 minutes giving adequate span for all ingredients to fuse well together.

That’s how to create one of my favorite dishes– authentic Italian-style Chili recipe.

Substitutions and Variations

“The ultimate comfort food mashup”

If you want to try something different or don’t love a specific ingredient in this Italian chili recipe, there are plenty of substitutions and variations you can try.

For instance, if you prefer chicken over beef, you can substitute ground chicken for the ground beef. Feel free to add in some veggies like red bell pepper or celery to make it even more flavorful.

For a vegetarian option, simply cut out the meat and swap it with extra beans. I suggest using black beans or pinto beans, as they would add a nice texture to the dish.

If you want to make it spicier, use hot Italian sausage instead of mild. You can also add some crushed red pepper flakes or chili oil for that extra kick!

In terms of seasoning, you can play around with herbs and spices. Try adding oregano, basil, or bay leaves for an Italian flavor. Or, experiment with cumin or paprika for a Tex-Mex twist.

Instead of serving your chili with pasta or rice, get creative and serve it over nachos or fries! Top with sour cream and cheese for an indulgent treat.

Remember that cooking is all about experimentation and having fun. So don’t be afraid to make this recipe your own by trying out different variations and substitutions!

Serving and Pairing

“Topped with melty cheese for an extra cozy meal”

When it comes to serving and pairing this Italian chili recipe, you have a lot of tasty options. The bold flavors of this chili complement a range of sides and toppings, making it perfect for a hearty meal any time of the day.

Firstly, you could serve Italian chili with steamed rice or your favorite pasta dish. The chili’s savory tomato sauce pairs beautifully with al dente spaghetti or fettuccine. Additionally, mashed potatoes or polenta would make a filling and satisfying base for this hearty stew.

For toppings, you can experiment with shredded cheese, chopped green onions, sour cream or fresh cilantro. These will create a perfect balance that melts beautifully on top of the spicy chili. They add depth to the flavor while providing an array of textures that makes each bite heavenly.

If you’re looking for something cool and refreshing to pair with your steamy bowl of Italian chili, consider serving it with a light green salad with lemon vinaigrette dressing. This salad will contrast perfectly with the spicy warmth of the chili.

Lastly, why not try pairing it with some warm crusty garlic bread? It’s the perfect way to soak up every last drop of velvety tomato soup without leaving any on the plate.

Remember, everyone’s taste is different, so feel free to mix things up and satisfy your cravings. The bottom line? Pair this flavorful Italian chili recipe with whatever side and topping dishes you like best for the ultimate culinary experience!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

“A one-pot wonder for easy weeknight dinners”

Once you’ve made this spectacular Italian chili, you might want to save some for later. Fortunately, it’s simple to store and reheat. Keep in mind that like all stews and chilis, this one gets better with age. So if you can, make it ahead of time and let the flavors meld together.

To store, wait until the chili has fully cooled down before transferring it to an airtight container. This way, any residual heat won’t create unwanted trapped moisture. You can keep it in the fridge for up to four days, or stash it in the freezer for up to three months.

Microwaving is a quick way to reheat your leftovers, but it can also cause your chili’s texture and flavor to suffer. Instead, I recommend heating the chili up on the stove or in a slow-cooker for best results. Simply add a bit of water or broth while reheating to help restore its original consistency.

And there you have it – no need to waste any of this hearty dish! Just think about how delicious that first bite will taste after reheating.

Tips for Perfect Results

“The secret ingredient? A splash of red wine”

Now that you have all of your ingredients ready for this delicious Italian chili recipe, it’s time to talk about some tips to ensure you get perfect results every time.

Firstly, when browning the ground beef and Italian sausage, make sure to use a large pan or pot. This is important because you don’t want the meat to overcrowd and steam instead of brown. Additionally, using a lean ground beef will help prevent excess fat from pooling at the bottom.

Secondly, do not skip the step of sautéing the onions and bell pepper. They add a depth of flavor to your chili that cannot be achieved otherwise. Be careful not to overcook them, as they provide a nice crunch.

Thirdly, if you prefer your chili with a bit more heat, feel free to swap out the mild Italian sausage for hot. You can also add some red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper for extra spice.

Fourthly, use high-quality canned diced tomatoes and tomato sauce as they will lend towards the overall taste of your Italian style chili recipe. I recommend Tuttorosso’s 14.5-ounce cans of crushed tomatoes and Hunt’s 14.5-ounce cans of tomato sauce because they are packed with flavor.

Fifthly, don’t forget to season your chili well. Add more chili powder or salt if you think it needs it, but go easy at first as you can always add more later.

Lastly, allow the chili to simmer gently over medium-low heat for at least 30 minutes before serving. This allows all the flavors to infuse together beautifully.

By following these easy tips, you will be sure to get a flavorful and hearty Italian style chili recipe every time!

Bottom Line

In conclusion, if you’re looking for a hearty and flavorful twist on a classic comfort food, this Italian chili recipe is sure to impress. With a delicious blend of Italian spices and savory ingredients like ground beef and sausage, this recipe is perfect for any occasion, from weeknight dinners to tailgate parties. Whether you prefer a spicier or milder flavor, this versatile recipe can be adjusted to suit any taste. And with easy make-ahead options and simple storage instructions, it’s also a fantastic option for busy weeknights or meal prep ahead of time. So why not give this Italian chili recipe a try? Your taste buds (and your family) will thank you!

Italian Chili

Italian Chili Recipe

I came up with this, trying to duplicate a dish I had at Johnny Carino's. It freezes well.
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Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 30 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Calories 475.7 kcal


  • 2 lbs Italian sausage (I used 1 lb. hot and 1 lb. sweet)
  • 2 (15 ounce) cans navy beans, drained
  • 4 (15 ounce) cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 (15 ounce) can water
  • onion
  • bell pepper
  • minced garlic
  • black pepper
  • italian seasoning


  • Brown sausage in large Dutch oven. Cook until no longer pink.
  • Add onion and bell pepper and cook until vegetables are soft.
  • Add minced garlic, beans, tomatoes, water and seasonings.
  • Simmer for approximately 1 hour on medium-low heat.
  • Ladle into bowls; top with shredded mozzarella cheese and serve immediately.
  • NOTE: As written, this makes a huge amount. I had a lot to put in the freezer.

Your Own Notes


Serving: 353gCalories: 475.7kcalCarbohydrates: 36.8gProtein: 25.7gFat: 25.6gSaturated Fat: 8.8gCholesterol: 51.8mgSodium: 1667.5mgFiber: 11.4gSugar: 7.4g
Keyword < 4 Hours
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