Chili Michigan Style

Everyone has a favorite chili recipe and this is mine.  There have been a number of changes, and I feel improvements,  that have occured over the years and the result is very flavorful.  See also my recipe for Turkey Chili which I adapted from Chef Art Smith; Black Bean Chili and White Bean Chicken Chili.

Chili Michigan Style

  • enough olive oil to saute the onions
  • lots of onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 (4 oz.) cans green chilies, chopped (you could add jalapenos too) cook any fresh peppers with the onions
  • 3 lbs. ground chuck (or use turkey or a turkey/beef mixture)
  • 1 lb. hot sausage (I use Bob Evans Zesty Hot pork sausage)
  • 4 quarts (canned tomatoes – salt added) or 6-7 large cans of San Marzano or Muir Glen tomatoes
  • 1 lb. 12 oz. tomato sauce
  • 8 oz. stewed tomatoes
  • 2 tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/8 cup chili powder (or more)
  • 3/4 tsp. sugar
  • 1/8 tsp. tabasco
  • 1/8 tsp. ground cloves
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/2 tbsp. paprika
  • kidney beans (optional pinto or black beans are good too)

Brown beef and sausage in a large skillet; drain and add to a 12 quart sauce pot.  Saute onions in the same skillet until tender, add garlic and cook another minute.  If you are using any fresh peppers cook them with the onions. Add to beef/sausage mixture. Mix tomatoes and stewed tomatoes in a blender and add to the sauce pot.  With a spaghetti sauce I remove the seeds through a food mill but I keep the seeds in this chili. Combine the rest of the ingredients and simmer for three hours stirring occasionally.

After about an hour I will adjust the seasonings. You will note that I do not add salt as I feel there is enough seasoning with the tomatoes, sausage and other spices.

Serves 8-10

Toppings: sour cream,  sharp cheddar cheese, jalapenos, oyster crackers, green onions, avocado, pumpkin seeds, tortilla chips crumbled, fried onions

Ranch Sour Cream:

  • 1-1/2 cups sour cream
  • 1-1/2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tbsp. chives, chopped
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced
  • kosher salt and black pepper to taste
  • canned fried onions (or make some caramelized onions)

Recipe by 

Very good with pickled jalapenos, sour cream and shredded cheese. Oh, and some good sourdough bread for dipping!



A few new pictures…

DSC_7081 DSC_7082 DSC_7084 DSC_7085 DSC_7086 DSC_7087

How about serving this chili in cornbread cups.

DSC_8080 DSC_8084

I found these crispy onions recently at the grocery and they add a nice, crispy topping to my chili.

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