Monday, 6 February 2012

5-Alarm Chili in Bread Bowls

A friend of mine sent me the recipe for this 5-Alarm Chili last week. I love chili; however, I’m a bit of a wimp when it comes to spicy chili so I toned down the heat a bit. My version would probably be considered 3.5-Alarm Chili, but who’s counting, right?  It’s hearty and has a wonderful flavor with just the right amount of heat, for my taste buds.  You can always add more heat it you like.

The best part about this chili (besides the taste) is that it’s made in the crockpot. This turned out to be a very good thing, because…



I’ve been without my cooktop for the past week. I got a new cooktop that I’ve been chomping at the bit to use, but I had to wait. We had to order a new regulator. The cooktop is installed and looks beautiful, but it’s not workable – yet. So I decided to use my crockpot.

I was really excited about making this chili. I had most of the ingredients, but needed just a few items so I went to the store and got what I needed.  Then I came home and set out to make the chili.  It was then that I thought, "How will I brown the meat?  My cooktop isn’t working.” Yikes!

Then I remembered I had a pressure cooker. I always claim that I’m not a gadget person, but it sure does help to have the tools you need when you need them in the kitchen. This was one of those times.


5-Alarm Chili (toned down a bit)

Serves: 8 – 10

Adapted from this 5-Alarm Chili recipe


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 large onions (about 2 cups), chopped
  • salt, to taste
  • Cayenne pepper, to taste
  • 2 1/2 lbs. stew meat, cut into cubes
  • 1 large red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 large green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder (or to taste)
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin (or to taste)
  • crushed red pepper, to taste
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1- 28 oz can crushed tomato
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 3 (14-oz) cans beef stock
  • 2 (15-oz.) cans light red kidney beans, rinsed and drained 
  • 2 (15-oz.) cans dark red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (15-oz.) can white kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (15-oz.) can Great Northern beans, rinsed and drained



  1. In a large skillet (or pressure cooker), heat the olive oil. Add the onions and sauté for 3-4 minutes. Season with salt and cayenne pepper.
  2. Add the stew meat, ground beef, chili powder, cumin, crushed red pepper and oregano. Brown the meat for 5-7 minutes.
  3. Stir in the garlic and chopped peppers. Cook for another 2-3 minutes.



  4. While the meat is browning, add the stock, crushed tomato, tomato paste and the beans to the slow cooker. Put the slow cooker on hot and cover.
  5. Once the meat is browned, add it to the slow cooker and stir well.



  6. Put the slow cooker on low and cover. Cook for 4-6 hours, stir occasionally. I cooked it on high for about an hour, then turned the slow cooker down to low and let the chili cook for another 6 hours or so until the stew beef was tender.



    I served this chili for dinner on Super Bowl Sunday in some homemade bread bowls. Look for instructions on making these bread bowls in an upcoming post.



    Thanks for joining me in the bread-baking blog.  I hope you enjoy this chili.


    Here are some additional resources you might enjoy:

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