Chilli con carne

Chilli con carne

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(989 ratings)

Prep: 50 mins - 1 hr, 10 mins


Serves 4

This great chilli has to be one of the best dishes to serve to friends for a casual get-together

Nutrition and extra info

  • Can be frozen

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal387
  • fat17g
  • saturates6g
  • carbs25g
  • sugars1g
  • fibre6g
  • protein36g
  • salt2.32g
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  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1 large onion



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 1 red pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1 heaped tsp hot chilli powder (or 1 level tbsp if you only have mild)
  • 1 tsp paprika



    A spice that's central to Hungarian cuisine, paprika is made by drying a particular type of…

  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 500g lean minced beef
  • 1 beef stock cube
  • 400g can chopped tomatoes
  • ½ tsp dried marjoram
  • 1 tsp sugar



    Honey and syrups made from concentrated fruit juice were the earliest known sweeteners. Today,…

  • 2 tbsp tomato purée
  • 410g can red kidney beans
  • plain boiled long grain rice, to serve
  • soured cream, to serve


  1. Prepare your vegetables. Chop 1 large onion into small dice, about 5mm square. The easiest way to do this is to cut the onion in half from root to tip, peel it and slice each half into thick matchsticks lengthways, not quite cutting all the way to the root end so they are still held together. Slice across the matchsticks into neat dice. Cut 1 red pepper in half lengthways, remove stalk and wash the seeds away, then chop. Peel and finely chop 2 garlic cloves.

  2. Start cooking. Put your pan on the hob over a medium heat. Add the oil and leave it for 1-2 minutes until hot (a little longer for an electric hob). Add the onions and cook, stirring fairly frequently, for about 5 minutes, or until the onions are soft, squidgy and slightly translucent. Tip in the garlic, red pepper, 1 heaped tsp hot chilli powder or 1 level tbsp mild chilli powder, 1 tsp paprika and 1 tsp ground cumin. Give it a good stir, then leave it to cook for another 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

  3. Brown the 500g lean minced beef. Turn the heat up a bit, add the meat to the pan and break it up with your spoon or spatula. The mix should sizzle a bit when you add the mince. Keep stirring and prodding for at least 5 minutes, until all the mince is in uniform, mince-sized lumps and there are no more pink bits. Make sure you keep the heat hot enough for the meat to fry and become brown, rather than just stew.

  4. Making the sauce. Crumble 1 beef stock cube into 300ml hot water. Pour this into the pan with the mince mixture. Open 1 can of chopped tomatoes (400g can) and add these as well. Tip in ½ tsp dried marjoram and 1 tsp sugar, if using (see tip at the bottom), and add a good shake of salt and pepper. Squirt in about 2 tbsp tomato purée and stir the sauce well.

  5. Simmer it gently. Bring the whole thing to the boil, give it a good stir and put a lid on the pan. Turn down the heat until it is gently bubbling and leave it for 20 minutes. You should check on the pan occasionally to stir it and make sure the sauce doesn’t catch on the bottom of the pan or isn’t drying out. If it is, add a couple of tablespoons of water and make sure that the heat really is low enough. After simmering gently, the saucy mince mixture should look thick, moist and juicy.

  6. Bring on the beans. Drain and rinse 1 can of red kidney beans (410g can) in a sieve and stir them into the chilli pot. Bring to the boil again, and gently bubble without the lid for another 10 minutes, adding a little more water if it looks too dry. Taste a bit of the chilli and season. It will probably take a lot more seasoning than you think. Now replace the lid, turn off the heat and leave your chilli to stand for 10 minutes before serving, and relax. Leaving your chilli to stand is really important as it allows the flavours to mingle and the meat.

  7. Serve with soured cream and plain boiled long grain rice.

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Comments (1015)

saxmad's picture

Fantastic recipe - I didn't have the paprika...which may seem a little odd for a Chilli, but the recipe was still fantastic, just a little less colourful ;o)
Will def be making it again - my 2 year old wanted 3rds!

jimmytheonlysaint's picture

Very good......try throwing a cinnamon stick in whilst it is bubbling away!

dylanski's picture

I've always made a pretty good chilli just by winging it before, but thought I'd give this one a go and it is perfect! Just the right amount of heat which comes through on the tongue and a lovely flavour - will definitely stick to this in future

steve2177's picture

Search finished for a great tasting Chilli!...Excellent and easy to make.

juliecw's picture

My husband is the cook in our house, and is used to making chilli. I surprised him one night and made this recipe. He thought it was the best chilli he'd ever tasted. A winner, which has been made again. So easy to make.

tracylove's picture

I have tried loads of chilli recipes and never enjoyed one !! So i will be having a go at this one, even with all the hyp i will make sure i have something on stand by just incase.

helenthi's picture

I've now made this chilli countless times and it still tastes as good as the first. Definitely deserves its 5 star rating! If you haven't tried the recipe yet, you're missing out!

katymatt's picture

So tasty!!! Definatly needs hot chilli powder not mild though. We made ours in the slow cooker which made it extra tasty. Would make it again no question!!!

djw3146's picture

This was my 1st ever attempt at proper cooking and it turned out perfectly! I used the mexican twist of adding the chocolate and served it on a pile of nacho's topped with grated cheese and soured cream. It was so good i'm making it again tonight!! :-)

charliepie's picture

Personally it still doesn't beat Deliah, but as a close second it is nice and easy to make, and freezes well.

saffie's picture

this is such a lovely chilli , loads of flavor without being to hot .
I normally do my own thing,but in future i will be following this recipe !!!!!!!!

frejja's picture

Made this tonight, my first attempt and it was wolfed down by me and my husband. Far nicer than any pre made jar and a joy to make. Very impressed, this will be a regular on the menu.

bfcpaul's picture

Absolutely delicious! We had this last night for dinner and loved it.

Theres still some left, so we're having that with Baked Potato tonight!

unkdysfunk's picture

Cracking recipe, I love it with yellow peppers added.

motors007's picture

Excellent but two ingredients missing in my book Worcester sauce and mango chutney (Mrs Balls).Taste even better the next day!

weenywoo's picture

I made it to the recipe and included the chocolate, Delicious!

loobylea's picture

This looked scrummy and I got my husband, who normally doesn't cook anything like this, to cook it. It was absolutely delicious...can't wait to try it again. We used sugar but tempted to have a go with the chocolate next time....give it a go, you won't be disappointed.

motoxgadge's picture

easy to make perfect chilli

lindada's picture

I agree - the nicest I've tried. Added a red chilli or two (like it hot) and a splodge of tomato ketchup.

zoehill's picture

very easy and very very nice have made lots of time and will make lots more times


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