The BEST thing about cooking for yourself is that you can have things YOUR way.
That may sound obvious, but it’s not obvious to everyone. The other day, I was craving a really spicy chili. And, since it was just me in the house for a few days, I didn’t want to make a whole big batch. Normally that would mean “cheating” and starting with a perfectly acceptable brand of canned chili and going from there. Only wrinkle: I’m currently doing keto and even the beanless chilis have way more carbs than is on my plan.
So, what’s a hungry, spice-craving chef to do? Make my own. I happened to have 1/2 a pound of ground beef in the freezer, left over from the last burger escapade and a can of fire-roasted tomatoes. And, half red onion too add some more flavor. Garlic? Why not. It’s MY chili, after all. I added two kinds of chili powders — a regular blend for a base and ancho for some extra depth. I really wanted to throw in some canned chipotles in adobo, and I normally have some leftover in the freezer, but in this case, no. Must have used it up. So, let’s grab that handy bottle of Tabasco Chipotle Hot Sauce and add 2 Tbs for heat…and a little more chili flavor. The good news is, it’s YOUR chili so take my ingredients and amounts as a serving suggestion and add or subtract as you will.
After simmering the mixture for about 45 minutes, and adding a little extra water when things got a little dry, I had a nice meaty, full-fat keto-approved chili. To amp things up, I added shredded pepper jack cheese (girl loves her spice, what can I say?), some diced avocado, cream cheese mixed with a little lime juice for that “crema” effect (I didn’t have full-fat sour cream at home so had to make do), and a good fistful of cilantro.
My chili made two servings, and I can tell you it was spicy, satisfying and oh, so good. I didn’t feel “deprived” at all or like I was compromising in the taste department. I could have upped the spice level if I wanted, but it wasn’t necessary. My impromptu chili scratched all my itches and I finished my meal a very happy camper indeed.
And, if it’s too hot, you can always cool it off with a dessert of Key Lime Cheesecake Fat Bombs. I mean…you gotta have dessert right?
Spicy Keto Chili
- 1/2 lb ground beef 80/20 is ideal
- 1/2 large onion, diced
- 1/2 4oz can diced jalapenos *or substitute 1/4 cup fresh, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 Tbsp chili powder
- 1 Tbsp ancho chili powder
- 2 Tbsp chipotle pepper sauce such as Tabasco brand
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 14.5 oz can fire-roasted diced tomatoes
- 1/2 cup water
- cilantro, cheese, sour cream for garnish
- In a medium-sized heavy-bottomed saucepan, brown meat.
- When meat is browned, add onions, garlic and jalapenos. Cook until onion is translucent, but not browned.
- Add chili powders and chipotle sauce to pot. Stir to allow spices to "bloom." Add diced tomatoes and water. Bring to a boil and then turn heat down to a simmer.
- Continue to cook on simmer until most of the liquid is evaporated. Add a bit of water during cooking time if it seems liquid is cooking off too quickly.
- When chili has reached desired consistency, adjust salt and pepper seasonings to taste. Serve with garnishes, such as sour cream, cilantro, extra peppers, cheese, etc.