Bowl of easy beef and bean chili
Beachy Recipes

Super Easy Chili

We love to head to our beach house in the off season when the temperature can be a bit brisk.  Chili is a great make ahead packable meal that is perfect for those times of year and could not be easier.  It makes a satisfying lunch or dinner.

This recipe has long been a family favorite.  The kids often request individual bags of it to take back to college for no brainer meals at the end a long day.

Super Easy Chili

Serves 8
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 2 ½ hours

Assemble Your Tools

  • Large Dutch oven or stew pot
  • Chef knife
  • Cutting board
  • Large spoon
  • Measuring spoons

Copper dutch oven and cooking utensils


1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
2 lbs. lean ground beef (I use 90%)
1 medium onion chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbsp regular chili powder
1 Tbsp hot chili powder
2 Tsp ground cumin
1 Tsp ground black pepper
1 Tsp salt
6 oz can tomato paste
32 oz box beef stock (not broth)
15.5 oz can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
15.5 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed

Easy Beach Chili Ingredients


  1. Prep onion and garlic – set aside.

Chopped onion and garlic on cutting board

2. Heat olive oil in Dutch oven until very hot, add ground beef and brown well, breaking up to form large chunks of beef – about 10 minutes

Browned ground beef in pot

3. Reduce the heat to medium-low — add onion and cook stirring gently until soft and translucent — about 5 minutes.  Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant.

4. Toss in the chili powders, cumin, salt and black pepper.

Spices and ground beef in pot

5. Stir in the tomato paste.

6. Pour in half the beef stock, stir well, add the rest and stir again.

7. Put lid on pot and allow to come to a gentle simmer.  Turn heat down to low and cook for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.

8. Taste for seasoning and add more to suit your taste, especially salt — cook 1 hour, stirring occasionally.

9. Add the beans, stir to mix and cook for 30 minutes longer.

Optional toppings:  sour cream, shredded cheese, chopped green onion, avocado, crushed tortilla chips



  • Take beef out of refrigerator 30 minutes before browning — cold beef will drop the temperature of the pot and make it much more difficult to brown.
  • I sometime use a little bacon fat I have saved in the fridge in addition to the oil to add a bit of a smokey flavor note.
  • Play around with the amount and type of chili powder to make it your own.
  • Add whatever combination of beans is your family’s favorite.  Kidney beans also work well.
  • I find this recipe is best made a day or two ahead to allow the flavors to develop more.

Pairs extremely well with Cape May Brewery’s Tan Limes

Resources for tools and ingredients

William Sonoma and Sur La Table are great resources for all things cooking.

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