Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Three-Alarm Spaghetti and Pinto Bean Chili

Oh my goodness...if you don't try this chili, I will truly think you're NUTS. In all sincerity, this is one of the best chili recipes I've tasted in a LONG time. And I'm not pullin your leg. It's spicy, but not so spicy that you should be heading to bed with heart burn. But it's just the right amount of spicy to add some "kick" to your day. And for those of you in the bone-chilling midwest like me right now, this is exactly what you need to WARM UP! I'm not so sure I'd call it a true "chili" as I felt it was a little less "hearty" in that respect. It's kind of more of a soup, in my opinion.

I got this recipe from a weekly email I receive from Betty Crocker called "Dinner Made Easy." I had this whole chili whipped up in under 30 minutes from chopping board for the veggies to a nice steaming bowl of chili topped with sour cream. This is so simple to make and easily adaptable to lessen or enhance the spice as you see fit.

I doubled the recipe so the hubby and I can have leftovers for a few days. I'm looking forward to my lunch hour at work tomorrow, I'm tellin ya...

I also used whole wheat spaghetti as that's all we eat for pasta around here, but I'm sure regular spaghetti would be just as good.

I loved that it had a touch of cinnamon! The flavor added SO much. At first I was a bit freaked out when I saw it on the list of ingredients, but without it, I think you'd definitely notice something missing in the flavor.

Please let me know if you try this! I'd be curious your thoughts on it!


Three-Alarm Spaghetti and Pinto Bean Chili
1     tablespoon vegetable oil
1     large onion, chopped (1 cup)
1     medium green bell pepper, chopped (1 cup)
3     cups water
1/2     cup taco sauce
2     teaspoons chili powder
1/2     teaspoon salt
1/4     teaspoon ground cinnamon
2     cans (10 ounces each) diced tomatoes and green chilies, undrained
4     ounces uncooked spaghetti, broken into thirds (1 1/2 cups)
1     can (15 to 16 ounces) pinto beans, rinsed and drained
Sour cream, if desired
 Jalapeño chilies, if desired
1. Heat oil in 4-quart Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Cook onion and bell pepper in oil 3 to 5 minutes, stirring occasionally until crisp-tender.
2. Stir in remaining ingredients except spaghetti and beans. Heat to boiling; reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer uncovered 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

3. Stir in spaghetti and beans. Heat to boiling; reduce heat to medium. Cook uncovered 8 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until spaghetti is tender. Garnish each serving with sour cream and jalapeño chilies.

**side note: This chili is based off the rather famous "Cincinnati Chili recipe" that is typically served over spaghetti.