Award Winning Green Chair Chili

I have never made chili before this fall which is wild considering my love affair with my crock-pot. I decided earlier this fall that I really wanted to learn because the non-profit I have had the opportunity to intern with this fall will have a chili cook-off at the Appalachian Mountain Brewery in Boone, N.C to raise funds to alleviate hunger in the High Country.


I talked to my friend Brooke about this and she recommended I try her dads recipe to learn how to make my own. Her dad’s recipe has been a family favorite after it won the chili contest at a family camp she attended as a child.

Unfortunately I was not able to give this recipe the justice it deserved because I lent a friend my large stockpot and knew I was not going to be able to get it back in time to prepare for the Hunger and Health Coalition Chili Cook-Off so I used a couple of pans and my crock-pot instead.
Photography: Sarah Kasper

Photography: Sarah Kasper

First I browned the meat in a large pan. The recipe called for between 2 and 3 pounds of ground beef so I did 2.5 pounds and used a medium to hot taco seasoning packet I had on hand instead of Carroll Shelby’s Original Texas Chili Kit or package of 3 chili flavors combines which was recommended. I sauteed the meat to blend the spices every 3 minutes or so.
Photography: Amanda Jacobson

Photography: Amanda Jacobson

After I finished browning the meat I drained the fat and dumped the meat into my 5 quart crock-pot. Next I placed the following vegetables cut into bite size pieces in the pan until the onions were translucent:
Photography: Amanda Jacobson

Photography: Amanda Jacobson

  • 1 large yellow onion
  • 1 bunch of cilantro
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 tbsp of garlic
  • 1 jalapeno minced with seeds
After the onions were translucent I added them to the crock-pot as well. At this point I realized that I did not do a great job of “cutting once and measuring twice”. In other-words I should have halved the recipe considering the size of my crock-pot because mine was filling up quick!
Photography: Sarah Kasper

Photography: Sarah Kasper

But the chili was not a lost cause, cooking is all about improvising and so I made a few changes. I decided to take out one can of water, beans and diced tomatoes to make it all fit and it worked out great! I then turned up my crock-pot to high and added in:
  • 2 14 oz. cans of pinto beans
  • 1 14 oz. can of kidney beans
  • 1 14 oz. can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 14 oz can of water
  • 1 8 oz. can of tomato sauce
  • 1 tbsp of salt (I used kosher)
  • 1.5 tbsp of corn starch
  • 1 tsp of black pepper
  • 2 tbsp of olive oil
Photography: Sarah Kasper

Photography: Sarah Kasper

I left all the ingredients in the crock-pot for an hour until it simmered and dove on it!

Photography: Amanda Jacobson

Photography: Sarah Kasper

Thank you James Walsh for your awesome chili recipe! This recipe was so easy and filling, I can’t wait to compete December 6, 2014! Wish me luck!

Photography: Brooke Walsh

Photography: Brooke Walsh


11 thoughts on “Award Winning Green Chair Chili

  1. YESS! Green Chair Chili strikes again! It looks so delicious! Great job explaining the recipe and having steps captured through photos. Good luck at the chili cook off and if you need any helpers let me know!

  2. Alex Barbry says:

    Great recipe for winter!

    I will be using this during our next snow day. I like that this is a “Set it & Forget it” meal, perfect for college students on the run or busy parents. Also, I enjoyed your comments on improvisation in the kitchen…it made me feel at ease about trying to follow this recipe because the instructions had “wiggle room”. Your post was very easy to read and the pictures provided a visual example to supplement the text.

  3. Dave Dykes says:

    I think the best thing about recipes like this are the longer you keep the ingredients in the pot together, the more flavorful they get! I like to do gumbo in the crock pot. I can leave a big pot of it in the fridge and eat off of it all week. It’s pretty similar to this recipe. As they say in the deep south, “It taste so good, Imma jump up and slap my momma.”

  4. Taylor Matthews says:

    There’s nothing like a good bowl of chili on a cold winter’s day! I’ve looked for a chili recipe that I could easily make and/or leave cooking while I go to class and I might just have to give this a go!

  5. The chili looks so good in all of your pictures. I also am an avid fan of crock pots because it makes dinner so much easier when you can just mix it all together and forget about it. I definitely will have to try this recipe when it gets cold outside!

  6. Kyle Groetzinger says:

    Looks delicious and I can’t wait to try making it…and eating it. I asked for my family for a Crock-Pot for Christmas because I feel like I miss out on a lot of recipes that require slow cooking. Plus the ability to just open it and serve around dinner time can’t be beat.

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