kook & wijn

Mexican food feast: Chili con Carne

One of my favourite cuisines is the Mexican. No, that is not classy, not fancy, and not exclusive. Also not the best for my diet and figure. But oh yeah, it’s a fantastic cuisine with delicious, flavourful food. Chili con carne is my favourite! I love to eat a bowl of this comfort food on a cold, grey and rainy day while watching Netflix. In pyjamas. With red wine. Ohhhhh, when is it Mexican night again? Today I’ll share the recipe for this ultimate chili con carne with you!


Serves 6 – 8 people

2 onions, finely chopped
3 cloves of garlic, crushed
2-3 red chili peppers (depending on how spicy they are), finely chopped
5 stalks of celery, in brunoise (cubes of 1,5 x 1,5 cm)
2 big carrots, in brunoise
2 red or green bell peppers, in brunoise
1 small tin of corn (about 200 gram), drained
2 tins or pots of red kidney beans (about 400 gram total), drained
1 kg beef mince
lump of butter
1 tablespoon cumin seeds, roasted and grounded
2-3 teaspoons paprika powder
1-2 teaspoons chili or cayenne powder (depending on how spicy your fresh chili peppers are)
1 tablespoon Italian herbs
1 teaspoon oregano
2 bay leaves
2 deciliter red wine
140 gram concentrated tomato puree
1 bottle or carton of passata di Pomodri
2 tins (à 400 gram) tomatoes
3 teaspoons of sugar
2 tablespoons  balsamico vinegar
15 gram fresh coriander or parsley, whatever you prefer, leaves only
olive oil
black pepper

Serve with whatever you prefer:
sour cream
guacamole or slices of avocado
basmati rice
fresh crusty farm bread
grated Cheddar
taco shells or tortilla crisps
wraps or burritos
a hot chunky chili salsa or sauce
butter lettuce
fresh coriander (or parsley for the coriander-haters)
slices of lime


Place a big cooking pot or casserole over medium heat, with a good dash of olive oil. Sauté the onion for about 3-5 minutes until soft but not brown. Add the carrots, celery, garlic, bell peppers, red chilli peppers and cook together over high heat for 8-12 minutes. You can add already a bit salt and pepper, to taste.

Place a frying pan over high heat with a lump of butter. Fry the mince in a few minutes until brown. Turn around and pull apart with two forks. Get rid of access fat and water by moving the mince to once side of the pan, placing some kitchen paper on the other side until all fat/liquid is gone. Now season the mince well with the cumin, paprika powder, chili/cayenne, Italian herbs, oregano and bay leaves. Pepper and salt to taste. Stir all spices in but be careful that they don’t burn your mince. Deglaze with 200 ml red wine and wait until the alcohol is evaporated. Turn off the heat.

Back to the other pan with your vegetables. Add the concentrated tomato puree and fry over high heat for a few minutes, to make sure the sour taste disappears. Add a bit of sugar, too. Now add the fried mince, together with the red kidney beans, corn, tomatoes, passata to your vegetable stew and stir in well. Have a look at your substance and add some beef stock or water if necessary. The chili con carne must be a nice, thick sauce.

Let the chili con carne simmer on low heat for about 30 minutes and keep an eye on your bay leaves. Stir occasionally and taste. Season if necessary and add some more sugar or balsamic vinegar. During the last 2 minutes you add already 3/4 of your parsley or coriander. The rest you keep aside for serving. Just before serving take out the bay leaves.

Serve with rice, tortillas, tacos, bread, sour cream, guacamole, butter lettuce, coriander, parsley, lime wedges or whatever else you prefer!

Bon Appetit! 

Chili con carne, mexican food, recipe, sour cream, guacamole, nacho, tortilla

*Note: I have not been asked, paid or sponsored to write this recipe about Chili con carne. All images are mine, made with a Canon EOS M3 camera. 

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