October 10, 2016

BIG BATCH Beef & Bean Chili

It seems like we’re always entertaining these days. Which is fine by me! There’s not much I love more than feeding people and making them feel welcome in my home. I’ve mentioned this before but it’s worth saying again… my favorite way to entertain is to put out a big spread of munchies for grazing and make one big pot of something to have on the stove.

I just set out a stack of bowls, a bunch of spoons, maybe rolls or cornbread, a bottle of hot sauce and call ‘er done. I love this method better than having an official “supper time” for several reasons:
  • Number one is I don’t have to miss any of the party action because I’ve already done my cooking. I can wash my hands, pour myself a cold one and unwind with my company.
  • I also like this because people can eat when they want. Sometimes social gatherings can get too stuffy if everyone’s on a schedule. If you’re hungry, go get you a bowl. If not, it’ll still be there when you’re ready.
  • When you cook a one-pot meal like this, you don’t have to make 40-leven side dishes either. Doing it this way says, “Here’s y’all some snacks, supper’s on the stove when you’re ready and if you’re looking for the linen napkins you’re at the wrong house!” It kind of establishes a casual pace for the evening and that’s how I usually like to roll.
  • Eating like this is great when there are lots of kids around too. Everything doesn’t come to a screeching halt when I holler “supper’s ready!” and half the adults have to go make plates for the kids.
  • When everyone’s eating on their own schedule, you don’t have to worry about seating (or place settings, fixing drinks, etc.). It can be hard accommodating 20 people with a spot at the dinner table.
  • This is also great on game day or when you’ve got something going on outside because nobody’s going to miss that big interception or their turn at cornhole because they’re fourteenth in line waiting to fix their plate.
In the past when I’ve made chili for a crowd I’ve just quadrupled my regular chili recipe but when I’m entertaining I like to try to step it up a notch so I thought using Hurst’s 15 Bean Soup mix would add so much variety and contrast to the chili and I was right! The seasoning packet adds a hint of smokiness that is just perfect for chili (kinda reminds you of smoked chipotles). I’ve made this recipe twice since the first time because I loved it so much (freezing the leftovers for quick suppers during the week – double score!)

If you can’t find the 15-bean soup mix in your local grocery store, ask for it! My grocery store now carries all sorts of products they didn’t have before simply because I asked for them. Just ask the cashier who to talk to to request a product and s/he will point you in the right direction. My store has a list at the Customer Service desk where they notate products their customers' request.

BIG BATCH Beef & Bean Chili! This recipe serves 18-20 people and is perfect for game day!

BIG BATCH Beef & Bean Chili! This recipe serves 18-20 people and is perfect for game day!

BIG BATCH Beef & Bean Chili! This recipe serves 18-20 people and is perfect for game day!

BIG BATCH Beef & Bean Chili
1 20-oz. bag Hurst’s 15 Bean Soup dried bean mix
6 cups water
3 pounds ground beef
2 large onions, diced
3 14-oz. cans petite diced tomatoes, undrained
1 16-oz. can tomato sauce
2 packets chili seasoning mix
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon cumin
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons oregano
2 teaspoons chili powder
2 teaspoons black pepper

Combine dried beans (with included seasoning packet) and water in a large pot or Dutch oven. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer two hours.

Cook ground beef and onion in a large skillet until meat is cooked through then add to beans (do not drain – this is the only form of fat we have for this entire huge batch of chili and we need the pan drippings for richness and flavor).

Add remaining ingredients, stir well, cover then continue cooking on medium-low for two hours or until beans are tender. Add more salt or seasonings to taste if necessary.

Makes approximately 18-20 servings.

  • You can make this EVEN easier by using 4 packets of chili seasoning mix (vs. 2) in place of the remaining seasoning and spices.
  • Freeze leftovers in airtight containers up to six months.
  • If you can’t find Hurst’s 15 Bean Soup in your market, please ask your grocer for them. Until then, you can order them online!
  • I haven't tried it myself, but if you want to cook this in a crock pot, cook the beans and water for 6 hours on low or 4 hours on high, add remaining ingredients then continue cooking on high for 2 hours or until beans are tender.
This recipe was featured at the Weekend Potluck and Meal Plan Monday!


The development of this recipe was sponsored by Hurst's Beans. As always, all opinions are my own.
BIG BATCH Beef & Bean Chili! This DELICIOUS easy recipe serves 18-20 people and is perfect for game day!

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  1. Sounds delicious! Hopefully I will be trying it Friday night!

  2. Oh boy ! Another great idea for week dinner ! Thank you !

  3. how about some nutritional information--calories,fats,sugars,carbs,fiber, etc. some of us need to know these numbers for our diet intake-- this sounds so delicious, I want to make it now but I need some more info. Thank you so much

    1. I'm just a writer and a home cook so I don't really have the resources to analyze my recipes that way. Maybe try using an app like My fitness Pal or one of the several websites that can calculate the entire recipe for you....that way you can be sure to use the exact brands you like or account for any modifications you make. Hope that helps!

  4. One of my hubby's favorites is chili. He would just love this dish. Thanks for sharing with us at Weekend Potluck. Have a great week.


Hi there! While I'm not able to respond to every comment, I try hard to answer any questions that haven't been addressed in the post, recipe or in other comments. And though I may not respond to them all, I do read each and every comment and I LOVE to hear from you guys! Thanks, y'all! - Mandy

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