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I used to make a “standard” chili, but one night when I was in the mood for chili, but didn’t have my regular ingredients, I started to improvise and I liked the improvised chili better than my standard recipe. This is not so much a recipe as encouragement to improvise. I have made a lot of chili variations and rarely have they turned out bad.

Basics I always use (feel free to substitute what you have on hand):
1 pound of ground beef (or chopped chicken pieces, or ground turkey, or meatless ground beef substitute)
1 can of beans (chili beans, red beans, or my now standard Bush’s baked beans)
1 can petite chopped tomatoes
2-4 tablespoons chili powder depending on amount of added ingredients & your taste

Optional ingredients based on what I have on hand:
Corn (amount depends on amount of other added ingredients, what size can you have on hand, your taste)
¼ to ½ cup chopped onions (optional)
¼ to ½ cup chopped bell peppers (any color)
1 small can mushroom pieces
1 chopped firm apple
Ketchup
A-1 steak sauce

Brown onions & peppers in a couple of tablespoons of oil. Add ground beef & cook until no longer pink. Add additional ingredients & heat everything up until it boils. It’s ready to serve.

I have made a lot of variations. My favorite includes fresh onions & peppers and corn. If you add a lot of extra ingredients, you will need to add more chili powder.

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