Cowboy Chili…Yee Haw!

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Our evenings are cooler, our mornings are kissed by the dew and harvested pumpkins adorn our homes. As autumn breezes caress their way through crimson, gold and burlap crisp leaves creating nature’s carpeting…our desire for heartier meals intensifies. 

Many October moons ago at an office lunch gathering my buddy Dwayne carried in a Crock Pot® containing his contribution to the potluck. As he lifted the lid to the reservoir a combination of tantalizing aromas caught my attention as well as the presentation. With eager anticipation I asked, “What is this Dwayne?” He informed me that it was called Cowboy Chili and he and his wife, Tammy, made it frequently.  Best of all, it was no fail and had become a fan favorite with their friends and family.  

I could see a spectrum of beans, onion, hamburger and a rich, gravy-like bubbling base that my sniffer sense detected as tangy. Dwayne explained that the base was a mixture of water, mustard, ketchup, vinegar and brown sugar.  Upon hearing his words I was willing to take one for the team by sliding the delectable dish in front of me and with a sizeable serving spoon – consume it all! What was happening here? These were some of my most favorite foods combined, I wasn’t even concerned about being rude, yes, it was all about me!

The Cowboy Chili Recipe

1 lb. of ground beef (or turkey)

1 bottle of real bacon bits

1 medium onion, chopped

1-28 oz. can of baked beans

1-15 1/2 oz. can of dark red kidney beans

1-15 1/2 oz. can of light red kidney beans

1-15 1/2 oz. can of chili hot beans

1-13 ¼ can of baby lima beans

½ c. firmly packed brown sugar

½ c. ketchup

1 T. vinegar, apple cider

1 tsp. mustard

Drain kidney beans and lima beans.  Brown ground beef and onion, drain grease.  Add remaining ingredients.  Mix well. Place in a Crock Pot®, on low, until bubbling good.  Or, pour in to 2 qt. casserole, cover and bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes or until bubbling good.

So, before you head out to wrangle the day, tailgating before the game or a cookout with friends and family put this all together in your Crockpot.  Once the cows come home…put your boots up and settle down with a bowl of Cowboy Chili.


*Special thanks and credit to Tammy and Dwayne Hawk for sharing this recipe*