Iowa City Chili

Recipe by Kurt Michael Friese  |  Photo by Lia Huber

There's a chill in the air here in the Heartland, the kind of windy, rainy days that drill into your bones and create a hankerin' for a rib-sticking bowl of chili. It's also a great way to use up the last of your tomatoes and peppers, or to begin to use your new “puttin' ups” (as my grandma used to call them).

1 tablespoon olive oil
1-1/2 pounds lean ground beef
2 medium onions, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 medium green bell pepper, diced
1 medium red bell pepper, diced
1 cup corn kernels (frozen is fine)
2 hot peppers of your choice, fresh or dried, seeded and minced
4 tablespoons hot smoked Spanish paprika
3 cups cooked pinto beans
1 pint canned diced tomatoes
1 pint tomato puree
18 ounces dark beer (such as bock or stout)
4 tablespoons ground cumin
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

Heat olive oil in a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Sauté ground beef, onion and garlic with a pinch of salt and pepper for 10-12 minutes, until browned, breaking up meat as you stir. Add bell peppers, corn, and hot peppers. Continue to cook over medium heat until peppers are tender, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add the remaining ingredients and gently bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 2-3 hours, then turn off heat and allow to cool before refrigerating. Reheat when ready to eat. Serve with grated cheese, chopped onions, corn bread, tortilla chips, or whatever accompaniments turn you on.

Serves 8

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Hey there ... I'm Lia Huber

Hey there ... I'm Lia Huber

My mission is to inspire and equip you to live a richer life through real food by becoming a more competent, confident home cook.


I’m the author of Nourished: A Memoir of Food, Faith, and Enduring Love, founder and CEO of Nourish Evolution, and the creator of Cook the Seasons, Home Cooking School, and the Real Food Reset, and I empower intentional women to cook in a way that brings them (and their families) joy, health, and ease.

Making the shift from processed food to real food doesn’t happen overnight. It’s an evolution that occurs over time, with effort, intention, and belief. And it will change the course of your life. Are you ready to take the first step? I’m so glad you’re here … and I’m honored to be with you on the journey to becoming nourished!

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