Although I was always interested in cooking, I never got a chance to do much of it until I got married. I used to only rely on cookbooks, but over time, I became more confident and started creating my own recipes. This is one I'm especially proud of. - Giovanna Garver, Paonia, Colorado
My husband and I try to have at least one vegetarian meal each week, and this is one of our favorites. The recipe makes a large pot of chili that's chock-full of color and flavor. Once the chopping is done, it's quick to cook.
This tempting chili is big on flavor and really very simple to prepare. Sometimes on a Sunday, I'll get a good start on it—up to where it's time to add the beans. Then the next day, I'll take it out of the fridge and finish it off in just a few minutes. Viola—dinner is quickly served!
You're sure to get a kick out of this spicy entree, which placed third at a chili contest in Murphy, North Carolina.
"I wanted to make good-for-you chili that also used veggies from my garden," C.J. Counts explains. "My husband and I are chefs, but we also like to have fun and use our imaginations when we cook."
No one ever guesses the "secret ingredient" in this recipe that I created. A can of mushroom soup is what makes the chili so thick and creamy. Take this spicy concoction to a fall potluck or church dinner, and watch folks warm up to it!
-Elizabeth Mays, Nunnelly, Tennessee
My father was a cook in the Army and taught me the basics in the kitchen. My childhood baby-sitter inspired my love of cooking, too...in fact, she gave me this recipe. —Julie Brendt, Antelope, California
Luckily, this recipe makes a lot, since everyone is apt to want another bowl. It freezes well and makes excellent leftovers-if there is any left. Not that I'm a retired farm wife, I enjoy traveling and volunteering. —Fannie Wehmas, Saxon, Wisconsin
"This hearty three-bean soup is very easy to fix," remarks Sharon Thompson of Hunter, Kansas. "You can add a can of green chilies if you like it hotter. I increase the amount of tomatoes and beans for large church get-togethers."
This chili, loaded with white beans and cubes of pork, has plenty of bite. But if it’s not spicy enough for you, top it with shredded jalapeno jack cheese and finely diced onions. —Larry Laatsch, Saginaw, Michigan