My husband grew up in Cincinnati, where chili is served over spaghetti, and I grew up in the South. This family-pleaser is a mingling of both worlds…and a great way to make a meal go further. —Stephanie Rabbitt-Schappacher, West Chester, Ohio
This hearty chili is filling, nourishing and tastes like it simmered all day long. Leftover chili freezes well for a later time, so why not make a double recipe? To freeze: Cool remaining chili and transfer to freezer containers. Cover and freeze for up to 3 months. To use frozen chili: Thaw in the refrigerator. Place in a saucepan and heat through. —Wanda Lee, Hemet, California
Store-bought rotisserie chicken makes this spicy chili easy, but you could also cook your own. We like it with sour cream, green onions, cheese or salsa on top. —Emmajean Anderson, Mendota Heights, Minnesota
This satisfying medley is full of tomato flavor and also provides a good dose of fiber. To keep it light, top with reduced-fat cheese, cilantro and green onions. Kim Seeger of Brooklyn Park, Minnesota shares the recipe.
"Having the seasonings mixed up in advance makes stirring up a batch of chili a breeze," suggests Mary Henderson of Opelika, Alabama. "It's a bold but pleasant blend. I like the round steak and ground beef combination."
Four kinds of beans and plenty of seasonings make this chunky chili a crowd-pleaser, particularly on autumn days. "Serve bowls sprinkled with your favorite shredded cheese," suggests Judith Whitford of East Aurora, New York.
Hominy and garbanzo beans are interesting additions to this zippy chili recipe that uses canned goods from the cupboard. I often serve it with corn bread or flour tortillas for a speedy meal. At 72 cents a serving, it's economical, too. —Karen Hunt, Bellvue, Colorado
“This filling, hearty recipe comes from my grandmother,” writes Jenny Greear from Huntington, West Virginia. “It’s full of flavor, freezes beautifully and makes a complete, last-minute meal. I top it grated cheddar cheese and chopped black olives and serve tortilla chips on the side.”
JENNY’S TIP: “If I’m feeding a crowd, I increase the pinto beans to four cans to make the meat go farther.”
Picante sauce, green onions and a little seasoning go a long way when it combined with Nancy's beef and bean mixture. Warm up a winter night with this tangy change-of-pace chili. Your family will enjoy the flavor, and you'll appreciate the time you saved.
"When our daughters wouldn't eat the spicy chili beans I prepared, I came up with this milder, slightly sweet version," notes Keri Scofield Lawson of Fullerton, California. "They love eating the hearty chili as a dip with tortilla chips. I never have leftovers."