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Chili for a Crowd Recipe

Chili for a Crowd Recipe

Meet the Cook: The basis for this recipe was handed down to me by my aunt, who said she got it from a "grizzled Montana mountain man". I added some zesty ingredients to come up with the final version. Hot food is something that my husband's family isn't accustomed to. So I adjust the spices for them. In fact, with a few simple alterations to the "heat" index, I can serve this chili to anyone. Chad and I and our 2-year-old son live 12 miles from town in the country. -Lisa Humphreys, Wasilla, Alaska
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 25 min. Cook: 1 hour YIELD:20-24 servings


  • 3 pounds ground beef
  • 2 cans (28 ounces each) diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 4 cans (16 ounces each) kidney beans or 4 cans (15 ounces each) pinto beans or black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 pound smoked kielbasa, sliced and halved
  • 2 large onions, halved and thinly sliced
  • 2 cans (8 ounces each) tomato sauce
  • 2/3 cup hickory-flavored barbecue sauce
  • 1-1/2 cups water
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 5 fresh banana peppers, seeded and sliced
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground mustard
  • 2 teaspoons instant coffee granules
  • 1 teaspoon each dried oregano, thyme and sage
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced


  • 1. In an 8-qt. kettle or Dutch oven, cook beef over medium heat until no longer pink; drain.
  • 2. Stir in the remaining ingredients; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Yield: 20-24 servings (6 quarts).

Nutritional Facts

1 cup: 207 calories, 11g fat (4g saturated fat), 40mg cholesterol, 422mg sodium, 13g carbohydrate (8g sugars, 3g fiber), 15g protein.

Reviews for Chili for a Crowd

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foodiedude User ID: 8889015 250137
Reviewed Jul. 5, 2016

"Great recipe. Tried it when needing to cook for a large group of college students. Varied it up by subbing salami for kielbasa, pre-cooked soy beans for canned kidney beans, a pint of stout beer for water, doubled the coffee, tripled the cayenne pepper and added 1 heaping tbsp chili powder in place of pepper flakes. Turned out sweeter than I expected but it was enjoyed by all.

Only recommendation would be to change serving size. For a group of college kids I'd say this'd feed maybe 10-15 comfortably. Adding loaves of bread on the side, 1.5x this recipe should be enough for 20 people. Still, great recipe, thanks Lisa!"

ASGOOD User ID: 8625901 237674
Reviewed Nov. 19, 2015

"I looked for a chili recipe for a large crowd and found this one. Made it for a group of 32 men. I received very good compliments on this chili, so it is definitely a keeper.

I doubled the recipe for this group and it wasn't quite enough. Guys like "seconds" and though several guys got seconds, more would have had there been more chili. The serving size of 1 cup is too small, in my opinion. It takes 2 cups to have a nice bowlful.
We enjoyed this recipe just as it is and will make it again, but next time will be more careful to make enough. Thanks Lisa for sharing this recipe."

LeanneBosch User ID: 7427912 219792
Reviewed Feb. 5, 2015

"Made this recipe for an open house over a year ago....

We are hosting another one and people are asking if I'll be making that chili again. Definately a keeper and more then enough to go around!"

amberkort User ID: 4801669 19519
Reviewed Jan. 18, 2011

"I made this recipe with a few of my own additions and won first place in a chli contest! It has so many layers of flavor, you won't ever get tired of eating this chili."

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