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Nutrition and Fitness



Prep time: 90 minutes


  • 1 can red kidney beans (drain and rinse beans well to remove salt)
  • 1 can black beans (drain and rinse beans well to remove salt)
  • 2 cans crushed tomatoes (use no salt added for lower sodium)
  • 1 small can of tomato paste (use no salt added for lower sodium)
  • 2 cloves garlic, diced
  • 1 medium-sized onion, chopped
  • 1 medium green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil or vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp. thyme
  • 1/2 lb. ground beef (optional)


  1. Heat oil over medium-high heat in a large pan.
  2. Add garlic and onion and cook until the onion is translucent (more clear than white).
  3. Add peppers and sauté for a few minutes. Add crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, and spices.
  4. When mixture is bubbling, reduce heat to simmer and add beans. Cover and simmer for at least 60 minutes, stirring occasionally. The longer it simmers, the better it tastes.

Serves: 4 to 5

Serving size: 1 1/2 c.

Nutritional analysis (per serving):

325 calories

16 g protein

7 g fat

56 g carbohydrate

11 g fiber

0 mg cholesterol

1255 mg sodium

186 mg calcium

4.5 mg iron

Note: Nutritional analysis may vary depending on ingredient brands used.


If you want to make your chili with meat, begin by browning ground beef in a large pot. Drain the fat into a paper cup. Set the meat aside, and complete Steps 1 through 3. Add the meat during Step 4, as you add the beans.

Try substituting ground turkey for ground beef - it tastes very similar and has less fat.

After you've made the recipe once, experiment with different kinds of pepper - jalapeno is a favorite.

Experiment with the amounts of spices. The amounts listed here are recommendations - you can make your chili more or less spicy.

Be sure to freeze any leftover chili - some say it actually tastes even better after it's been frozen!

Updated and reviewed by: Steven Dowshen, MD


Note: All information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses and treatment, consult your doctor.

© 1995–2014 The Nemours Foundation/KidsHealth. All rights reserved.

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