Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Taco Chili - Gluten-Free

This darn Polar Vortex is brutal!  I mean, I've had more windchill days than snow days this year!  Actually, I've had more snow/windchill days this year than in my past 10 years of teaching!  As I sit here to type this, we're having our 6th windchill/snow day of the school year and it's only the end of January.  We still have to make it through February.  And I live in the Metro Detroit area, so the people North of me have used A LOT more snow/windchill days than us! 

Polar Vortex coldness calls for nice warm comfort food!  With the weather being this cold, we've been trying to use what we have in the house instead of rushing to the store for an ingredient or two.  I hate bundling the kids up and taking them in and out of the car when I don't have to.  So, this chili came from only things I had around the house.  I had actually bought about 2 1/2 lbs. of lean ground beef on sale a couple days before and I needed to use it up.  I cooked all 3 lbs. and cooked it.  I used only about 3/4 lb. for my chili (since I was going to use beans too) and seasoned the rest with my homemade taco seasoning, separated it into 2 freezer bags and froze it for nachos/tacos/taco salads.  Since I already had the taco seasoning out, I decided it would be the only seasoning I would use in my chili.  I mean, why not?  I know it's VERY LOW in sodium and VERY tasty.  The chili turned out PERFECTLY......way better than I thought it would be! 

My husband and kids ate this right up!  Actually, usually everyone complains about having to eat leftover the next day, but not this time.  Gavin (2.5 yo) told me "I need to hab dat chiwi momma."  That's what I like to hear.  He "needed" it.  LOL  It's a huge hit in my house and I know I'll be making it again soon!

Servings: 6-8

1 onion, chopped
1 can kidney beans, drained and rinsed (you can use 1/2 cup raw kidney beans, but you have to soak overnight and boil....we only soaked and they were still crunchy.....and "gassy" LOL)
3/4 lb. lean ground beef or turkey, cooked
1 pkg. low sodium taco seasoning (or use my recipe for taco seasoning in this post, but halve it)
15 oz. tomato sauce
12 oz. tomato paste
2 - 14.5 oz. cans diced tomatoes
3 cups water

In your crock, place the onion and ground beef.

Next, add in the diced tomatoes, tomato sauce and tomato paste.
 Add in the taco seasoning.....
 and the water and beans.  Give it a stir.

Cook on LOW for 6-8 hours (8-10 if using dry beans), or on HIGH for 3-4 hours (4-6 if using dry beans)
Top with a little bit of shredded cheese and maybe even a dollop of non-fat plain greek yogurt for some extra goodness!
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