Chocolate chili con carne

Don’t forget to head on over to the POM website and vote for my Red Roast Pork with POMegranate glaze. Click here (edited to add, link is no longer active). Thanks so much in advance!

Inspired by Miriam’s post (check out her blog, it’s beautiful!) and a lovely package of extra-lean ground beef from Rowe Farms I picked up the other day, I decided to make a big old pot of chili. Knowing how busy the next couple of weeks will be with end of year celebrations and packing to go away, I am conscious that I need to make sure I have healthy food on hand so I don’t succumb to the Seasonal Eating Fairy. This sounded perfect. Here’s Miriam’s recipe with a couple of changes (in italics). I made mine in the slow cooker, after I had browned the meat and sautéed the veggies.

Chili con carne and chocolate

• 750g minced meat
• 250g boiled Pinto beans, with the resulting stock (I used canned fava and red kidney beans)
• 1 red pepper (I used purple carrots because I had them on hand)
• 2 medium onions
• 4 cloves garlic
• 800 g canned pureed tomatoes (I used diced tomatoes)
• 1 tbsp ketchup (I used tomato purée)
• 4 dried chilis (I used fresh chilies)
• 2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa (I added 3tbsp, as per Miriam’s modification)
• 2 tsp ground cumin
• 1 tsp dried oregano
• 1/2 tsp ground cloves (this amount is a bit excessive for me, taking into account that the allspice that’s also added has a similar taste)
• 1/8 tsp nutmeg
• 1/2 tsp allspice (I used powdered allspice)
• 120 ml bean stock (I used beef stock)
• Olive oil
• Salt
I also added a glass of red wine, a good addition for any dish… well, almost (So did I Miriam!).





Aren’t these purple carrots intriguing? Clearly I thought so…


The insides.


The peels.


The peeled carrots.


Sliced down the middle.

Ok, ok, enough carrot inspection…






Miriam’s method with my modifications in italics.

Start by peeling the garlic and then smash it. Dice the onions and carrots Pour some olive oil in a pan or even in a large casserole and fry the vegetables until wilted. I add the garlic nearly at the end so that it doesn’t burn. Take the vegetables out of the pan and leave aside. Use the flavored oil to fry the meat on high heat. Stir to coat all the meat in oil and brown it. When done, add meat and vegetables to the slow cooker and add the rest of the ingredients: beans, tomatoes, ketchup and all the spices, along with the beef stock. Add the wine and tomato paste.


Cook on high (my slow cooker does not get that hot) for 6 hours.



It is still a little soupy at this stage but you can always add some more tomato paste or reheat in a small saucepan and reduce some of the liquid.

Perfect timing since it’s just started snowing in Toronto (it IS December after all!!!) so it’s just the weather to enjoy a bowl of chocolately chili con carne.

26 thoughts on “Chocolate chili con carne”

  1. Wow! This looks like a wonderful and intriguing chili. I like the cocoa and spices that are in this recipe.

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  2. This looks delicious… and interesting! I love cocoa in savory dishes, I wonder how a full on 'Mole' Chili would taste?Now I think you have inspired me!

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  3. I had to rush over and check out those carrots!I would LOVE this for lunch today, it is really cold in LA, it was 36° overnight!LL

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  4. Wow, I liked all your tweaking! It's so funny to see that none of us can stick to the recipe… XD. Thanks for using my post as inspiration.

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  5. This looks great! I love the purple carrots! I have never seen suck a thing.By the way, thank you so much for taking the time to vote for me! 🙂

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  6. I must plant those carrots next year! How cool! Mardi this chili looks great, and Miriam's blog does too. I typically add chocolate or coffee to my chili. Glad to see I'm not alone.Laura

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  7. mmmm….slow cooking + chocolate= happiness. This looks great, Mardi! Thanks for sharing. It's cold here, too so this may just be part of the plan this weekend. Hope you're good!

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  8. Chocolate chili…It's so creative! I'm very curious about the purple carrots. Do you know if it's a special carrot kind? Were they crossed with beet? 😉

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  9. Conor – hahaha! Carrot fiend indeed. Never! ;-)Fresh Local – it's SO delicious!Evelyne – the carrots are VERY cool!Natalie – Mmmmm – mole chili! Do try it!Lori Lynn – Well they are not as spectacular as your carrots but this was a great dish anyway!Miriam – thank YOU!5 Star – thanks – its the first chili I have made in a while that Neil didn't need to add spice to!Miranda, Rochelle – I am a sucker for pretty veggies!Rebecca, Chow and Chatter, Velva, Travel Eat Love – this recipe sure is unique and definitely a keeper!Chez us – we love that wine for everyday too. There's always a bottle or 5 hanging around!Cooking Photographer – I WISH I could grow carrots like that… Think the squirrels might like them too much!Jen – it does give a really deep flavour, you're right.Megan – You would love this, I think! I even think it would be good in a veggie version.French Cooking – I don't know what kind of carrots they are – they were just called "purple carrots" which is not that helpful!!

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  10. Mardi — no reason we cannot try growing those. Oh, that's right – you don't participate in the garden. I guess that will have to be Mr. Neil. Master Gardener posts… ;-)This is the best chili Mardi's made. Chili in our house is normally "my" thing. (Gawd, how gender-obvious…)Two observations:1) For some reason, it was REALLY watery. Upon reheating, needed to be drained, twice. Very odd. Never had that with any of our other chilis.2) Some nice chunks of beef, real steak, would add to the texture.But from a flavour perspective, it's funny as Mardi sent it off for my lunch and sent an email saying "sorry, won't be spicy enough for you". Well granted I DO like hot things…but this had a nice smoky spiciness to it. I didn't add a thing!

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