Chilli Con Carne

This chilli con carne is from my 80/20 cookbook.  It’s a quick, easy one pot meal that’s delicious to eat and really versatile in so many  recipes such as pies, sloppy Joes or lasagne. In this recipe I’ve used lean grass fed beef that I minced myself in the Vitamix.  I often fold through some of my home made XO chilli sauce right at the end and use it in place of chopped chilli.   The avocado and lime cools and refreshes the palate as you eat it – feel free to double the amount of avo per serving. What I love about this dish is that it also keeps in the fridge for about 3 days so you can take it to work for lunch the next day. It  freezes well too.

What’s good about it:
Lean beef and beans are a great source of protein. Whenever the body is growing, repairing or replacing tissue, protein is involved. Veggies such as carrot, capsicum and tomato add antioxidants to help nourish and boost your immune system. Avocado contains the antioxidant vitamin E and it’s also a good mono-unsaturated fat that’s acts as an anti-inflammatory which is perfect after a good training session in the gym.  A touch of chilli from my XO can help spike your metabolic rate and stimulate digestion.

Serves 4

1 onion, finely diced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 large grated carrot
2 sticks sliced celery
250 g lean mince (beef, chicken, game meat are all great) See notes for vego version
1 red capsicum, chopped
2 tablespoons tomato paste
400 g tomato puree
400 g cooked red kidney or adzuki beans, drained
125 g cherry tomato, halved
100 g baby spinach leaves
1 avocado, chopped
1 bunch coriander, chopped
1 lime
Chopped red chilli to taste or a little of my XO Chilli sauce which is amazing in this recipe.

Sauté the mirepoix (fine dice) of onion carrot and celery for 3 minutes until softened.
Add the spices and mince and cook through for 5 minutes until the mince is browned.
Add the capsicum, tomato paste, tomato puree and beans.
Pour over 2 cups of water.
Simmer over a low – medium heat for 30 minutes until thick.
Season with ground pepper and a little salt add cherry tomato.
Fold in spinach and coriander just before serving.
Spoon into bowls,  top with chilli to taste, avocado and a squeeze of lime.
Enjoy by itself or with a side of steamed green vegetables, brown rice or quinoa.

Serving suggestions:
Make Sloppy Joes by stuffing con carne into warm whole grain baguettes or into lettuce cups if you’re off the carbs.
Top with spelt and olive oil shortcrust or smashed cauliflower or sweet potato for a delicious pie.
Layer into a home made lasagne topped with whipped ricotta or white beans.

Vegetarians can use extra beans and lentils in place of the meat. Chopped Tempeh is also a great addition in place of the beef.
Serve alone or over cooked quinoa or brown rice.

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50 Responses to “Chilli Con Carne”
  1. Antia says:

    Yumo! how people does this serve? x

  2. Sara says:

    Hi Teresa
    Love your recipes!! Can you use tinned beans??

  3. Kahlia says:

    Love ya work T x

  4. Jess says:

    Yum this looks so filling and great in this cooler weather, thank you!!!

  5. Jay says:

    Oh this makes me hungry just looking at it! YUM!!

  6. Sarah says:

    Hi Teresa,

    Is this a freezer-friendly recipe?

  7. shauna says:

    teresa, do you have any great brands of tomato paste and puree that you use, i find them all really high in salt so tend to avoid them, but the pasta sauce i make tends to be a bit bland because of this! Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated

    loving the recipes, the choc chip cookie is still my all-time fave!!!

    • My first choice is to always use fresh tomato when lovely and ripe then blend up in the vitamix. Add 2 – 3 tablespoons no added salt tomato paste to that. my second choice is to us a few tins no added salt crushed peeled tomatoes or passata that has no added salt or preservatives. Yes all the ready made sauces are so high in sodium that make them unpalatable. Hope this helps. Tx

  8. Bec says:

    This looks delicious Teresa. I will have to leave out the beans and onion due to fructose intolerance, do you have any suggestions as to what I can replace them with or do you think it will be ok with out these two ingredients.

  9. James says:

    Saw this and have just finished making it for dinner. Can wait to sit down tonight and have a bowl of it. Thanks Teresa for making simple meals for us stay at home dads to make. The boys will love it I already do tastes great.

  10. Meg says:

    I made this last night and it is the most AMAZING meal ever!!! Just a quick question though, I cooked way to many kidney beans and lentils…can you freeze legumes? I don’t want to use them just yet but know that in the future I will want to and it would be so much easier to just grab them from the freezer rather than soak/cook again. Thanks!

  11. Michelle says:

    I was just about to ask the freezer bag question. I am going to make this tonight and the chilli con carne yummm

  12. Linda says:

    I made this using turkey mince. I also put a grated zucchini and some shredded kale for extra greens & 4 bean mix instead of kidney beans….yummo!!

  13. Debra says:

    Made this the other night, we all loved it. Best chilli ever!
    The addition of lime juice makes it taste so fresh, yummo!

  14. Lisbeth says:

    I really had no idea how this would turn out and followed the recipe faithfully. All I can say is Wow! Amazing flavours. I like how you add the chilli as a garnish so can be served without the heat.

  15. Soni says:

    Hi Teresa

    I’m allergic to all citrus fruit. This recipe has lime in it. Is there something that I could use to substitute for the lime? Also, I’ve noticed that other recipes have lemon or orange….do you have any suggestions for these as well?


    Soni :-)

    • just leave it out Soni….no problem…other flavours for baking are cinnamon, vanilla bean that work well…

      • Soni says:

        Thanks heaps for the reply :-) Wow! That is AMAZING you mentioned those two spices because they are the two that I only just bought!!! Vanilla pods and Cinnamomum verum sticks!!! Milled the cinnamon in a coffee grinder and it is wonderful on breakfast fruit!!! The vanilla pods I’ve dried in a low oven and have ground in a coffee grinder. Now I need to try and source some glycerin to make vanilla paste. Apparently you add 1 pod to one tablespoon glycerin? It was the only alcohol free recipe I could find on the internet. I have no idea. This is the first time we’ve tried this. Mum had previously tried grinding the pod in a mortar and pestle to make the “vanilla paste” but that did not work.

  16. Hayley says:

    I made this last night for dinner, absolutely delicious! So happy that there are leftovers for lunch :)

  17. kelly says:

    This is amazing, very yummy version of one of my favourites!

  18. Saoirse says:

    Hi Theresa,

    I made your Chilli Con Carne last night and it was absolutely delicious :) I even surprised myself! So happy i found your website and it is very kind of you to share so much for free! Loving your work.. Keep it up! it’s possible to have tasty healthy food at home for all to enjoy! x

  19. Marie-Claire says:

    I made this two days ago with a sweet potato and olive oil pie topping, adding beetroot and using the beetroot leaves in place of the spinach as I had them already in the fridge – absolutely delicious, quick & easy. It’s also great to freeze for instant healthy ready meals when I come home late from work. Thanks for sharing.

  20. Lana says:

    WOW! That tastes really good, and the serves are huge… we divided it between us 2, and put two serves in the freezer, and neither of us could get through our serve… and that was without extra rice or vegetables. So realsitically for us, its dropped the calorie count down even further. Great meal!

  21. Jessica says:

    I made this last night.
    I added extra chilli flakes to the xo sauce
    Doubled the recipe, was worth the effort!
    Delicious! Thanks :)

  22. Jo says:

    Made this last night completely from leftovers from our taco night earlier in the week and whatever was in our fridge. Tastes fantastic!

  23. Chanelle says:

    Hello can I use canellini beans instead? Having a pantry clean out

  24. Lorraine says:

    I made this last night and it was the best Chilli Con Carne I have ever had. So delicious and full of flavour. I used tinned kidney beans and left out the coriander as my son doesn’t like coriander. The whole family loved it.

    This is the 2nd recipe I have used from your site and both have been absolutely delicious. This has been bookmarked in my favourites!

  25. Shell says:

    I made this last night and it was absolutely delicious! Will definitely be adding this as a family favorite. Thank you!!!

  26. Olivia FERREIRA says:

    My 4 year old and I loved it! I love all the recipes on here =)

  27. Christina says:

    Been wanting to make this for ages – really yummy. Loved the lime. Tasted so fresh and nutritious and my fussy boyfriend liked it too. Winner!

  28. Alison says:

    This is simply amazing! So fresh, tasty and filling!!!

  29. Jo says:

    I made this tonight for dinner and it was SENSATIONAL. I’m so glad I made a double batch so I had some to freeze. I found your website this morning, did my grocery shopping this afternoon (according to your recipes) and cannot wait to try out these amazing recipes!

  30. Dina says:

    This is an absoulte HIT!!! My family loved it!

    I prefer it without the fresh tomatoes added at the end when serving but this is delicious!

    The lime is really refreshing and i have made this twice now

    Thanks for the great recipes!

  31. Joanne says:

    This is the best recipe. I make it all the time. Sometimes I make and freeze so I have something yummy on hand. Love adding the XO Chilli sauce to it.

  32. Caitlin says:

    This was amazing!! and my boyfriend the “maccas lover” said it was one of the best meals he has had!
    Thanks for great recipe :D

  33. Selena says:

    Love, love, love this recipe. Served it to my friends who are real foodies and they found it (as I did) very flavoursome. Cooked it the day before and added a teaspoon of sweet paprika also. Thanks for the great recipes…

  34. Leanne says:

    I have to say this Chilli Con Carne recipe is delicious. Followed the recipe exactly expect didn’t realize until it was done that we didn’t have any chilli to sprinkle on after. My daughter and I thought it perfect, the guys thought it could have been a bit spicier but delicious as well. Next time I’ll remember the chilli for them. Thanks Teresa :)

  35. Tamara Phoebus says:

    Simple, fresh and delicious, as vegetarian, with mince or seafood (mussels, parawns, tuna), and brown rice.
    Thanks Teresa.

  36. Rachel says:

    Haha… told my husband I was cooking chilli con carne for dinner.
    He decided he wanted pizza instead.
    (I’m gluten and dairy free for a few months after bowel re-section… think he’s feeling a little deprived)

    So I made pizza for the family and this recipe for myself planning on freezing for lunches later in the week.
    Well… no chilli left and more than a few slices of pizza…

    EVERYONE thought it was delicious. :)

  37. Delicious says:

    absolutley delicious! even my fussy 16 year old said “this is really nice” at the dinner table, even better heated up for lunch the next day :)

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