Basic Chili Con Carne With Beef and Beans

Basic chili con carne with beans and beef recipe

The Spruce / Zorica Lakonic

Prep: 25 mins
Cook: 105 mins
Soak, Cook Beans: 9 hrs
Total: 11 hrs 10 mins
Servings: 6 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
455 Calories
14g Fat
43g Carbs
40g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6
Amount per serving
Calories 455
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 14g 19%
Saturated Fat 5g 24%
Cholesterol 84mg 28%
Sodium 750mg 33%
Total Carbohydrate 43g 15%
Dietary Fiber 13g 46%
Protein 40g
Calcium 132mg 10%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This ground beef chili is made with canned or cooked dry beans. The beef mixture is slowly simmered and then the cooked or canned beans are added to the mixture. Finely chopped jalapeno peppers are added for more heat, but they are optional. 

Serve this great tasting beef and bean chili with freshly baked cornbread and a salad.


Click Play to See This Chili con Carne Recipe Come Together


  • 1 1/2 cups dried red beans (or 2 (15-ounce) cans red kidney beans or small red beans, drained)
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 to 1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef (85% to 90% lean)
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can tomatoes
  • 1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 (4.5-ounce) can mild green chile peppers
  • Optional: 2 teaspoons jalapeño pepper, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • Dash cayenne pepper, or to taste
  • Dash ground cloves
  • 1 small bay leaf

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for chili con carne
    The Spruce / Zorica Lakonic
  2. Prepare the beans unless using cans. Rinse dry beans, cover with cold water to a depth of about 3 inches above the beans; let them soak overnight or follow the soaking directions on the package.

    Prepare beans
    The Spruce / Zorica Lakonic 
  3. Drain the beans and transfer them to a large saucepan; cover with fresh water.

    Beans and water
    The Spruce / Zorica Lakonic
  4. Cover the pan and simmer for about 1 hour or until the beans are tender. Drain and place to the side.

    Rinse beans
    The Spruce / Zorica Lakonic
  5. Heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet, then brown the ground beef, onion, and bell pepper together until ground beef is no longer pink.

    Heat vegetable oil
    The Spruce / Zorica Lakonic
  6. Add the tomatoes, tomato sauce, chile and jalapeño peppers, seasonings and bay leaf and stir.

    Add tomatoes
    The Spruce / Zorica Lakonic
  7. Cover and simmer for 1 hour and 30 minutes, adding a little water if needed to thin out. Check and stir frequently.

    Cover and simmer
    The Spruce / Zorica Lakonic
  8. Add the cooked or canned beans and heat through.

    Add canned beans
    The Spruce / Zorica Lakonic
  9. Serve in individual bowls with your choice of toppings and enjoy!

    Serve in individual bowls
    The Spruce / Zorica Lakonic


  • If using canned beans, drain them in a colander and rinse with cool water and continue with the remaining instructions as stated above.

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