Recipe: Chili Beans


Purty no, tasty yes: chili beans

Not trying to be Snow’s, just be in the ballpark. These chili beans are very easy and mighty good with most any grilled or barbecued meat. Makes a whole mess of beans, enough to serve 16-20. If you like, divide in half and freeze one portion for later.

1 lb dried pinto beans
¼ c or more bacon drippings, bacon ends, bits of last week’s brisket etc.
2 T mild chili powder (I used Tone brand*)
1 ½ t Kosher salt


Is this your chili powder, Kerry?

Method: Dump beans in a very large pot, wash, check for impurities. (In the old days they used to tell you to look for rocks but I don’t think I’ve ever seen one in a bag of supermarket beans.) Drain, add more water to cover beans by 1 inch. Heat to boiling, covered, then turn off. Allow to sit for 1 hour. Turn on the heat, low, and add bacon fat, chili powder and salt. Cook over very low heat 4-5 hours or until tender all the way through but not quite falling apart. These definitely taste better the next day.

*Kerry at Snow’s told me he gets his beans at Sam’s Club so recipe forensics told me to look for his chili powder there too; I don’t picture him hopping from market to market like a French housewife. Sam’s sells two chili powders by Tone which, according to their website, are only available through Sam’s. There is a dark chili and a mild and, since Kerry is a pleasant and mild-mannered guy, I guessed the latter. In any case, the main factor in his great beans is the fat which he probably gets for very a good price from his meat supplier.

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