Southwestern “No Bean” Chili

no bean chili

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If you have trouble digesting beans or your dietary restrictions don’t allow them, then you’ll love this hearty bean-less version of my chili! (Click photo to enlarge.)

This recipe is also delicious served over your favorite noodles and/or topped with shredded cheese!

INGREDIENTS:
3 lb ground beef (grass-fed is best)
2 large onions, finely diced
2 green bell peppers, finely diced
1 red bell pepper, finely diced
2 large tomatoes, diced (optional)
9 cups water
3 (6oz.) cans tomato paste (choose brand that contains only “tomatoes”)
4 TBSP chili powder, to taste
2 tsp cumin, to taste
2 tsp sea salt, to taste
½ tsp black pepper, to taste
Garlic granules, to taste
Red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper, to taste (optional)

DIRECTIONS:
Sauté onion, peppers and beef in large pot until meat is browned and veggies are tender. Season to taste with sea salt, black pepper and garlic granules. Transfer to a large crock pot. Add remaining ingredients and stir well. Simmer in crock pot on Low for about 8 -10 hours. If possible, taste a few times while it cooks and adjust seasonings to your taste. This recipe freezes well! It also tastes even better re-heated, so feel free to make in advance! (If you don’t have a crock pot, just simmer together in a large pot on the stove for at least one hour.)

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Smoky Butternut Squash Soup

smoked butternut soup

This is my new absolute FAVORITE soup of all time!!! If you love to make your home smell like a fancy restaurant, then this is the soup for you!

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MAKES ~ 16 cups (or you can cut this recipe in half for 8 cups of soup)

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 TBSP coconut oil
  • 2 medium onions, peeled and chopped
  • Two 3-pound butternut squash (6 lbs total), peeled and seeded
  • 8 medium carrots, chopped
  • 12 cups Smoked Chicken Broth
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

DIRECTIONS:

Cut squash into 1-inch chunks, and set aside.

Melt coconut oil in a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook until translucent, about 8 minutes.

Add squash, carrots and broth. Bring to a simmer and cook until veggies are quite tender, about 15-20 minutes.

Remove from heat and carefully use an immersion blender to puree the soup until smooth (keep in contact with the bottom of the pan, so you avoid splashing soup and burning yourself!).

Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Enjoy! This is great leftover, too!

CHECK OUT OUR RECIPES PAGE FOR MORE GREAT RECIPES!!!

(Psst….If you enjoy this recipe,  be sure to get yourself a copy of our additive-free cookbook & grocery shopping guide, “Eating Additive-Free“! It’s stuffed with 150+ more tasty recipes!! Your satisfaction is guaranteed…or your money back!)

Smoked Chicken Broth (in crock pot)

Smoking meat can be a bit of a pain, and I’m not entirely sure that it’s all that healthy for you, but…it sure makes for some delicious broth!!!

If you don’t have a smoker, you can still make this recipe if you:

A) Are fortunate enough to know of a grocer who sells whole smoked chickens with no artificial ingredients or flavorings.

B) Have a friend or acquaintance who smokes chickens but normally throws the carcass away. (Just don’t ever let them taste your broth or they’ll start keeping their carcasses to make their own, and you’ll be back to square one!)

For more great recipes and all of the grocery shopping tips you need to ensure that you select the most additive-free versions of all ingredients needed to make this recipe (and all of my recipes), check out my book “Eating Additive-Free“!

MAKES ~ 12 cups

INGREDIENTS:

  • Cooked carcass and skin from 1 whole, smoked chicken (if there are a few meat scraps still dangling from the bones, that’s all the better)
  • 1 large onion (skin on), chopped into large chunks
  • 2 or 3 large carrots, cut into large chunks
  • 1/2 bunch celery, cut into large chunks (I usually use the inner stalks/leaves)
  • 1 head/bulb of garlic (skin on), cut in half so all cloves are cut in half
  • 1 heaping TBSP sea salt
  • 1/2 TBSP whole peppercorns
  • 2 TBSP Bragg brand apple cider vinegar (optional)
  • about 4 quarts water

DIRECTIONS:

Place all ingredients in a large crock pot. Cook on low 8-12 hours. Strain through a fine mesh strainer. (Make sure your strainer is fine mesh, so no bone slivers slip through!) Discard all bones, skin and veggies. To remove excess fat from the strained broth, allow it to cool completely in the fridge. The fat will settle to the top and harden a bit, so you can scrape/skim it off if you’d like. Use right away, or can/freeze in the portion sizes you most often use!

 A NOTE ABOUT SMOKING CHICKENS…

  I’ve tried all sorts of recipes, rubs, etc. for smoking chicken. Honestly, I found it to be a pain, so I decided one day to just throw the chickens into the smoker plain – I’m talkin’ absolutely no oil, butter, seasoning or anything. And they tasted just fine to us (especially given the labor savings). So that’s the way we always smoke them now!

We’ve also grown fond of stuffing our smoker to the max – after all, if you’ve gotta clean it, might as well make it worth your time. In our smoker, that means smoking 4 birds at a time.

We eat the meat warm (as quarters) for dinner on the day we smoke them. Then I take all the meat and skin off the carcasses and make 4 batches of broth over the following 48 hours. (Of course, if you don’t have time/desire to make the broth immediately, you can also throw the carcasses/skin in the freezer for later use.) I cut or rip apart all of the meat, and we eat some of it in salads over the next few days. The rest is thrown into the freezer for future use! I just LOVE to cook once, and eat a bunch of times!

I’m not including smoking instructions here because every smoker is different. Ours happens to take about 4 hours to get to the point that the meat is falling off the bones 🙂