Crockpot Chili and Cast Iron Cornbread

We’ve been snowed-, well more liked iced-, in this weekend. This is perfect chili weather! I’ve made crockpot chili several times before, but have never written down the recipe that I use. I have also found a great cornbread recipe from bettycrocker that uses a cast iron skillet.

Since the crockpot chili takes about 8 hours for the flavors to fully meld and the chili to thicken properly, I started the recipe in the morning. The great thing about chili is that you can add whatever ingredients you like (more veggies, more spices, different types of meat, etc.) and keep adding as you see fit! I like to use turkey burger since it’s less fatty than ground beef as the meat base. I also chopped up half a yellow onion, added two drained/rinsed cans of black beans, one of pinto beans, and one of kidney beans, and one can of drained canned corn. The key ingredients for a good chili are the spices.

First, fully cook the turkey burger and season well with the Curiously Cultured Spice Rub. We found this spice mix at the Farmers’ Market and it is made at a place called The Cookery in Chapel Hill. This mix works great not only as a rub, but as a regular seasoning for almost every meat that we cook. We use it a lot with turkey burger for tacos – simply delicious. After mixing well, add the chopped onion and sautee just long enough for the onions to start producing fragrance.

Add all ingredients to a crockpot – turkey burger with onion, beans, corn, and a jar of mushroom flavored tomato sauce – and mix well. Add the spices – JGM mix, 1 Tablespoon chili powder, 1 Tablespoon garlic powder, 1/2 Tablespoon onion powder, 1/2 Tablespoon pepper, and 1/2 teaspoon red pepper. Mix well, cover, and cook on low for at least 8 hours.

The cornbread takes about 25-30 min to make, so I start making this about 30 min before we are going to be ready to eat dinner. See the recipe at the end of the blogpost for the full recipe. Since this is something that is baked, you can’t really change anything with regard to the recipe šŸ™‚

Preheat oven to 400F and spray a cast iron skillet with Pam. Melt 1/4 cup butter in the microwave (you don’t need to get a skillet out to melt it as described in the recipe since that is all you use the skillet for). Pour melted butter into a medium-sized bowl and add 1 cup milk and 1 egg. Mix well with a fork. Add 1 1/4 cup cornmeal, 1 cup flour, 1/2 cup sugar, 1 Tablespoon baking powder, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.

Stir until the mixture is just moistened. The batter will be lumpy. Pour the batter into the cast iron skillet and spread evenly with a spatula.

Bake at 400F for 25 minutes or until the edges begin to brown and a toothpick comes out cleanly.

And, time to enjoy your homemade chili and cornbread!

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Online Recipe:

Cornbread Recipe

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