Did you know that a chipotle pepper is a smoked-dried jalapeño? When jalapeños are ripe and deep red in color, and have lost most of their moisture they are selected to be made into chipotles.

I had a can of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce sitting in my pantry, staring at me in the face for way too long so I decided it was time to find a recipe. This chili fit the bill, especially after playing soccer in the snow on a cold spring day like today. 

This recipe, as like most chili recipes can easily be adjusted to your taste preference. The chipotles add a nice amount of heat and smokiness to the chili. I make it exactly as listed below for myself and children (I remove chipotle seeds) and we think it is perfect; however, my husband needs more heat. I divide the chili into two pots, one for him and one for myself and kids. In his chili, I add the rest of the chipotle peppers (with seeds), the adobo sauce and an extra tablespoon of chili powder. Taste it as you go and you should be able to find the level of heat/spice you like.
Three Bean and Beef Chili- Clean Eating
Adapted loosely from Ellie Krieger
Makes 10 cups (serves 8, serving size 1 1/4 cup)
1 pound ground sirloin, organic & grass-fed
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, diced (1 cup)
1 red bell pepper, diced (1 cup)
2 carrots, diced (1/2 cup)
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
2 cups water
2 chipotle chili peppers in adobo sauce, minced (remove seeds if you don't want heat)
2 tablespoons adobo sauce from the can of chipotles
1 tablespoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 (15.5-ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15.5-ounce) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15.5-ounce) can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
avocado slices for garnish, optional
In a large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat cook the ground sirloin, breaking up the meat with a spoon, until the meat is no longer pink. Drain the fat from the meat, using a colander, run water over the meat and set aside.
Heat the oil in the same pot over moderate heat. Add the onion, bell pepper and carrots, cook, stirring occasionally until the vegetables are soft, about 7 minutes. Add the cumin and cook, stirring for 1 minute. Add the cooked ground beef. Stir in the tomatoes, water, chipotle peppers and adobo sauce, chili powder, oregano, salt and pepper. Simmer, partially covered, stirring from time to time, for 30 minutes. Stir in the beans and cook, partially covered, 20 minutes longer. If the chili is too thick add a little more water if it is too runny let it simmer longer until it thickens up. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper. Garnish with some avocado slices. My daughter loves her chili with shredded sharp cheddar cheese and crushed baked tortilla chips.
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