Nigella’s Quick Chili

This week’s I Heart Cooking Clubs theme is One Pot Wonders.  What a perfect time to have such a theme given I had to work all weekend (hence the lateness of my post).  I bought Nigella Express recently, which is great cookbook.  We’ve been having some very unseasonably cool weather here in Kansas, so I decided to make Nigella’s Quick Chili from Nigella Express.  I love making chili when the weather is cool.  Her version was a bit different than I’m used to.  It didn’t contain any chili powder, but it did contain several spices, including cinnamon and cardamom, which I’ve never used in chili.  I did deviate from her recipe a bit by adding an onion and garlic, which I think are essential components of chili.  I made it last night, refrigerated it, and had my husband heat it up while I was at work.  It was delicious!  It was great to come home from work to an already prepared meal.

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Quick Chili (Courtesy of Nigella Express)


  • 5 oz chorizo sausage (not the hard salami sort of sausage), halved lengthwise and cut into 1/4-inch half-moons (I used ground chorizo, as it was all I had access to at the time.)
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1/2 t ground cumin
  • 1/2 t ground coriander
  • 1/2 t ground cinnamon
  • 3 cardamom pods, bruised (I used about 1/2 t ground cardamom instead.)
  • 2 c good-quality tomato and chunky vegetable sauce for pasta (I used diced tomatoes.)
  • 1 14-oz can mixed spicy beans
  • 1/4 c sweet chile sauce
  • 1/4 t chile flakes, optional


  1. Put the chorizo into a hot pan and cook over medium heat until the sausage crisps a little and gives up its orange-red oil.
  2. Add the ground beef and cook for about 5 minutes, breaking it up with a wooden fork to help it brown (at this point, I added the chopped onion and garlic and cooked until opaque).
  3. Stir in the spices and then add the tomato-vegetable pasta sauce, beans, and chile sauce.  Also add the chile flakes if you need more heat.
  4. Bring to a boil, then turn down the heat and simmer for 20 minutes and eat with rice or just as it is.  If you’re not adding any rice, you might consider dolloping with a blob of sour cream and sprinkling some grated cheese and chopped cilantro.  I can’t think of any way of eating this that isn’t good.


Published in: on October 11, 2009 at 4:51 pm  Comments (26)  

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26 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. That sounds like a delicious bowl of chili. And so quick to put together. Perfect for this weather.

    • It hit the spot on a cold, icky day. I’m all about quick-to-make!

  2. Yum and I agree what a great meal to come home too. I’m with you girl on the onion and garlic. It not chilli without those.

    • We’re on the same page, Cassie! I couldn’t leave it out 🙂

  3. Yum, I had my eye on this dish too! I love the idea of the cardamom in there, sounds delish!

    • I’ve only used cardamom in baked good, so this was a switch for me. It really worked well!

  4. A very unique chili–this one is going on the “to try” list. What a great “one dish wonder!”

    • Thanks, Deb! It was really good, and I’ll definitely use this recipe again.

  5. Very interesting, I’ve never used some of these spices in chili…sounds great.

    • I was a bit leery of it, too, Coleen. It ended up tasting good, though 🙂

  6. I’ve been in 40-50 chili cook-offs, and learned one thing- never argue with anyone about their recipe! There are some spices in this chili I personally wouldn’t use, but different parts of the country have different ideas when it come to food!

  7. must be cold in Kansas… I just cooked my chili last night. We had a neighborhood chili throwdown. LOOOOve chili

    • It’s been dang cold, Dave! I bet your chili involved some delicious BBQ of some sort, eh?

  8. Quick, delicious and oh, so comforting…love it!

    • It ended up being a great one-dish meal 🙂

  9. It looks good! It is different, isn’t it, though?

    • Yeah, WC, it was a definite departure from the usual, but it worked out ok!

  10. I’m embarrassed to admit that I have never made a pot of chilli. I think it’s time to remedy that – Nigella express here I come.

    • You should go for it, Suzie! I bet you’d like it.

  11. I thought of making this one too! I like the addition of the spanish chorizo. It looks delicious, comforting, and easy to gobble up 😀 Great choice!!

    • I’d never used chorizo in chili, and it really added good flavor. You should give it a try!

  12. I adore Chorizo and anything that is made with it!

  13. Shelly, I didn’t know you had a blog! It didn’t show up on your profile when I first checked. Anyway, I love your site! This chili is perfect for the chilly fall weather we are having here in Ontario!

  14. you know what? chili just might top mac & cheese as the ultimate comfort food on a cold day. great rendition!

  15. Oh, that looks really good. I just made chili….but not Nigella’s recipe. She recently had a Nigella Feast show air where she made this chili. Quite entertaining!

    • Dang, I missed that episode, Pierce! It was really good 🙂

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