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Two Must-Have Chili Recipes

The fall chill is finally in the air, which makes me crave hot and hearty meals. Nothing fits that bill better than a steaming pot of chili. In fact, October is National Chili month, so I teamed up with Bush's beans to create two new chili recipes inspired by different regions of the country.

First, we have a Southern-inspired Spicy Downhome Chili with Cormeal Waffles that is the perfect combination of golden, fluffy cornbread and spicy, meaty chipotle chili.

Next is a Cajun Chili Gumbo that is briming with flavor from Cajun seasoning, andouille sausage, okra, and tomatoes and is served over rice to make it a complete meal.

I hope you'll try out both of these recipes, and please let me know which one is your favorite!

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BUSH'S Spicy Downhome Chili and Cornmeal Waffles:


For the waffles

1 cup wheat germ

2 1/2 cups yellow cornmeal muffin mix

1 cup butter, melted

1 large egg

2 cups milk

For the chili

2 cans BUSH'S Mild Mixed Chili Beans

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 cup yellow onion, chopped

1 green bell pepper, chopped

1 pound lean ground beef

2 tablespoons chipotle chili powder (use less if you like a milder chili)

2 tablespoons smoked paprika

2 tablespoons ground cumin

1 (28oz.) can fire-roasted crushed tomatoes

2 tablespoons dark brown sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

Garnish: cheese, plain Greek yogurt, green onions, pickled jalapenos, for serving


For the waffles

Preheat the waffle iron according to manufacturer's instructions. Mix all the waffle ingredients together in a large bowl until blended. Bake the waffles in batches and then set aside and keep warm.

For the chili

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the ground beef until no longer pink. Add the onion, garlic, bell pepper, chipotle chili powder, paprika, cumin, and salt, and cook until the vegetables are tender. Stir in the beans (undrained), tomatoes (with their juices), and brown sugar. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes or until thickened slightly, uncovered, stirring occasionally. Serve the chili over the cornmeal waffles and top with cheese, yogurt, onions and/or pickled jalapenos, if desired, and enjoy! Yield: 8 servings.

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BUSH'S Cajun Chili Gumbo:


2 tablespoons canola oil

1 cup white onion, chopped

3 stalks celery, chopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1/2 pound andouille chicken sausage

1 pound ground turkey

2 tablespoons Cajun spice blend

2 tablespoons chili powder

2 tablespoons ground cumin

1 (28 oz.) can crushed tomatoes

3/4 cup okra, sliced 1/2" thick

2 cans (16 oz.) BUSH'S Kidney Beans in a Spicy Chili Sauce

4 cups cooked rice, for serving


Heat the canola oil over medium-high heat in a large nonstick pot. Cook the onion, celery, and garlic in the oil until tender. Stir in the tomato paste until blended in. Add the turkey, sausage, Cajun spice blend, chili powder, and cumin, and cook over medium-high heat until the meat is cooked through and no longer pink. Add the tomatoes and okra and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low and continue to simmer for 20 minutes. Add the beans, undrained, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for about 10 minutes more, uncovered, and stirring frequently, until it thickens slightly. Serve the Cajun Chili Gumbo over the rice and enjoy! Yield: 6-8 servings.