November 12, 2019

It's In The Bag - An Unmistakably Weis blog on food and life

Chili Change-Ups


POSTED BY | POSTED IN Healthy Bites Articles | POSTED ON 8-31-2015

ChiliChili is the ultimate cold-weather comfort food. More than hearty, filling and warming, this classic one-pot meal requires only a few basic pantry staples, can be easily adjusted to match your family’s taste preferences and it generally makes a large batch that only tastes better as leftovers. Reinvent the ordinary cup of chili with new flavors and textures to change it up.

Use Leaner Protein

Choose leaner meats to reduce saturated fat and cholesterol content. Opt for at least 90 percent lean ground beef, ground turkey breast or al fresco® All Natural Chicken Sausage. Made with lean, skinless chicken meat and seasoned with gourmet ingredients, these chicken sausages contain 70 percent less fat and 30 percent less sodium than pork sausage. They are fully-cooked to speed up cooking time and contain no nitrates, nitrites, preservatives, artificial flavors or gluten. You can find all varieties, including Sweet Italian Style, in the fresh meats department to use in our recipe for White Sausage Chili.

Boost the Beans

Beans add texture, flavor and body to chili recipes and are an inexpensive way to stretch the batch. Stir in an extra can of beans to replace all or some of the meat to decrease the saturated fat content in chili recipes. Beyond chili, Weis Quality Beans can be used in many recipes to provide valuable nutrients like B-vitamins, iron, potassium, fiber and plant-based protein. Stir cannellini or Great Northern beans into broth-based white chili recipes and dark red kidney, pinto or black beans into tomato-based chili. Always drain and rinse beans before use to reduce sodium content by up to 40 percent.

Pump up the Veggies

Vegetables like bell and jalapeño peppers, onions, corn and tomatoes are a mainstay in most chili recipes. For faster, veggie-packed chili, use new Furmano’s® Tomatoes Petite Diced Tomatoes with Green Chilies, Chili Style Diced Tomatoes with Ancho Chili and Cumin and Salsa Style Petite Diced Tomatoes with Spicy Green Chilies and Lime that are recipe-ready and pre-seasoned for convenience. Since 1921, this family-owned and operated tomato grower and packer has been producing sweet, summer ripe tasting tomatoes that are canned within hours of harvesting. If you prefer chunky chili use Chunky Crushed or Diced Tomatoes; or for a smoother chili, try Crushed or Pureed Tomatoes.

Brighten Flavors

Add a small amount of an acidic ingredient, like a splash of fresh lime juice, cider vinegar or a spoonful of sour cream at the end of cooking to give chili more complexity and a bright and tangy flavor. Triple-churned Breakstone’s® Reduced Fat Sour Cream delivers an unbeatable smooth and creamy texture to our White Sausage Chili with just 35 calories per serving and 60 percent less fat than regular sour cream.

Finish it Off

Top your chili off with fixin’s like avocado, shredded cheese, fresh cilantro, sliced green onions, hot sauce or Simply Tostito’s® Blue Corn Tortilla Chips. Whether you prefer to crush them overtop or use them for scooping, the clean, corn flavor of these chips is the perfect complement to chili. Compared to other tortilla chips, they are also lower in sodium with just 80 milligrams per serving. All snacks in the new Simply line are made without artificial colors, flavors or preservatives—just simple, wholesome ingredients.

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