These 18 easy canned chili recipes are going to make your life so much easier! Each of these recipes can be completed start-to-finish in less than 25 minutes, and some can be done in about 15 minutes.
It’s sometimes difficult to find flavorful, delicious, and easy recipes for weeknight meals. And, you know, the last thing I want to do after a long day at work is to come home and spend an hour (or more) in the kitchen cooking and then cleaning up. So, these are my go-to recipes for a quick and delicious work-night meal.
What Kind of Meat is in Canned Chili?
Canned chili may contain beef and/or pork.
How to Make Canned Chili Really Good?
If you’d like to make your canned chili taste more like homemade, you can any or all of these ingredients:
- Beef Broth (or stock)
- Black Pepper, Ground
- Brown Sugar (just a pinch)
- Cayenne Pepper
- Celery Seed, Ground
- Chiles, Green
- Chicken Broth (or stock)
- Chili Powder
- Cinnamon (just a pinch)
- Cocoa Powder
- Coffee, Strong (a small cupful)
- Corn, Sweet
- Dark Chocolate Squares
- Garlic, Powdered or Minced
- Jalapenos, Diced or Sliced
- Onions, Diced
- Soy Sauce
- Sugar (just a pinch)
- Tomatoes, Fresh or Canned
- Worcestershire Sauce
- Vinegar (a spoonful, added just before serving
These ingredients can be sauteed for a short time to bring out their natural flavors before adding them to your canned chili.
Does Vinegar Make Chili Taste Better?
You can give your chili a brighter taste by adding just a spoonful of vinegar prior to serving.
What Secret Ingredient will Deepen the Flavor of Your Chili?
If you want to go all in, you can add some pureed pumpkin to your seasonings, before you add them to your chili. This will do a few things:
- Deepen the overall flavor of your chili
- Balance the heat of any pepper and heat you added to your chili
- Give your chili a bit of sweetness
Why do You Put Butter in Chili?
You can put butter (or a plant-based alternative) in chili to give it a smooth and creamy texture and to add that unique butter flavor. The addition of butter may make a person take an additional bite of your dish without even realizing why.
What Kind of Onion is Best for Chili?
White onion is usually best if used raw in salads, and for use in any Mexican food, pasta salad, potato salad, and white sauces.
Should Chili be Thick or Soupy?
Canned chili us normally quite thick. If you’re going to want to pour it over something, you may want to dilute it just a bit. That can be done by adding:
- Beef Stock
- Chicken Stock
- Tomatoes (diced or crushed), canned
Should I Use the Liquid in Canned Beans for Chili?
In most instances, the best idea is to drain and rinse the canned beans you want to add to your chili. If you leave them in their canned juices, your chili will be diluted (maybe even runny). If you want your chili to be thick and have a wonderful texture, don’t add the liquid from the beans.
Should I Use Pinto or Kidney Beans in Chili?
Pinto beans or normally used in chili. However, other great choices are black beans and red kidney beans.
When Should You add Beans to Chili?
Canned beans can be added to canned chili at any time. If you’re going to heat your chili, the beans should need to heat for about the same amount of time.
Why is My Canned Chili Watery?
You may have added too much liquid to your canned chili if it is watery. You can do one (or a combination) of three things:
- Add some solids to your chili, like diced tomatoes and/or onions, minced garlic, or jalapenos (sliced or diced).
- Cook over low heat for 15 minutes to reduce the liquid.
- Add a small amount of flour or cornstarch as a thickener.
What is the Secret Ingredient to Thicken Chili?
There are lots of ingredients that will thicken your chili, and you probably have almost all of them in your pantry:
- Beans, Pureed
- Tomatillas, Pureed
- Tortilla Chips, Crushed
You can add one or more of the above ingredients, then simmer your chili for a few minutes until thickened.
Do You Put the Lid on Chili to Thicken It?
The reason for simmering chili is to get some of the liquid to evaporate. That is done by cooking it uncovered and letting the steam escape from the pan.
Are You Supposed to Drain Diced Tomatoes for Chili?
Normally, there is no need to drain your diced tomatoes before adding it to canned chili. However, if you feel that your canned chili will be too thin after adding the diced tomatoes, you can either drain the liquid from the tomatoes, or put the tomatoes in a separate pot and simmer until some of the juice is absorbed by the tomatoes.
How do You Add Depth to Chili?
Soy sauce, tamari, and Worcestershire sauce will add depth to your chili by amplifying the flavors that are already in your chili. Beef or chicken broth (or stock) can also add some depth to your chili, because you are adding a slight amount of animal fat.
Canned Chili Recipes
Canned chili is such a versatile food item. I keep a couple of cans in my pantry at all times, just in case I want to whip up one of these fantastic recipes!
Five-Minute Frito Chili Pie
Make it quick and eat it utp I promise there won't be any leftovers!
Chili Tater Tot Casserole
Tater tots with chili and cheese...genius! Just thinking about it makes my mouth water. Serve it up with, ummm, well, anything or nothing! After all, it is a meal in itself.
Chili’s Queso Dip Recipe Copycat
This chili queso dip can be served with tortilla chips as a snack, or as a sauce to enhance other dishes like enchiladas or tacos.
Killer Air Fryer Hot Dogs and Chili Dogs!
These air fryer hot dogs with chili result in a hot dog that is crispy on the outside and tender and juicy on the inside. Combine that with some heated up canned chili, and you'll have a delicious main dish that only takes about 10 minutes to prepare!
Chili Cheese Omelette
This recipe calls for about 10 ingredients, includng the egg and chili, but the good news is that you probably have all of the ingredients on hand. And even if you have to go to the grocery store to get some stuff, it will be worth the trip!
Tater Tot Chili Dog Casserole
Tater tots, hot dogs, chili, and cheese...that's all it takes to make this delicious and filling dish.
Hormel Chili Dip
OMG!! Chili, cheese, and cream cheese...all in one dip! You can make a meal on this dish. Serve it as a snack for your favorite get-together, or just enjoy it all by yourself (no one has to know).
Cheesy Chili Mac
4 (that's right, 4) ingredients and about 20 minutes, and you've got a meal...what a deal! Your family will love this cheesy dinner, and if you want to dress it up a little, just put a little shredded cheddar on top!
Chili Cheese Tater Tot Casserole
This recipe includes making your own chili, but you can use canned chili to save some time. Either way, it's a great dish. Just give it a try!
Frito Pie Casserole
Frito pie--yummmmy! When I was a kid, we used to have frito pie about once a month...it was a real treat. My mom thought it was a real treat, too. Because, by the time I was about 10 years old, I could put it together all by myself. That meant she didn't have to cook!
Chili Cornbread Casserole >X
Hot cornbread, chili, beans, and cheese--all baked in one pan. What a great idea! You've got to try this recipe!
Try Chili Stuffed Peppers Tonight!
These chili-stuffed bell peppers are wonderful to eat, and to look at! They are really easy to put together, too. You'll want to make them for family and friends...they will love you for it!
Loaded Chili Baked Potato
Microwave those potatoes, and this dish can be a delicious meal in about 15 minutes! And just imagine that there's only a few dishes to clean up, too!
Easy Cheesy Chili Tortilla Bake Recipe
Canned chili, tortillas, onion, and cheese. That's all you need t make this delicious meal. To increase the deliciousness, add cilantro and/or diced onion.
Chili Cheese Nachos
Create thse scrumptious chili cheese nachos for a meal or for a snack--your choice. You can simplify this dish and make it more time efficient by using canned chili.
Sheet Pan Chili Cheese Tater Tots
Put it all together in one pan, so the clean up is super easy! What a fantistic idea for a game night meal!
Best Air Fryer Chili Cheese Fries Recipe
Want to create a 20-minute meal that your family just can't resist? Well, here it is!
Wet Burritos with Manwich
Wet burritos means that the burrito is topped with some delicious sauce! You can't beat these wet burritos with chili inside and sauce on top, too!