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May 27, 2011 06:57 AM

What to do with a can of chili?

I have a can of Hormel chili (no beans) that I don't know what to do with. I bought two cans with a coupon I had. The first was served on a baked potato with sour cream and jalapenos. It was ok, but I want to do something else this time. I'm not crazy about the taste of it, so any ideas to doctor it up would be helpful. I'm tempted to just donate it to a food bank, but I'm determined to make it edible. Any ideas?

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  1. Oh, definitely doctor it up- add chile powder (pure chile, as opposed to 'chili' powder, which also has salt and will overdo it on that aspect if you add it to canned chili), cumin, oregano and garlic powder. At least a TB of chile/cumin, half that for the garlic/oregano. I'd also include a portion of cayenne in that chile powder component.

    Then you can do as you did- use it as a topping on nachos, chili dogs, etc.

    1. Well, next time buy a can of Wolf Brand, and you won't need to do much to it. ;-)
      Despite some unkind comments you might get from others, canned chili is nothing to be ashamed of! The classic South Texas concession stand treat of Frito pie is hot chili over a small bag of Fritos, topped with grated cheese and optional chopped onions. Bottled hot sauces are offered to taste. Best served with a plastic fork.

      Btw, sometimes the serving vessel is the bag itself, slit on the side, but a paper hotdog boat will work just fine.

      1 Reply
      1. re: marthasway

        I love Frito pie! That was the number one favorite school lunch (yes, yikes!) at the school where my DD went to kindergarten. Even the parents would show up when they served that. It is much greater than the sum of its rather questionable parts.

      2. Smother with cheese and sour cream. Makes everything and anything delicious.

        1. Add diced onion, mustard, a bit of ketchup and worcestershire to taste to make a michigan style topping for hot dogs.

          1. Oooh, make chili dip out of it. Everyone loves chili dip!

            Spread a bar of cream cheese (even Neufchatel is fine, but not no-fat) across the bottom of an 8 x 8 baking dish.

            Go ahead and doctor the Hormel as suggested with chili powder or whatever you like, seasoning-wise. I wouldn't add a whole tablespoon for just one can--a teaspoon will probably go a long way. You can always add more...

            Spread the chili over the cream cheese.
            Sprinkle shredded cheddar (or your cheese of choice) over the chili.
            Bake in the oven till bubbly and serve with tortilla chips.
            There is NEVER leftover chili dip! :)

            It tastes even better, of course, when it's your own idea for another time.

            6 Replies
            1. re: kattyeyes

              I can get on board with starting out with a lesser amount and then adding more if needed. I usually add more during my midnight snacking when I do this sort of thing, though, but everybody's taste is different.

              1. re: TongoRad

                :) Dig your avatar, btw. I'm a Day of the Dead girl myself!

              2. re: kattyeyes

                I was going to post this exact recipe - it is ALWAYS a huge hit!

                1. re: biondanonima

                  Me too... I just made a vegetarian version. I took a can of vegetarian chili, put it into the blender so that that beans were smooth, added a habanero to kick it up a bit. I topped it with cheddar, plus a process cheese square which made it a bit more creamy, put it in the microwave and it worked well. There was some leftover the next day and I put it over a Trader Joes tamale.

                  1. re: biondanonima

                    It's interesting. I've never seen or even heard of this. Could it be a regional thing? Bob's family makes a dip with canned, no bean chili and tons of grated cheddar cheese. Got to have the dipping Fritos for it :) The only thing I use cream cheese for is spread on bagels!

                    1. re: c oliver

                      I never heard of it until a friend at work told me about it. She lives in Northern NJ. It was super. I didn't think I'd like the cream cheese in it but it works well.