Chili Recipe For 20 People

Chili Recipe For 20 People

Article by Enda McLarnon

It is not as difficult to make as you may think but can be challenging if it is your first time. My first tip is to have your ingredients prepared, ready and close at hand. If you are cooking for a group of 20, you need to make two or three batches but don’t compromise on the quality. The entire cooking time will be around two hours.

Here are the ingredients I would recommend.

2 Kilos (5 pounds) of either minced beef, 3 large onions, 1 bulb of garlic, 6 red peppers, 9-10 red or green or mixed chilli peppers, 6 (400g) tins of chopped tomatoes, 3 tablespoons of tomato puree, 3 (400g) tins of kidney beans, 6 teaspoons of cumin and coriander and 3 teaspoons of brown sugar.

I would do this in three batches using three large pots, but depending on what pots and pans you have, you will need to divide the mixes up equally. In this article I will be using three pots and a frying pan.

Top Tip – Get your vegetables ready first. Finely chop the onions and the chilis. Leave the seeds in if you like your food hot. Deseed your red peppers and chop roughly. Leave those now and get your pots into action. Put them on a medium heat and add around 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil to each.

The next task is to get your meat browned by getting it divided into three batches and seared in a hot frying pan. Do one batch at a time in some olive oil and then divide it up between your three pots.

Turn the heat down in your frying pan to a medium temperature. Now peel and roughly chop up the onions and break the garlic bulb into cloves. Toss all of that into the pan and gently fry for around 10 minutes until they soften but don’t actually start to brown. This should all fit into one large frying pan, but if not then do one onion at a time along with a couple of cloves of garlic and add one batch to each pot.

By now you should have equal amounts of meat, onions and garlic in three large pots and you are done with the frying pan.

Now two chopped red peppers go into each pot closely followed by three finely chopped chilis to each pot and mix these in to the meat, onions and garlic. In goes two tins of chopped tomatoes to each pot and a tablespoon of tomato pureee to each pot and then season with sea salt and black pepper.

Mix it altogether and bring to the boil. As soon as it boils up, turn the heat down to a simmer and cover the post. You now leave these to gently simmer away for around an hour.

Now here is the beauty of having three pots. Some like their chili hot and some like it mild. For the hot pot you could add a teaspoon of chili powder or a teaspoon of Piri Piri sauce. Again some people like kidney beans and some don’t so you can decide what will suit best. I usually do a standard chili mild with kidney beans, one that is hot with kidney beans and one that is mild without beans at all. That will suit most tastes. If you find people like it hot then it is easy and quick to spice it up with some chili powder.

So, after an hour the three pots will be good to go and this is when you add the beans if you want.

Get a bowl and add the cumin, coriander and sugar and then drain the kidney beans. (Remember it is a tin of kidney beans per pot, so if doing a plain one, then you only need two tins) They will all go in after the chilli has simmered for around an hour. The important thing to check after the hour is that the meat has cooked and is tender so check that out. If it has then we are good to continue, and if not leave it simmering until it has.

Once the meat is cooked, then get the beans and the cumin, coriander and sugar in and stir thoroughly and then leave to simmer for a further 15 minutes. Salt and pepper again to suit your own taste and you will have more than enough chili for 20 people and with a couple of different strengths.

Cooking rice for 20 people is difficult, so I usually serve this with tortilla, wraps or bread. Personally I like garlic bread with mine and I know others like this a lot. I would also strongly recommend putting out some bowls with lime wedges, sour cream, Parmesan cheese, cheddar cheese and anything that can be used for a dipper.

About the Author

Hi, I am Enda McLarnon and I have been cooking for well over 30 years and it is something I love and am very passionate about. There is something very unique about using chili in any recipe. They add that wonderful rich and unique flavour that sets the taste buds tingling. if you would like to see the many chili recipes then why not visit my website at

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