Second-place Chili

Diane C.


I was working for Army Community Service on an Army base overseas. The base commander decided to hold a chili cook-off to boost morale. The notices went out around the base four weeks in advance. The contest was posted on the marquee by the base entrance. It was advertised in the community paper. Flyers were posted on every bulletin board in every building on base. The day before the cook-off our office got a call from the base commander. They didn't have a single entry for the contest. So Kathy and I decided to enter. Kathy's Pima Chili won First place. I won Second Place. Hence the name.


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  • 2 lb
    ground beef
  • 1 medium
    onion, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp
    each, salt and pepper
  • 1 Tbsp
    chili powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp
    oregano, dried
  • 1/2 tsp
    celery seed
  • 1 medium
    bay leaf
  • 1 tsp
    marjoram, dried
  • 1 tsp
    thyme, dried
  • 1 tsp
    basil, dried
  • 1/4 tsp
    ground cloves
  • 1/2 c
    taco sauce
  • 1 Tbsp
    canola oil
  • 3 can(s)
    red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 3 can(s)
    tomatoes, diced
  • 1 can(s)
    tomato sauce
  • 3 clove
    garlic, minced

How to Make Second-place Chili


  1. In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Brown the ground beef til no longer pink. Drain off the grease.
    On another burner, place a 4 qt. stockpot or dutch oven. Pour the cooked ground beef into the stockpot.
    Turn the stockpot on to medium heat.
  2. Add the other ingredients and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer 2 hours.
  3. Notes:
    On the taco sauce, I use mild or medium.
    You can make this in a slow-cooker.
    Kathy's Pima Chili consisted of chuck roast, onions and jalapenos. No beans. No tomatoes.
    This was made when the U.S. had a surplus of beef and gave it away to the troops overseas. We were allowed one package per month with our ration card. The packages were huge. We would get ground beef, a chuck roast, steaks, approximately 10 lbs worth in a package.

Printable Recipe Card

About Second-place Chili

Course/Dish: Bean Soups, Chili
Main Ingredient: Beans/Legumes
Regional Style: American
Hashtags: #beans, #hearty, #chili, #beef

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