• Marnie

Better Than Tommy's Chili


As an L.A. native, Tommy's has been an institution for decades, and I grew up eating their delicious chili dogs (and chili burgers & chili fries!). The downside to their chili dogs is that kind of gross feeling you get after you eat it because of how greasy it is. So I decided to try my hand at a copycat recipe that's just as delicious, sans the grease! And believe it or not, the chili really isn't that unhealthy! My Tommy's chili tastes just like the original and it's really easy to make in your slow cooker or instant pot!


Here's the recipe:


Ingredients


  • 4 garlic cloves

  • 2 jalapeños (omit if you don't want it too spicy)

  • 1 carrot

  • 1 medium onion

  • 3 cups water

  • 1 lb ground beef (I used 85/15)

  • 2 TBS chili powder (you can use 3 TBS if you want it more spicy)

  • 1 TBS ancho chili powder (found this at my local Vallarta supermarket)

  • 4 TSP cumin

  • 4 TSP paprika

  • 3 TSP kosher salt

  • 2 TSP light brown sugar

  • 1 TSP oregano

  • 1 TSP ground black pepper

  • 2/3 cup all-purpose flour

  • 1/3 cup corn meal (sometimes called masa harina)

  • 2 cups water

  • 1 TBS cider apple vinegar


Instructions (for the vegetable paste)

  • Peel and cut the carrot into 2 inch pieces.

  • Peel and quarter the onion.

  • If you use the jalapeños, cut the stems off then cut them into lengthwise slices.

  • Add the carrot, onion, garlic and jalapeños to a food processor and pulse until the mixture becomes a paste.


Slow Cooker (my preferred method)

  • Add the vegetable paste, 1 cup of water, ground beef, chili powders, cumin, paprika, salt, sugar, oregano and black pepper to the slow cooker. Stir to combine and break up the ground beef using a large spoon or spatula.

  • Cook for 8 hours on low or 4 hours on high. Give it a stir every hour or so.

  • 30 minutes before the chili is done cooking, whisk together the flour, corn meal and 2 cups of water in a separate bowl and add it to the chili, stirring it in to combine.

  • Stir in the vinegar and let it rest 5 minutes before serving and enjoy! If you want the true Tommy's experience, serve it with yellow mustard and pickles!


Instant Pot

  • Add the vegetable paste, 3 cups of water, ground beef, chili powders, cumin, paprika, salt, sugar, oregano and black pepper to the instant pot. Stir to combine and break up the ground beef using a large spoon or spatula.

  • Close the lid and vent. Select Manual Pressure (High) and set the timer for 18 minutes. Allow natural pressure release (10 minutes), not a quick release.

  • In a small bowl whisk together the flour, corn meal and 2 cups of water. Pour this into the chili mixture, stir to combine and press the Saute option on low and/or cover it. Set it for 10 minutes, stirring often. This will thicken the chili.

  • Stir in the vinegar and let it rest 5 minutes before serving.

Did you make this? Share pics in the comments!


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