Sunday Chili

This recipe is an irreplaceable staple in my house.

There’s just absolutely nothing more satisfying or comforting than a bowl of chili, topped with melting cheese, sour cream and zingy guacamole.

I call it Sunday Chili because it’s a dish you can throw in the oven during the day, go off and do your Sunday chilling, come back a few hours later and serve up a supper dreams are made of!

Easy Sunday Chili Recipe-1

Chili recipes are pretty controversial things, surprisingly enough!

People like different cuts of meat, different flavours, some like a dark, dry chilli and others a much thinner, brighter, saucy chilli.

This is one I’ve made since my school days, so I make no claim that it’s traditional… but good god, it’s good!

Easy Sunday Chili Recipe-2

Rich, deep, spicy flavours, a smooth texture and a gentle lift from the fresh tomato kick at the end.

My top secret ingredient?

Proper chocolate.

Easy Sunday Chili Recipe-3

The Saint Lucians make some of the best chocolate in the world, but don’t limit themselves to baking cakes and warming up hot chocolate.

Their cocoa goes into savoury and sweet dishes alike, adding a depth and richness to the meal that it hard to replicate.

…But also rather hard to come by. A friend at the tourism board sent me a couple’a sticks to launch their “Chocolate Heritage Month” but if you have a good speciality/healthfood store near you, ask them for some help in getting hold of it.

If all else fails, use good quality cocoa powder.

Right, enough of the secret ingredient and onto the rest! To serve 2 (and you can multiply as needed) you’ll need:

A pot with a lid

Olive oil

1 red onion, chopped

1 clove garlic, chopped or crushed

2tsp dried chillies

2tsp cayenne pepper

2tsp smoked paprika

500g beef mince (the best quality available)

Glass of red wine

2x 400g cans of chopped tomatoes

100g (half a tube) of concentrated tomato puree

1 heaped tablespoon of grated cocoa or cocoa powder

Pinch of salt

Easy Sunday Chili Recipe-4

Chop up your onions and garlic.

I would usually crush the garlic, but my crusher has gone walkabout.

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Pop the oven onto 15oC/300F to warm up.

Put your pot onto a medium heat on the hob and add a splash of olive oil.

Easy Sunday Chili Recipe-6

When it’s hot, fry your onions and garlic.

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Toss in your chillies.

Easy Sunday Chili Recipe-8

Your cayenne pepper.

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And your smoked paprika.

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Mix it all around together, making sure the onions don’t burn.

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Open a window, it’s going to smell seriously spicy!

Add your mince.

Easy Sunday Chili Recipe-12

Break it up, mix it around and make sure it all gets a good lick of flavour.

Easy Sunday Chili Recipe-13

Keep mixing it around until it’s browned all over.

Add a generous glass of wine.

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Let it boil away for a minute or two.

Then add your tinned tomatoes and puree.

Easy Sunday Chili Recipe-15

Next up comes the chocolate.

Easy Sunday Chili Recipe-16

Easy Sunday Chili Recipe-17

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Tip it in and stir about.

Easy Sunday Chili Recipe-19

Add a pinch of salt and you’re ready for the oven.

Easy Sunday Chili Recipe-20

Pop the lid on and cook for 3-4 hours depending how long you can wait!

Stir it now and then, but try not to lift the lid off too often.

You’ll want to save that for when you serve up!

Easy Sunday Chili Recipe-21

Pink Le Creuset

Patterned bowls // Wooden bowls

Easy Sunday Chili Recipe-22

What you serve it with is up to you.

Go British with rice, go TexMex and pile it ontop of nachos – sprinkle on a mountain of cheese and put back in the oven to melt, go American with bread buns and make Sloppy Joes (a chili sandwich!), or just have a bowl of the stuff.

Easy Sunday Chili Recipe-23

I always make far more than I need because it makes the best leftovers in the world.

Seal it up on Sunday, put it in the fridge and you can have supper sorted every night until Wednesday at least! Epic packed lunches, too.

When you want to tuck into the leftovers, just take as much as you need and heat it up on the hob or in the microwave. Once it’s been re-heated once, you can’t heat it up again.

Put Sunday Chili on the agenda this weekend and it’ll wipe all those Sunday night blues from your system. Guaranteed.

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  • Jeannie C

    The best kind of recipes! Paradoxically, little effort for maximum reward!

    • Rosie

      Agreed Jeannie! Anything you can leave by itself to get delicious is fine by me!
      Similarly, the leftovers taste better the next day.

  • I’m not a big fan of chili, but the fact that you added chocolate make me want to give it a try 😉

    • Rosie

      Not a big fan?! I think it’s the best!

  • Wow I’ve never heard of chocolate being put in chili before – that’s definitely an interesting twist although I see how the rich flavour kick could work… I may give this a go next time and see…!


    • Rosie

      You’ll love it KJ! x

  • Georgina HattonWoods

    Wow, I have never seen chocolate being used surprisingly. Going to try this with Vegan mince, I know it wont have so much flavour but been trying to find a decent chilli recipe for months now. Love the pink Le Crueseut, going to have to reinvest next time I am at TK Maxx, I successfully broke my powder blue chilli pot!

    • Rosie

      Sounds interesting, G! Let me know how the vegan one turns out x

    • Kassie

      I’m no vegan but love soya mince (dry, not frozen)! It has a really great texture, is so cheap, stores for years and absorbs flavour so much more intensely than normal mince 🙂
      Will give this a try with that, sounds delicious xx

  • LOVE your pink Le Creuset pot.

    Katie x

    • Rosie

      Me too! x

  • Ahhh Rosie, you just can’t beat a good chili to cheer the soul can you?!

    Lauren xx | The Lifestyle Diaries

    • Rosie

      Total soul food Lauren! x

  • We must be on the same wavelength Rosie, I made chilli last night too!

    Krissie x –

    • Rosie

      Great minds, Krissie! x

  • Right, I’m adding chocolate to my next chili! Sounds so great x

    Martha Jane |

    • Rosie

      You’re gon’ loooove it Martha Jane!

  • I always add a little square of dark chocolate to my chili too! It seriously makes all the difference… And now I need to put chili on the weekend menu!

    • Rosie

      Boom! Great work Anna x

  • Yes! Love this. Although I tend to add chilli flakes and some kidney beans and chickpeas.

    Will do an adaptation of both this weekend.

    I’m team teal for the pans though!

    Fie x Coffee & Confetti

  • Sunday chili and chilling, I like it! Such a healthy dish too if you eat without rice

    Suze | LuxuryColumnist

  • Jennie / Scarletscorchdroppers

    Oh you can’t beat a good chilli, can you! Whenever I make a pot I make about 5 times more than I’ll need so I know there will be plenty for leftovers. It tastes surprisingly good eaten cold straight from the fridge….!

    Jennie // Scarletscorchdroppers

  • mollie
  • Leila Gunn

    Rosie you always manage to make the most ordinary of dishes look beyond delicious! I’ve never heard of chocolate in chilli before, but I think I’ll have to give it a try.

  • ninegrandstudent

    I adore a good chilli – being allergic to tomatoes means my recipe is slightly more taxing that most (I have a quick version and a not-so-quick version) but it means I can still indulge. I love mine with cheese, soured cream and crunchy lettuce. Maybe a few tortilla chips too… x

    NINEGRANDSTUDENT: A Student Lifestyle Blog

  • Chelsea S

    I would adore this! shame my chocolate allergic boyfriend wouldn’t! one for girls night maybe xx

  • PAAR

    Yum! Looks delicious!

  • This looks just the consistency I love for a chilli – just how hot/spicy is it? I prefer a milder (think Makhani/Korma), I know I’m a real wimp!
    Really want to try making this.

    Hugs Adele xoxo

  • Have never heard of adding chocolate to chili but now dying to try it! Looks delicious x

  • Looks amazing! Chili has always been the most comforting food to me — Love eating it in the winter!

  • Wow this looks amazing! I can’t wait to try it out sometime when the weather starts to turn!

  • I’ve never heard of adding chocolate to chili, but it sounds fantastic. You’re making me crave the whole set! Can’t wait to give this recipe a whirl! I’m sure the hardest part is the waiting for those 4 hours to pass 🙂 Great recipe as always!
    xx Sydney

  • That looks so good! I make a very similar chili in the crockpot, but my family and I make it Cincinnati style by putting the chili on top of plain spaghetti noodles with cheese and beans (if you like your chili that way). It’s perfect for a lazy Sunday! x Kate

  • Evelien

    I’ve been putting dark chocolate in my chilli for years..and everybody I tell about it thinks I’m crazy! But its the best! And I add some chorizo too!

    X Evelien

  • Tiago

    Hi Rose!
    I am a big fan of the recipes you put here in the blog. I already did the Chicken Satay twice and was heavenly.
    Only one question on the 2tsp of dried chillies. How spicy are usually your chillies? Because the ones I am using now are quite powerful and maybe it will be too much, specially if they stay for 3hours in the oven getting stronger 🙂

  • Sophie Mcfegan

    Ugh this looks so good. Nothing makes me question vegetarianism more than Mexican food! Never tried chilli with chocolate, I don’t know how well it’d go with quorn though!


  • yumm! Also love the leftovers for the office 🙂

    Mahshid مهشید

  • Emily K.

    I have been dying for a good chilli recipe to try (all of my others have been revolting) and this looks perfect! Plus, I love the chocolate idea, almost makes it like mexican mole sauce :D. Can’t wait to try…you are a very good food photographer.

  • Such a fantastic recipe! xx

  • That sounds so good!

  • Kate

    Do you think that instead of the oven, I could make it all in a slow cooker/crock pot? I’d fry it all in the pan and just transfer it to the crock pot. I don’t have any oven bakeware at the moment.
    I was just thinking about chili last week in the cold rain so this sounds perfect.

  • Looks delicious, I can’t wait to try this next Sunday! I found a ‘cornbread for two’ recipe that I’ve fallen in love with recently that I’ll have to pair this with – American style!


  • Chili is my favourite fall and winter meal — always so hearty and delicious! Thanks for sharing.

  • My gosh that looks yum… you just can’t beat a hearty warm meal 🙂


  • Yummmmmmmmmmmmm. Will try this out and see how it tastes!

    Heba xx The Heba

  • Love this recipe – chili is the most warming thing and I have to agree, tastes better the next day (as with bolognese!)
    I love adding chocolate to get a really deep and delicious flavour too!

  • My mom makes the best vegetarian chili with zucchini coins, tears of kale and lots of beans – it’s great for anyone who doesn’t eat meat and it’s just as filling. I would never have guessed you use chocolate as a secret ingredient – i’ll have to try that out next time!

    Monica / Mocha and Moccasins

  • Nothing beats a good chili! It’s like bolognese or spaghetti, everyone has their own take! I bet the cocoa makes it taste so rich.

    Silly Medley: Lifestyle and Travel

  • Yum, can’t wait to cook this! It’s winter here in Australia and I think this is just the thing needed to warm us up! Thanks for the recipe!

  • That chocolate looks great!

  • I’m about to start a juice cleanse, and I just so happen to stumble upon this article… I guess the cleanse is going to have to wait another day! xx

  • This looks so good…

  • Rakhi Karlsson

    Hi Rosie! I’m making friday-chilli instead of sunday-chilli (right at this moment) to surprise y boyfriend when he gets home. It smells fantastic! Thank you for the inspiration 🙂 Just one question, at how many degrees do you have the oven? I don’t think the instructions say?

    Have a fantastic weekend!

    Best wishes, Rakhi

  • I love chili. Making it for the weekend is my favorite. Then we can eat on it anytime without taking time away from the family to cook. Or we’ll do a big chili bar with friends. We’ll serve two different kinds of chili with every topping you could want. (my secret ingredient is brown sugar and cinnamon…but I think I might have to add a pinch of chocolate next time)
    Cant wait to see what you whip up next!


  • Emma and Emily

    This looks absolutely amazing! I make a really good vegan chilli and like adding coco to add more flavour. Might try out the meat version now.

    Emily x

  • Sammie Foster

    This looks delicious! I’m kind of looking forward to colder weather again just so I can start cooking more “winter meals”.


    Little Blonde Life –
    Lifestyle Blog

  • Looks amazing! I also add a pinch of cinnamon to my chili for an added “hm, what is that?!” type of flavor – so delicious!

    xO Kristen

  • I love these types of meals – hearty, satisfying to the tummy and great marinading until the next day also! I’m going to have to try some chocolate in my next mix!

    Lauren x

    Britton Loves | Lifestyle Food Beauty

  • Nathailieee

    Wow, such a lovely photos and recipe. I looove chili and not only for a Sunday 🙂

    My recipe is very similar but I also add few herb AND coffee 🙂 yum yum yum

  • Chilli and curry – the two dishes which ALWAYS taste better the next day!
    Would have never thought to put chocolate in the dish, must try it! xo

  • I will have to look for that chocolate. I have tried others that have not worked so well.

  • Miss Valentina

    I tried it and loved it! You have amazingly delicious food tips and receipts on your blog!

  • I LOVE chili and am all about the slow cook – it has to cook for hours. Never tried chocolate though so will be sure to give that a whirl 🙂 Lots of love, Andrea xxx

    Andrea’s Passions

  • Callie Hagdorn

    I cooked this tonight for dinner, and Rosie!! You must have the stomach of steel! It was soooo spicy! Don’t get me wrong it was delicious! The chocolate made it so rich and tasty! But next time I think I’ll halve the chilli flakes.. Thanks for sharing! Xx

  • You captured the recipe too close, I smell the aroma! Haha. Well, I like your healthy recipe and I would like to try

    xoxo, Samantha@ Virtual Hypnotherapy

  • Thanks for sharing this yummy food recipe ! I loved it ! Its just amazing !!