Beef & Pinto Bean Chili with Cheddar Cornbread Topping

Beef & Pinto Bean Chili

with Cheddar Cornbread Topping

55 MIN
4 Servings
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From the Test Kitchen

We’re kicking off autumn with one of our favorite cool-weather staples: savory, smoky chili. Creamy pinto beans and spiced beef, simmered together in a tangy tomato sauce, deliver all the comforting flavors of the dish. For a classic touch, we’re also baking a cornbread-inspired topping on top. Tangy fromage blanc (a creamy fresh cheese) adds cooling contrast when drizzled over it all.

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  • Nutrition
    PER SERVING
  • Calories
    830 Cals (est.)
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tips & techniques
Prepare the ingredients:
1 Prepare the ingredients:

Remove the honey from the refrigerator to bring to room temperature. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Wash and dry the fresh produce. Peel and roughly chop the garlic. Cut off and discard the root ends of the scallions. Cut the white bottoms into ½-inch pieces and thinly slice the green tops, keeping them separate. Grate the cheese on the large side of a box grater. Drain and rinse the beans.

Start the chili:
2 Start the chili:

In a large pan (oven-safe, if you have one), heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the ground beef; season with salt and pepper. Cook, frequently breaking the meat apart with a spoon, 4 to 5 minutes, or until browned and cooked through. Add the garlic, spice blend, and white bottoms of the scallions; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 3 minutes, or until softened and fragrant.

Make the batter:
3 Make the batter:

While the beef cooks, in a medium bowl, combine the grits, baking blend, egg, honey (kneading the packet before opening), 1 tablespoon of olive oil, and ¼ cup of water. Season with salt and pepper. Stir to thoroughly combine. Gently fold in the cheese.

Finish the chili:
4 Finish the chili:

Add the beans, tomatoes, and 1 cup of water to the pan; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally and scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan, 8 to 9 minutes, or until slightly thickened and thoroughly combined. Turn off the heat. Season with salt and pepper to taste. (If your pan isn’t oven-safe, transfer the chili to a baking dish.)

Top & bake the chili:
5 Top & bake the chili:

Using a spoon, top the finished chili with equal-sized scoops of the batter, leaving some space between the scoops. Season with salt and pepper. Bake 17 to 19 minutes, or until the batter is set and cooked through. Remove from the oven. Let cool for at least 2 minutes before serving.

Serve your dish:
6 Serve your dish:

Garnish the baked chili with the green tops of the scallions. Serve with the fromage blanc on the side. Enjoy!

Tips from Home Chefs

1 Prepare the ingredients:

Remove the honey from the refrigerator to bring to room temperature. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Wash and dry the fresh produce. Peel and roughly chop the garlic. Cut off and discard the root ends of the scallions. Cut the white bottoms into ½-inch pieces and thinly slice the green tops, keeping them separate. Grate the cheese on the large side of a box grater. Drain and rinse the beans.

2 Start the chili:

In a large pan (oven-safe, if you have one), heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the ground beef; season with salt and pepper. Cook, frequently breaking the meat apart with a spoon, 4 to 5 minutes, or until browned and cooked through. Add the garlic, spice blend, and white bottoms of the scallions; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2 to 3 minutes, or until softened and fragrant.

Start the chili:
Make the batter:
3 Make the batter:

While the beef cooks, in a medium bowl, combine the grits, baking blend, egg, honey (kneading the packet before opening), 1 tablespoon of olive oil, and ¼ cup of water. Season with salt and pepper. Stir to thoroughly combine. Gently fold in the cheese.

4 Finish the chili:

Add the beans, tomatoes, and 1 cup of water to the pan; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally and scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan, 8 to 9 minutes, or until slightly thickened and thoroughly combined. Turn off the heat. Season with salt and pepper to taste. (If your pan isn’t oven-safe, transfer the chili to a baking dish.)

Finish the chili:
Top & bake the chili:
5 Top & bake the chili:

Using a spoon, top the finished chili with equal-sized scoops of the batter, leaving some space between the scoops. Season with salt and pepper. Bake 17 to 19 minutes, or until the batter is set and cooked through. Remove from the oven. Let cool for at least 2 minutes before serving.

6 Serve your dish:

Garnish the baked chili with the green tops of the scallions. Serve with the fromage blanc on the side. Enjoy!

Serve your dish:
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