Crunchy Taco Chili
A long lost variation of this recipe marks the very first time I found a recipe on Pinterest and made it. Isn’t that sweet? I had lived in Virginia for about one year and was still not settled into my role as a real housewife. Even though I’d been cooking for 15 years, I’d lost my motivation.
Jon and I moved like 4 times before our second anniversary, and I went for long periods of time without cooking at all. Between the moves, the 3 little kids, the small kitchens, and Jon’s hellish work schedule, cooking was not something I was confident doing anymore.
Once I found Pinterest (and the “art” of Crock Pot cooking), my life changed. I learned tons of standard techniques like how to make a basic casserole, soup, how to braise, deglaze, bake, incorporate foreign ingredients into familiar dishes…the list is endless. Although I had a background in cooking from my brief time as a chef-in-training and from my years working at various restaurants, becoming a successful home cook for a family on a budget is a whole different animal.
You can’t just cook what you want anymore, price is definitely an object, and you must learn how to manage your time and cook ahead. After all, I may not get hungry until 9, but my kids need to eat by 6:30 to stay on schedule. Add that to checking homework, breaking up fights, and making sure Ben isn’t swallowing Legos…well, you have got to figure out what works for you in the kitchen unless you want Kraft box dinners and frozen pizzas all the time (which is actually what I did for about 9 months when we all lived in Texas).
So here I am, 5 ½ years into marriage, and I finally feel good enough about my skills as a cook, a mom, a wife, and a maid to not only cook interesting food for my family 4-5 nights per week…but I’m actually confident and organized enough to document it. I never would have believed that if someone told me back then.
But it all had to start somewhere, right? So here it is, the current version of my first slow cooker dish, my first Pinterest experiment, and the beginning of the home cooking I do today. I call this Crunchy Taco Chili because it tastes best with tons of tortilla chips crushed up in it.
Total Time: 8 hours
Difficulty Level: Easy
1 large onion, medium diced
3-4 raw boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 tablespoon chili powder
2 teaspoons cumin
2 teaspoons chipotle powder
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon coriander
1 can whole kernel corn with liquid
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can dark kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 can light kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 16 ounce can diced tomatoes
1 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
8 ounces salsa Verde
8 ounces red salsa
- Add all the ingredients to the slow cooker in the order listed.
- Cook on high for 6 hours.
- Pull the chicken out and shred it. I find it easiest to hold it still with closed tongs and use a fork to shred it.
- Put the chicken back in the slow cooker, and cook for one more hour.
- Serve hot with sour cream, hot sauce, and lots of tortilla chips.