For A Thick And Hearty Chili, Stir In Some Blended Beans

When creating the perfect chili, everyone has their secret ingredient or method. But if you're looking for a way to make your meal thick, hearty, and incredibly satisfying, you should consider one simple trick — blending beans into your chili. This approach not only adds a rich texture but also enhances the flavor and nutritional value of your dish. 

According to Healthline, beans are loaded with protein, fiber, carbohydrates, and minerals. When blended, the legumes also release their natural starches, which have thickening properties. This process turns them into a creamy, rich paste, ideal for adding body and texture to your chili. Unlike some thickeners that might dilute the taste or add unwanted chemicals, blended beans complement the existing flavors.

Moreover, they are versatile. Whether you prefer the mild taste of black beans, the robustness of kidney beans, or the classic touch of pinto beans, each variety brings its unique flavor and texture to your meal. This versatility allows for endless experimentation, enabling you to customize your chili to suit your palate.

How to prepare blended beans for your chili

To begin, select your preferred type of beans, keeping in mind the overall flavor profile of your meal. Once you've chosen, it's time to prepare them. If you're using a canned version, ensure they're drained and rinsed to remove excess sodium. For those starting with dry beans, cook them until they're tender. And if you are using the same type you have in your chili, just remember to reserve about one cup at the beginning before adding the rest to the chili mixture.

Now, blend the beans in a blender or food processor with some liquid. This can be water, broth, or even a bit of the chili itself. The goal is to create a smooth, thick paste. Achieving the right consistency is key — you're aiming for a texture that's thick enough to add body to your dish but not so dense that it becomes difficult to blend and incorporate it.

Now, it's time to stir this bean paste into your chili. The best time to do this is after it's been simmering and all the other ingredients like your onions or ground beef are cooked through. Gently fold the blended beans into the pot, making sure they're thoroughly mixed in. You'll notice the chili start to thicken almost immediately. Allow to simmer for some time and once satisfied with the consistency, your delicious meal is ready to serve.