I can’t believe it’s week six of Sal’s store-cupboard cook-in – where does the time go? This cook-along recipe video series started when the supermarket shelves were much emptier than usual, to help keep your weight loss on track with tasty Free meals that used simple ingredients you most likely had in your kitchen already. With social distancing still in place, we’re all keen to keep our shopping trips to a minimum, and Sal’s store-cupboard cook-ins are one way that we can help.
Classic spag bol, a vegetarian chilli, easy chicken curry, ‘anything goes’ frittata and leftover roast chicken fajitas are the dishes that we’ve cooked with chef Sal, who’s socially distancing at her sister’s house and so has some willing camerawomen to call on (her nieces armed with their mobile phones!). This week, we bring you a one-pan family favourite, which uses only one fresh ingredient to help you stay away from the shops for as long as possible.
On the menu this week is a Slimming World chilli con carne. Sal tells us more…
“Chilli con carne has long been one of my favourites, as it’s a relatively cheap dish that can easily be scaled up to feed a large group – and now that I’ve found this Free Slimming World version, it’s even higher on my go-to list! I’ll often make four times as much as I need of this recipe, then freeze the spare portions for another time. Batch cooking is an easy way to keep Food Optimising on busy days, and I personally think this chilli con carne tastes even better once the flavours have had time to develop. Just make sure you write on your freezer bag, so you know what’s in it (unless you enjoy a freezer pot luck!) and reheat until piping hot.
This chilli con carne recipe is also super versatile, which means that you can batch cook and enjoy it the same week, without feeling like you’re having the same meal. It’s traditional to serve with plain boiled rice, which is also Free on the Slimming World plan. Or you can fill a jacket potato – another Free favourite, and the chilli is so tasty that I never feel the need to add butter. If you’re feeling more adventurous, you could use it to fill a taco shell (Slimming World members can use the Food Search tool online or on the app to quickly check Syn values) or, to get plenty of green on your plate, use lettuce leaves as wraps.”
Sal’s top chilli con carne tips
- Beans means versatility! This recipe uses mixed and baked beans, but you can use just one of these – or add in another type of canned beans, such as kidney, cannellini or black eye beans instead. It’s great for using up whatever’s in your cupboard.
- No fresh onion? Frozen onion, leeks or spring onions work just as well.
- Out of tinned tomatoes? You can use passata instead. If you have fresh tomatoes, chopping and adding these will give the dish more texture.
- Cooking the spices and tomato purée for 30 seconds really helps to bring out their flavour for a really delicious end result.
- If you prefer a smokier flavour, using smoked paprika instead of regular will do the trick.
- You can use defrosted frozen mince to make this chilli, making it a great store-cupboard and freezer dish for those days when you can’t get to the shops.
- I love to serve my chilli con carne with a dollop of fat-free natural yogurt and a sprinkling of sliced spring onions. This adds a touch of freshness to a really satisfying dish.
- This mixed bean chilli from week two of our cook-in is a great vegetarian alternative.
Sal’s Slimming World chilli con carne
ready in 45 minutes
What you need:
1 large onion, chopped
500g lean beef mince (5% fat or less)
2 tbsp mild chilli powder
2 tbsp paprika
2 tbsp tomato purée
400g can mixed beans
415g can baked beans in tomato sauce
400g can chopped tomatoes
198g can sweetcorn
2 x beef stock cubes
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
What you do:
1. Add the chopped onion and mince to a large non-stick frying pan and cook over a medium heat for 4-5 minutes until the beef is browned.
2. Add the spices and tomato purée and cook for 1-2 minutes.
3. Add the beans, tomatoes, sweetcorn, stock cubes and Worcestershire sauce and mix well.
4. Add some water if needed, turn the heat to low and simmer for 30-40 minutes until cooked through. Serve hot, with plain boiled rice and your favourite veg or salad.
Slimming World members have access to over 1,000 easy-to-make recipes on the website and app, as well as a handy Food Search tool to make meal planning easy. Add to that the support of an expert Consultant and the welcoming Slimming World community, and you’ll have all you need to set you up for a successful weight loss journey.
Please join in with the cook-along and let us know how you get on – we’d love to see what you’re creating, how you’ve made it work for you and the ingredients you’ve got. And you can share your pics on social media, too, using #EatWellAtHome.