Between military P.T. and Jujitsu Tournaments, the guys around here are often mindful of what they eat. This happens to be one of those times and I’ll confess…it wouldn’t hurt me one bit to be mindful at the moment.

Chili is one of those things that you can cook and use for “planned-overs”. That’s what my mom calls it. We make a huge pot of chili mostly because we usually have a house full of people–but also because small portions can be re-heated for the next couple of days, packed in a lunch, or frozen for later.

Here’s a healthy, easy recipe that people around here love. Chili shouldn’t be complicated so the hardest work this recipe requires is the chopping of vegetables and the browning of meat.

To help eliminate excess sodium, put the beans into a colander and rinse well with cold water before adding them to the other ingredients. No extra salt will be added because the canned tomatoes have more than enough.

You will need:

An 8 quart stock pot or Dutch oven

3 packages of ground turkey, browned

1 large onion (or 2 small), chopped

1 large red bell pepper (or 2 small), chopped

1 large green bell pepper (or 2 small), chopped

That will be the most labor-intensive step. Brown the ground turkey. Sauté the onion, red, and green bell peppers in about 2 Tbsp olive oil in a skillet. When they are all cooked, put veggies and meat into a stock pot and add:

1 can Del Monte Zesty Chili Style Tomatoes (diced)

1 can Del Monte Zesty Mild Green Chili Tomatoes (diced)

1 can Del Monte Zesty Jalapeno Tomatoes (petite diced)

1 can Del Monte Mexican Recipe Tomatoes (stewed)

1 can Northern Beans (don’t forget to put in colander and rinse with cold water)

1 can Black Beans (rinsed)

1 can Pinto Beans w/jalapenos (rinsed)

1 can Ranch Style Beans (I don’t rinse this one)

All canned goods are 15 ounces, give or take. Be careful not to strain yourself while opening the cans.

Refine the flavor with:

Fresh garlic, minced (1 or 2 tsp)

Chili Powder (about 2 tsp)

Roasted ground cumin (about 1 tsp)

Cocoa powder. Yes. Cocoa powder. (about 1 tsp)

Brown sugar. Trust me. (about 1 tsp)

Chipotle Tabasco (about 2 tsp)

¼ cup jalapenos, chopped (optional)

Simmer on low heat for about 45 minutes, stirring frequently. If you won’t be facing the dreaded military tape measure or weigh-in-scale, you can serve this over tortilla chips, topped with shredded Colby-jack cheese. If you must toe the line, this chili is awesome without anything extra.