Smoked Sausage Chili is hearty, well-seasoned comfort food.
This main dish pairs well with Homemade Self-Rising Cornbread.
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EDITOR’S NOTE (October 12, 2022): I posted this recipe for the first time on October 9, 2018 as 15 Bean Smoked Sausage Soup. The new name is Smoked Sausage Chili which better describes the dish.
DISCLOSURE (SPONSORED): In 2018, I made this main dish with a complimentary bag of 15 Bean Soup (Dry Beans) provided by Hurst’s Beans.
I have not been paid to endorse their beans nor any other pictured product. All comments are my own.
Recently, I worked on improving this recipe. Developed a new version that tastes better and is easier to make.
Beef smoked sausage, one can (14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes and chili powder. I used “No Salt Added” Diced Tomatoes because I had some in the pantry. Regular diced tomatoes will also work in this recipe.
Liquid Smoke is literally the smoke of burning hickory condensed and combined with spring water. It’s 100% natural seasoning which is excellent in this recipe. The classic chili flavor is courtesy of chili seasoning (stronger than chili powder).
Two cups of chopped onions not pictured.
Prepare 15 Bean Soup Dry Beans according to instructions printed on bag.
HOW TO SORT DRY BEANS
Never pour dry beans directly from the bag into the pot.
Dry beans are a natural agricultural product. Despite using modern cleaning equipment, foreign material and grains may get into the package.
They’re easy to inspect and sort. Simply pour dry beans into a large bowl or spread out on a flat surface.
Carefully search for foreign particles. Discard whatever you find.
HOW TO RINSE DRY BEANS
After inspecting, rinse thoroughly.
My favorite method is to place a colander in a large bowl… and sit both in the sink.
The bowl holds the rinse water which makes it easy to clean the beans.
The colander makes it easy to drain the water.
Just lift it up and the water drains out of it without dropping the beans.
The inspected/rinsed beans are ready for soaking.
SHOULD DRY BEANS BE SOAKED BEFORE SIMMERING ON STOVE?
YES. Soak dry beans before cooking to remove gas and to make them easier to digest. Plus, soaked beans cook much faster than dry beans.
Instructions for both Quick Soak and Overnight Soak (eight hours) are printed on the back of the bag. Both soaking methods are for beans that will be simmered in a pot on top of the stove.
According to hurstbeans.com (experts), dry beans do not have to be soaked if cooked in a slow cooker.
Check out my recipe for Crock Pot Pinto Beans.
PREPARATION TIPS FOR SMOKED SAUSAGE
First, rinse sausage (before slicing).
To decrease sodium, boil whole sausage for 2 minutes over medium heat.
To do this, place whole sausage in a medium saucepan.
Cover with water. Bring to a boil. Simmer 2 minutes over medium heat.
Discard water. Pat boiled sausage dry with paper towels. Set aside.
Warm 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil in a medium skillet over low-medium heat. Fry whole boiled sausage until brown on all sides.
Remove from skillet and drain on paper towels.
Slice or chop into small pieces.
HOW TO SIMMER THE BEANS
Simmer soaked/rinsed beans in water without meat.
When they are tender (not mushy), add remaining ingredients.
The beans will absorb the delicious seasonings.
Tastes even better after 24 hours in the fridge.
To obtain calories and nutritional information by weight, visit popular online nutritional calculator myfitnesspal.com.
Copy recipe link in the address bar and add it to their calculator.
No need to type each ingredient.
Smoked Sausage Chili
- 1 package (20 ounces) 15 Bean Ham Soup (Dry Beans) I used Hurst's Ham Beens Brand.
- 2 cups onions chopped and sauteed
- 1 can (14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes
- 1-1/2 tablespoons Liquid Smoke divided
- 1 packet (1.25 ounces) chili seasoning Stronger than chili powder.
- 1/4 teaspoon salt More or less as preferred.
- 1/4 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper More or less as preferred.
- 1 package (12 ounces) smoked sausage
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil use to lightly fry sausage
- Sort, soak and cook dry beans on the stovetop according to instructions printed on the bag. Save the seasoning packet to use later.
- Place prepared beans in large pot. Cover with water.
- Simmer over low-medium heat WITHOUT LID. Watch closely. Foam (aka gas) may appear on top of the water 5 to 7 minutes after the beans begin to boil. Use a large spoon to skim off the foam. Discard.
- Cover pot with lid. Simmer over low-medium heat until desired tenderness. Add more water if necessary.
- After beans reach desired tenderness, DRAIN SOUP into a heat proof container or smaller pot. Save to use later. Leave beans in the pot. Set aside.
- Rinse sausage and place in a medium skillet. Cover with water.
- Simmer 3 minutes to decrease sodium. Discard sodium water.
- Use a thick towel to wipe skillet dry. Use paper towels to wipe boiled sausage dry.
- Drizzle 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil in the skillet. Add sausage links. Cook over low-medium heat until sides are lightly browned (2-3 minutes).
- Chop into small pieces. Pour into pot with cooked beans.
- Add sauteed onions, diced tomatoes, sprinkle in ham seasoning packet, 1 tablespoon of Liquid Smoke, 1 teaspoon of chili seasoning (not chili powder), salt to taste and coarse ground black pepper to taste. Add 1/4 cup of BEAN SOUP. If you prefer thinner chili, add more soup until satisfied. Stir lightly to combine.
- Simmer 7 minutes.
- Taste a cooled sample. If desired, add another 1/2 teaspoon of chili seasoning (not chili powder) and 1/2 teaspoon of Liquid Smoke. Stir until well combined. Taste again. Add more seasonings if desired.
- Serve hot.
5 thoughts on “Smoked Sausage Chili”
When do you add the onion in this recipe?
Hi Karla! Onion added in Step #7. My apologies for the error. Thank you VERY much for asking.
Thanks so much…
I agree! 🙂
Thank you for sharing this recipe.
I just want to share…
To my chili I add some “sofrito,” or cooked vegetables finely chopped or ground in the food processor. Sofrito means it includes “culantro,” not to be mistaken with “cilantro.” It’s hard to find, usually sold at Asian markets. So, let’s say, “sofrito” minus culantro. I also leave the peppers out, but do include them in other dishes.
In large food processor, place 2 bunches of cilantro, 2 yellow onions (or red onions), 1 to 2 cups of peeled garlic cloves, culantro (if available), and this is something I learned to do in the last few years, add a 15 ounce can of diced tomatoes. I used to literally use fresh tomatoes. Not necessary. Grind until desired consistency. Instead of adding cut tomatoes, you may grind without tomatoes, and just add crushed tomatoes when cooking.
In non-stick pot or pan, add 2 Tbsp of vegetable oil. Fully cook the ground herbs and vegetables from the food processor, and season with ground oregano, black pepper, and some cumin. I never add salt. Add as much, or as little to your chili as you’d like. Your chili or beans will never be the same.
You may tweak the list of these ingredients in any way you’d like for any dish desired. You may add celery, bell peppers (or any peppers) of any color, including jalapeños or spicy peppers, green onions…
I usually save the rest of these cooked “sofrito” in an empty, recycled marinara sauce bottle (32 Oz type), and when time permits, make a second batch, fresh, raw, without cooking it, and store it in my fridge. I sometimes add some cooked, together with some uncooked “sofrito” to my chili, beans, soups, rice, etc… I even use the uncooked version in scrambled eggs.
I make “an Italian version” and use parsley instead of cilantro, and add it to my made from scratch marinara sauce, or to store bought marinara sauce. It just enhances the flavors of whatever you add it to. Enjoy!
Culantro vs Cilantro: