Both John.e and McKenna love chili, so this Cheesy Chili Macaroni was right up their alley. Me? Well, I’m not a huge fan of chili, but I am at the same time. Let me explain…
For some odd reason, I cannot stand the taste of cumin. Yet, both John.e and McKenna love it. So, I usually cook for their tastes anyway, and added it to this recipe. If I were making this for myself, I’d completely leave it out! If there are three things in the food world that I cannot bring myself to like the taste of, it’s cumin, cilantro, and olives. If I were ever in a situation where I was being forced to divulge sensitive information, I’d completely cave and spill the beans if one of those food items were introduced to the negotiation process. #truestory
I must confess though, I did taste this chili – one cannot properly cook without tasting! That is the sacrifice I make to bring you, Dear Reader, recipes like this! You’re most welcome! It was actually quite delicious. I think the pasta and the cheese diffused the flavour of the cumin. Hey, that works for me!
I absolutely love how the pasta cooked up in this dish! It wasn’t overcooked at all and took on the flavour of the chili. This was certainly a win!
This dish was the result of back to school weeknight dinner research, which resulted in foods that I could cook ahead of time and freeze. It makes weeknight dinner easier, especially when both John.e and I work full time and McKenna is one of those genius students who pours her heart and soul into homework. I love that about her!
Whenever I make freezer meals, I’ll portion out enough for the three of us and when I feel like having that particular dish for dinner, I’ll take it out of the freezer and place it in the refrigerator before I leave for work in the morning. When I arrive home, it’s just a matter of tossing it in a skillet and heating it through. Life is best when it’s easy, right?
We are learning all kinds of shortcuts now that McKenna is living with us. Hey, here’s a thought… maybe I should blog about that! I’ll store that idea in my blog book for future use. In the meantime, you go make a pot of this Cheesy Chili Macaroni and make weeknight dinners fuss-free at your home too!
Cheesy Chili Macaroni
- 1 large onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 3 cups jarred pasta sauce
- 28 ounces canned whole tomatoes, roughly chopped
- 19 ounces canned red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 19 ounces canned black beans, drained and rinsed
- 3 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon coriander
- 450 grams macaroni, uncooked
- 4 cups water
- 2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded (plus more for garnish)
- sour cream, for garnish
In a large Dutch oven, add the olive oil and onions. Cook until the onions are tender. Add the garlic and cook for another two minutes.
Add the pasta sauce, tomato paste, canned tomatoes, chili powder, cumin, coriander, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine and simmer for 45 minutes.
Add the kidney and black beans. Stir to combine and simmer for 15 minutes.
Add in the water and the pasta. Stir and cover. Simmer for 15 minutes. Check the pasta for doneness. Depending on the pasta brand you use, it might take a minute or two longer. Just don’t add any more water, unless you’d prefer a soupier chili. You run the risk of overcooking the pasta if you add more liquid.
Once the pasta is cooked, turn off the heat and stir through the cheddar cheese.
Serve immediately with more cheddar, scallions, and sour cream for garnish.