By the cup or bowl, wouldn’t this be a good weekend to knock back some chili? (Deb Lindsey for The Washington post)

Chilly = chili! The season’s upon us, when a hot bowlful with crushed crackers on top just soothes the soul. With more than 18 million Google hits for “chili recipes,” what’s going to make you click, scroll and print?

What all good chili recipes should have in common is dried chilies, for starters. While it’s easy to reach for the ground chili powder, sprinkling in that stuff along with other spices can make the result gritty — which is a phenomenon you might have gotten so used to that you don’t even notice.

The best recommendation/retrofit for just about any recipe you tackle comes from J. Kenji López-Alt, circa 2010 Serious Eats, whose new cookbook, “The Food Lab,” is on track to figure at the top of many best-of-the-year lists. To elminate the grit problem, he cooks dried chilies (preferably a mix of fruity and smoky ones; here’s a guide) in stock until they’re soft, then purees them until smooth (maybe add some sauce from a can of chipotles en adobo as well).

Now, we happen to have a fine variety of chili dishes in our Recipe Finder, so you don’t have to spend your lunch hour drilling down through the millions. Pick the category that appeals to you right now; if you can make a batch and let it cure in the refrigerator for a day, it’ll taste even better.

But first . . . .

Top recipes of the week

The ones you viewed most in our Recipe Finder online sure look like fall:

1. Skirt Steak Pinwheels. A few tweaks to a Rachael Ray recipe and there you have it — Dinner in 25 Minutes. Meaty, but not so much meat.

2. Deconstructed Cabbage Rolls. The best parts, done casserole-style, from cookbook author Leanne Brown and Weeknight Vegetarian.

3. Anthony Bourdain’s Boeuf Bourguignon. Perennial fave.

4. Kale and Chickpea Stew. Another Dinner in Minutes; this one’s meatless.

5. Apple-Ginger Phyllo Turnovers. Guilt-free, from Ellie Krieger’s Nourish column.

And now, pick your chili:


(Deb Lindsey for The Washington Post)

Dark Pot Roast Chili

Smoky Texas Chili

Chili Con Carne


(Deb Lindsey for The Washington Post)

White Bean Chicken Chili

Jimtown’s Three-Bean Vegetable Chili

Sirloin and Black Bean Chili


(James M. Thresher for The Washington Post)

Kim Chili

Spicy White Bean and Pork Tenderloin Chili



Pumpkin Chicken Chili

Jalapeno Turkey Black Bean Chili With Crisped Potatoes


(Deb Lindsey/For the Washington Post)

Paneer and Butternut Squash Kashmiri Chili

Chili Verde

What’s your favorite thing to add to chili? Share in the comments below.