Slow-Cooker Grass-fed Chili with Gluten-free Cheesy Grit and Chive Muffins!

IMG_0198It may be the middle of the summer, but I still crave a nice bowl of chili! What makes this chili special is the use of the Slow-Cooker to keep the kitchen cool on those hot days!

Ok, that’s not the only thing that makes this chili special, there’s a few more details. One, is the use of an odd ingredient to give it a nice sweetness to balance all of the savory. It’s Organic Strawberry Preserves! What better time to use what you’ve got from your local farm. Any variety will do, and it’s especially nice to use a preserve that is in season. It’s strawberry time here, so that’s what I used. Now if you don’t have any preserves or jam, you can use a nice local maple syrup or honey for the sweetness.

Fire-roasted Tomatoes give additional sweet and smokey flavor to the chili, and I always try to use them in any recipe That calls for tomatoes.

The poppable Cheese Grit and Chive Muffins may be Mini but they stand up and are the perfect accompaniment to this chili. Bonus that they are gluten-free! They could be served at any meal or as a snack. Now that’s a Muffin I can stand behind!


Grass-fed Chili

  • 1 lb Grass-fed Ground Beef
  • 2 Cans of Fire Roasted Tomatoes (BPA-free cans)
  • 1 Can or Pouch of Organic Dark Red Kidney Beans ( BPA-free)
  • 1 Organic Onion diced
  • 1/4 Cup Organic Strawberry Preserves (any variety preserves, honey or maple can be used)
  • 1 Tbs Cumin
  • 1 Tbs Chili Powder
  • 1 Tsp Garlic Powder
  • Sea Salt and Pepper to taste

Brown ground beef in a sauté pan, add onion and spices, and cook until softened. Add ground beef mixture to the Slow-Cooker,  and stir in the beans, tomatoes and preserves. Cook on low 6 hours, or high 3 hours.

Cheesey Grit and Chive Muffins

  • 1 Cup non-gmo Grits
  • 1 Cup gluten-free All-Purpose Flour ( I used Bob’s Red Mill)
  • 1 Cup of Milk of choice
  • 1/4 Cup Oil of choice ( Extra Virgin Olive, Organic Red Palm, Extra Virgin Coconut are great choices!)
  • 1 Organic or Local  Pasture- Raised Egg, beaten
  • 1 Cup of Shredded Cheese of Choice (Cheddar is traditionally used in Grits but use what you like or what you have on hand. It will give a unique flavor with different cheeses. I used a mix of Provolone and American)
  • 1/4 Cup Maple Syrup
  • 1 Tbs Fresh Chives
  • 2 Tsp Baking Powder
  • 1/2 Tsp Sea Salt
  • Fresh Cracked Black Pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Combine the grits, flour, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Add the beaten egg, milk, oil,  maple, and combine. Fold in the cheese, chives and black pepper.

You can use muffin liners in your tins or go without, it’s totally your preference. If you go without, you may want to lightly grease them with oil of your choice.

I used mini muffin tins and got 36 out of this batter. Fill the tins and bake for 15 minutes or until tops are golden and toothpick comes out clean.

Buon Appetito!

~Sara~Fresh Foodie Mama


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