Recipe Friday: Canna Chili and Kathy’s Corncakes


This is my go-to chili, easy and tasty. It’s perfect for those cold winter nights, and for those hurry-up-and-feed-me times when there are more important things to do (like opening presents or getting the kids to bed). It’s called Canna Chili because I toss in a “can a’ this and a can a’ that.” The recipe doubles or triples easily. This can be made and eaten right away; or you can put it in a slow cooker on low to wait for hours; or you can reheat it for delicious leftovers another day. It goes great with cornbread (I’ve provided a recipe, following. Jiffy makes a nice box mix, too.).

This recipe does not include salt or pepper. First, I’m allergic to pepper. Second, it hasn’t needed any salt, but my husband sprinkles some into his. Shake away to your taste.

This is a mild chili. You can kick it up any way you like with more chili powder, hotter chilis, or whatever peppers your taste buds and sweat glands love.

One more note: If you’ve got some shredded zucchini you want to sneak in for nutrition, this is a good recipe to dump it into.

Canna Chili


  • 1 pound ground meat of choice
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 heaping tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 4.5 oz can mild chopped green chilies
  • 1 15 oz can tomato sauce
  • 1 15 oz can tomato puree or chopped/diced tomatoes
  • 1 15 oz can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder (adjust amount to taste)

Optional toppings:

  • Sour cream
  • Salsa
  • Chopped onions or scallions
  • Corn chips (I like Fritos Scoops, so I can scoop the chili like a dip) or Doritos, crushed or whole
  • Shredded cheese
  • Black olives (whole, chopped, or sliced)
  • Guacamole or sliced avocado
  • Fresh cilantro
  • Pickled jalapeños


  1. In a 3-quart saucepan or Dutch oven, brown ground meat over medium-high heat. Add the onion along with the meat. When meat is two minutes from being done, stir in the garlic.
  2. Dump in the green chilies, tomato sauce, tomato puree, beans, and chili powder. Stir well.
  3. Heat to simmer.
  4. Serve immediately with optional toppings, or simmer for hours in a slow cooker. Or, put the filled Dutch oven into a 200° oven to keep warm.

Kathy’s Corncakes

Serves: 6

These make small johnny cakes. If you prefer, pour batter into muffin liners and bake in a muffin tin; or pour batter into a pie plate.
The batter thickens quickly after mixing, but it works well for frying up any size corncake you want.
If the griddle is too hot, make sure you watch the cook time, so they don’t burn.
These freeze well. I layer between parchment paper.

Yield: 12 cakes
Prep Time: 20 min
Cook Time: 6 minutes fry time each


2 1/2 cups               stone-ground cornmeal

1 1/2 teaspoons     baking powder

1/2 teaspoon          baking soda

1/4 cup                    palm coconut sugar or other sweetener

1 teaspoon             salt

1 1/2 cups               buttermilk *

2                               eggs **

4 tablespoons        melted butter or coconut oil



  1. Blend dry ingredients together.
    2. In a separate bowl, whisk together wet ingredients.
    3. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients; stir just until combined. Batter will be thick. (If too thick, thin with a little more buttermilk.)
    4. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. For each corncake, spoon 1/4 cup batter onto hot skillet, and cook 3 minutes per side.
    Makes 12 little ones or 4-5 big ones.

[Alternate: Pour batter to fill paper muffin liners ¾ full and bake 20 min at 400°. (Makes 12 – 14 muffins)]

[Other alternate: pour batter into a greased pie plate and bake 20 min at 400°.]

* As a substitute, measure 1 tablespoon lemon juice or vinegar into measuring cup; fill with the 1 1/2 cups of milk.
** or 3 tsp Enr-G egg replacer with 4 T water


4 thoughts on “Recipe Friday: Canna Chili and Kathy’s Corncakes

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