What can you eat with chili? Well, a better question is, how adventurous are you? There are so many variations. You could stick with tried and true toppings and sides, like cheese and cornbread. But if you're willing to try something new or unusual, here's how to take chili to the next level.
Top It Off
Spice things up by topping chili with chopped jalapenos or hot chili peppers.
Add savory flavor with a handful of chopped bacon, or get a little fancy and use fried pancetta.
Top chili with a few cloves of roasted garlic.
Crumble hash browns over to create a dish reminiscent of chili cheese fries.
Crush your favorite potato or corn chips over the chili.
Instead of plain sour cream, add a dollop of crème fraîche or yogurt and mint sauce.
Pour It On
Chili can be enjoyed as a hearty sauce on many traditional foods.
Pour it over French fries and top with shredded cheese.
Fill up a baked potato with chili.
Pour it over hot dogs or sausage for chili dogs.
Eat chili over a bowl of white or brown rice.
Enjoy it with other grains like bulgur, barley, or cooked lentils.
Serve it over pasta, also known as Cincinnati-style.
Pair It With Bread
Cornbread is a perennial favorite to serve with chili. Take it up a notch by adding jalapenos to the batter or adding honey for extra sweet cornbread.
Serve chili in a bread bowl—a sure crowd-pleaser.
For an elevated version of sloppy joe sandwiches, serve the chili between hamburger buns.
Lighten It Up
If you want to lighten up a hearty chili, serve it with salad greens like spinach, romaine, or kale with light, oil-based dressing.
For a more interesting spin, make a cabbage salad with red and green shredded cabbage, carrots, and thinly sliced apples, and serve with an apple-cider vinaigrette.
Make a cold corn salad, combining cooked corn with cherry tomatoes, onions, olive, and vinegar. Place in the refrigerator until fully chilled.
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- Mel's Kitchen Cafe: Summer Corn Salad
- The Kitchn: Side Dish Recipe for Chili: Apple Cabbage Salad with Cider Viniagrette