We've got news for you.

Register on TimesLIVE at no cost to receive newsletters, read exclusive articles & more.
Register now

Beat the cold with an easy chilli con carne soup

Chilli and chocolate are the secret to this hearty, warming soup

28 April 2022 - 11:27
Speedy chilli con carne soup.
Speedy chilli con carne soup.
Image: Ryno

This is one of my favourite soup recipes — it’s rich, dark and filling with lots of different textures and tastes as if you’ve spent hours making it.

The beauty of it is that it is served with warm bread, toast or even flatbread, making it a filling supper. If you prefer you can omit the chilli though it does warm the cockles of the heart.


Serves: 4-6


1 large onion, chopped

2 cloves of garlic, crushed

15ml (1 tbsp) oil

250g beef mince

1 x 400g can red kidney beans drained and rinsed

1 x 400g chopped tomatoes (or use a can of Mexican-flavoured tomatoes for extra bite)

1 litre beef stock

A pinch of dried chillies — or more to taste

Salt and black pepper

4 squares of dark chocolate or 15ml (1 tbsp) cocoa powder dissolved in 30ml (2 tbsp) hot water

To serve:

Fresh coriander 


  1. Fry the onion and garlic in oil. Increase the heat and fry the mince until brown.
  2. Stir in the beans, tomatoes, stock and chillies. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat to a gentle simmer and cook for 30-40 minutes stirring from time to time.
  3. Season to taste, add the chocolate or cocoa and cook for a further 15 minutes over a low heat.
  4. Garnish with coriander and serve with flatbread, bread or toast.

Support independent journalism by subscribing to the Sunday Times. Just R20 for the first month.


Would you like to comment on this article or view other readers' comments? Register (it’s quick and free) or sign in now.

Speech Bubbles

Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.