This bison chili may well be the best chili you’ve ever tasted. This is like no other chili you’ve had before! Lean, iron-rich bison is cooked low and slow in dark red wine with several layers of spices, bulgur, and fiber-rich black beans to create a healthy and delicious dinner!
I’ve made a number of variations of chili in my time. I’ve blogged a few of them… Sweet ‘n Spicy Bratwurst Chili, Turkey Chili Cornbread Skillet, and Turkey Chili Con Frijoles. I’ve made chili with lots of different proteins, and different cuts of those proteins. Ground meat chili, like in this bison chili recipe, is the most popular up here in the northern part of the U.S., while the gang down in the southern half of the U.S. tend to favor big pieces of meat in their bowl.
There’s pretty much a chili for every taste bud out there, too. Turkey, beef, and even lamb have all made their way into my chili bowls, but there’s something very special AND very healthy, about using bison. This bison chili is proof of that!
FOOD FACTS ~ BISON (facts gathered from the National Bison Association)
THE ANIMAL: Bison are handled as little as possible. They spend their lives on grass, much as they always have, with very little time in the feedlot. They are not subjected to questionable drugs, chemicals or hormones. The members of the National Bison Association feel so strongly about this that they have a resolution opposing the use of these substances in the production of Bison for meat.
NUTRITION: Bison is a lean, and highly nutrient dense food because of the proportion of protein, fat, mineral, and fatty acids to its caloric value. Comparisons to other meat sources have also shown that Bison has a greater concentration of iron, as well as some of the essential fatty acids necessary for human well being.
Readers’ Digest magazine has even listed bison as one of the five foods women should eat because of the high iron content. I, along with an estimated 3 million Americans, suffer from iron deficient Anemia. Eating iron-rich foods is very important to keeping red blood cells and oxygen flowing through our bodies, so bison is high up on my list of foods to consume often. The fact that it’s delicious makes it more of a win-win for my body, and for yours, too!
Oh, and another great iron-rich recipe is spinach, which many people turn their noses up at. Not me…Bring on the rich, creamy creamed spinach!
Because of its high nutritional value and special handling methods, bison is somewhat expensive. If you don’t know yet, I’m definitely not the richest kid on the block. As a matter of fact, my grocery budget is just $40 a week, but purchasing quality foods like this helps keep Brian and I healthy, saving us money on medical costs, so for me, it’s worth the investment.
ABOUT THIS BISON CHILI RECIPE:
This bison chili recipe isn’t one that can be made in 15 minutes like my bratwurst chili can, but that’s just because there are some layers of love that need time to incorporate together in the pot.
Instead of beef stock, I used red wine as the base flavor. Why? Because if you were eating an expensive cut of steak, you might want a glass of red wine to compliment it…. the wine brings out the flavor of the meat in a way that a simple glass of water can’t. It’s the same story here. If you completely abstain from alcohol, substitute some organic, no-salt-added beef stock and you’ll be in for a fantastic treat.