Bloggers’ favourites: Chilli con carne with chocolate and bourbon

The best chilli con carne recipe, with smoky chilli, chocolate and bourbon - perfect for dinner with friends

Welcome to the first of a regular feature on BeNourishd: sharing the favourite recipes of some very lovely bloggers! First up we have printmaker Jen, of the hub of creative inspiration, Inky Collective. I made her favourite recipe, Chilli con carne with chocolate and bourbon, on a lazy Sunday morning for a friend who was coming round for lunch. The best part of this recipe is you can just put it on and forget about it, and the results are absolutely gorgeous. This recipe is 100% Jen’s, but anything I’ve done to amend it I’ve put in squiggly parentheses. So, without further ado, take it away, Jen!

The best chilli con carne recipe, with smoky chilli, chocolate and bourbon - perfect for dinner with friends

What’s your name and where do you blog?

My name is Jen and I blog at Inky Collective!

Tell us a bit about what you write about on your blog:

I interview designer-makers, review workshops and events, and hope to inspire people to find their own creative pursuits or take the next step with their crafty adventure. I also started my own letterpress business last year, so I share my own stories about making and selling.

Sum up your attitude to cooking in three words:

Over-organised and slow.

What’s your favourite recipe and why?

I am terrible at multi tasking in the kitchen, so I love things that can be made all in one pan. It’s why I enjoy baking so much (that and the fact that the result takes longer to eat than it did to make!).

Savoury wise, I make a mean risotto, and a good fry up, but my favourite is chilli con carne with dark chocolate and bourbon! The chocolate makes both the colour and flavour lusciously rich, and the bourbon keeps it from being too sweet.

The best chilli con carne recipe, with smoky chilli, chocolate and bourbon - perfect for dinner with friends


  • A big onion or a couple of small ones – diced
  • Garlic – a couple of gloves, peeled and chopped
  • One whole chilli – chopped {I used 2 whole smokey chipotle┬áchillies – ed}
  • 500g beef mince
  • Veg of your choice – a few carrots and/or courgettes – diced {I used 2 carrots and a tin of kidney beans – ed}
  • Tin of tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp tomato puree
  • 6 squares of dark chocolate
  • A shot or two of bourbon
  • Dash of tabasco


Step one: Drizzle some olive oil into a pot. Add the onions and stir them every few seconds until they soften and start to look translucent.

Step two: Add the chilli and stir until it softens, then add the garlic and stir for 30 secs or so.

Step three: Add the beef mince and chop it up with the wooden spoon so it’s not one big block. Stir occasionally until it’s all brown. Add in a quick grind of pepper and a pinch of salt.

Step four: Add the tomatoes (chop them up with the spoon too), and add the tomato puree. You could give a squirt of ketchup at this point too if you fancy. Then add about 6 drops of tabasco, and the bourbon.

Step five: Let this simmer on the lowest heat, the longer the better. This is the point you could go to the pub.

Step six: Come back from the pub half cut. Add the chocolate. Mix through until chocolate is thoroughly melted. {Or, if you forget to add ┬áthe chocolate, like I did, you can add it at the table when the food is still hot. Oops! – ed}

Step seven: Add the diced veg and stir through until the veg is hot but still crunchy.

Serve chilli with rice/pasta/tortillas/on its own. This chilli makes for delicious reheated leftovers! It only gets better with time. Yum.

Thank you Jen! This was DELICIOUS. I served it with rice, tortillas, cheese, guacamole, sour cream and chopped coriander. It was an absolute treat.

Want to have your favourite recipe featured as part of this series? Drop me an email! Thanks so much for your interest! I’ve got blogger’s lined up until the end of the year! If anyone drops out, I’ll put up a request on Twitter xx

The best chili con carne recipe, with smoky chilli, chocolate and bourbon - perfect for dinner with friends
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

  1. Sarah (Little Beee)

    July 20, 2015 at 11:10 am

    Yum yum yum, good choice Jen – thanks for sharing with us, both of you! x

  2. Carie

    July 20, 2015 at 7:36 pm

    Oh that sounds amazing, it’s making me feel seriously hungry!

  3. Weekend link love - BeNourishd

    July 24, 2015 at 8:00 am

    […] started a brand new series this week, cooking bloggers’ favourite recipes. My first featured blogger is the lovely Jen from Inky Collective (more from her below!), and […]

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: