I debated posting this recipe. Not because it isn’t good. It’s downright delicious. I grew up loving the occasional chili dog. Just because I eat healthier now, doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy my favorites. That’s why I am posting this recipe. I want you to know that nothing is off limits just because you want to do better for your body. This Easy Hot Dog Chili Recipe is proof that you can enjoy fun food and make the best choices possible.
You should aim for balance, not perfection. In this easy hot dog chili recipe we chose lean ground beef, an all beef nitrate free hot dog, and we keep the serving size reasonable. One hot dog piled with some chili should be plenty. You could choose a reduced calorie hot dog over a regular one and save a few extra calories. This is personal preference, but I would always rather have the best version of the real deal instead of a watered down version. I am far more concerned about the chemicals entering my body versus the calories. When something is taken out of food, something else always replaces it and most of the time, it’s not food.
I hope you let your hair down this summer. You can enjoy all the food you love. Try to remove the words “not allowed” from your food vocabulary. Get into the bathing suit. Enjoy the afternoon by the pool, chili dog in hand. This is life and while we can and should do the best we can for our health, absolute perfection and restriction are no way to live.
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Easy Hot Dog Chili Recipe
This Easy Hot Dog Chili Recipe can be made in the slow cooker, Instant Pot (Electric Pressure Cooker) or the stove top. Quality ingredients come together in this healthier take on an American classic.
- 1 lb. Lean Ground Beef 90% lean recommended.
- 1/2 cup Onion minced
- 8 oz. Canned Tomato Sauce
- 1/2 cup Water
- 2 tbsp. Chili Powder more or less to your tastes
- 2 tsp. Cumin
- 1/8 tsp. Cayenne optional, leave out if you don't want so much spice
- 2 tsp. Honey
- 8 Nitrate Free All Beef Hot Dogs I like Hebrew National Brand
- 8 Top Split Hot Dog Buns
INSTANT POT (Electric Pressure Cooker)
Turn your Instant Pot to the saute function. Add the onion and ground beef. Break up the ground beef and cook until it's browned and the onions are translucent.
Sprinkle an even coating of salt and pepper onto the beef. Then add the chili powder, cumin and cayenne (if using) as well as the canned tomato sauce and water. You will then add in the honey. The honey is to cut the acidic flavor in the canned tomato sauce. Brown sugar can be used if you don't have honey.
Mix everything together and turn the vent to sealing position. Cook on Manual/High Pressure for 7 minutes. Quick release the steam.
Brown the meat on the stove top along with the onions. Mix all the other ingredients in as indicated above and slow cook on low for 4-5 hours.
Brown the meat and the onions. Add all the other ingredients as indicated above and turn to a very low simmer. Simmer in a pot with a lid for 1-2 hours. The longer you simmer things, the more tender the meat becomes and the better the flavors come together.
Serve the chili on a hot dog with mustard, onion , cheese and/or jalapenos. The possibilities are endless. This chili also works really well with nachos!
Please note that the calories calculated are for 1 hotdog (all beef), 1 bun, and 3 tbsp. of Chili. Mustard, onion and jalapenos are essentially free additions. If you add cheese, this will change the calorie count. You could cut calories further by using a reduced fat hot dog or turkey dog. I prefer all beef and nitrate free versus these lower calorie options as a personal preference.