Seven horrible ways to ruin chili

Categories: Photos, The List

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The blank canvas.
Granted, chili is something of a sacred thing -- and the nature of that sacredness varies, depending on where you were brought up, and what your grandma ladled into a bowl. Still, there are some things that you can do to chili that seem like anathema, whether or not you believe with all your heart that chili should or should not contain beans.

So, in the interests of better football Sunday dinners everywhere, let's take an admittedly subjective look at the various ways you can completely disrespect this American standard bowl of goodness. We've accompanied each sin with a crude illustration because we believe that strongly in our chili convictions.

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7. Too Much Cheese

I know, I know: This is America, and there's no such thing as too much cheese. Except that there is, and your doctor, your arteries, and your bowl of chili all know that. You're not making a pizza there, chief -- easy on the cheddar.

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6. Serve it Over Noodles

With apologies to Cincinnati, if you serve your chili over pasta, it becomes something else. When I was a kid, we called that Chili Mac -- which is exactly what my junior high school called it too, when they served it for hot lunch with applesauce and limp green beans. And really, once middle schools adopt a dish, that dish is pretty much done in the culinary canon. Look what happened to pizza boats, after all. Never recovered.

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5. Make it Vegetarian

Come on. We don't make fake squash out of meat scraps, and you shouldn't try to pass off textured vegetable protein as meat in my chili. Most any kind of meat will do, but hamburger, as we all know, is the most common.



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