I know. When you think of chili, you think of sweatshirts and changing leaves and football games and chai lattes and pumpkin ALL THE THINGS, not the middle of summertime. But if you really think about, chili is actually the perfect summer meal! Let me explain.
Think about all the ingredients in chili—peppers, tomatoes, onions, fresh herbs—all items that are currently being produced by the literal truckload at your local farm. They are at their most flavorful, most fresh, and most affordable! So of course summer is the perfect time to make chili!
The result is a hearty, yet light, version of the winter classic. The flavors are brilliant and vibrant thanks to the abundance of vine-ripened tomatoes, spicy peppers, and fresh herbs. The use of chicken in place of heavier red meat keeps the soup feeling summer-y while still giving it that stick-to-your-ribs feeling that chili is known for.
And since it is all pulled together in the slow cooker, there is no need to heat up your kitchen by using the stove. Which is always a win in my books in the middle of summer.
Because the broth for the chili is a little bit thinner than the standard heavy chili base—this could be considering more of a chili soup—I like to serve mine over a bed of brown rice. The rice soaks up the sauce and adds a nice hearty grain to the mix.
You could also put it over cauliflower rice, quinoa, noodles, or mashed potatoes—or, if you prefer a thicker chili, just use a slotted spoon to serve.
If you are still a little concerned about serving chili in the middle of the summer, all you have to do is serve it alongside a cold frozen margarita. Balance at its finest. Enjoy!