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RV Cooking | Easy One Pot Chili

When it’s time to camp, it’s time to have fun! It’s also time to work that RV cooking like a pro, coz even in the middle of nature, people gotta eat, right? I know this all too well because I’ve been out camping with adults plus a whole gang of youngins. So believe me when I talk about feeding a hungry lot of adventure-loving people.

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Now, I’ll admit it; cooking in an RV is not always an easy task. But I can help you make it less daunting. My motto for cooking food, not only in an RV but also pretty much anywhere, is… Keep it simple, tasty, and easy to clean. This easy chili recipe fits the bill. 

Chili is one comfort food that works its magic as the mercury dips. When all you want to do is curl up in a warm blanky. One bowlful and your heart is warm and happy. This classic spicy meal is great for dinner around the campfire. You can also prepare it back home in your normal-sized kitchen and serve it with cornbread or skillet nachos. 

Another great thing about chili is how dependable it is for feeding a crowd. It’s a quick fix and not so easy to mess up, so that’s why it’s made it here on our blog today. In case you’re in search of similar quick and easy recipes, simply let me know here, and I’ll send you more awesome picks.

WHAT CAN I COOK IN AN RV? 

RV cooking has its challenges. You’ve got just a few utensils. Counter space is hardly enough. Electricity is limited. Storage space is so little; hence you have to work with limited food and ingredients. And even trash disposal is limited.

So what can you cook in an RV? Believe me; you can cook nearly anything you cook in a normal kitchen. The secret to having a smooth culinary experience when camping is preparing in advance, factoring in your limitations, and sticking to recipes with fewer ingredients.

easy chili one pot rv cooking

Some of the easiest RV cooking recipes are one-pot meals. These dishes require minimal utensils. Most of them take a short time to prepare, and the best part, there are all sorts of mouthwatering options to choose from. Top on the list is my easy chili recipe! You can whip up this tasty dish in under 30 minutes. Other options are stews and breakfast scrambles.

Instant pot meals are also ideal for camper cooking. You’ve probably heard me say this a gazillion times: Instant pots and RVers are like peanut butter and jelly; they are just meant for each other.

With this gadget, you can put out almost any meal thinkable. From instant pot steel cut oats for breakfast, to a hearty meatloaf for dinner, to snacky hard-boiled eggs, to cake. And after whipping that delightful meal, cleaning up is a breeze. 

RV Cooking basics – CAN I COOK IN AN RV WHEN IT’S MOVING 

I know how tempting this is. You want to save on time and have food ready to go once you hit the campsite. But due to safety reasons, it’s not advisable to cook in an RV when it’s in motion. 

To begin with, standing or walking inside a moving RV can be quite dangerous. If the driver brakes suddenly, hits a rough patch or suddenly goes over a bump, you can easily lose balance, fall over, and maybe even get hurt. How much worse if you were working in the kitchen? 

Cooking in an RV when it’s moving is like courting danger. Any shaking and your food may spill, utensils may fall off the counter, or you may cut yourself when chopping up ingredients. It’s so much safer to pull over at a rest stop at mealtime so you can comfortably work your magic in the kitchen. More to this, standing in an RV when traveling is technically illegal in some states. 

CAN I FREEZE CHILI FOR RV COOKING? 

Yes, you can freeze chili and reheat it at a later date. What a relief! Right? When out camping, it’s always a pleasure to know you can cook up a huge meal and store part of it to serve later when you’re not in the mood for cooking. 

But to be clear, not all chilis freeze well, especially vegetable chili and white chili. As for my easy chili recipe, you can freeze it and still enjoy a flavorful dish days or months later. So how do you freeze this meal? 

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Once cooked, let it cool to room temperature before packing in freezer bags and placing it in the freezer. Never freeze chili if it’s a day old. 

The evening before you plan on serving the meal, transfer it to the refrigerator to thaw. Heat it in a pan over a stove at mealtime and serve with sour cream and shredded cheese as toppings. 

WHAT TO PUT IN CHILI TO MAKE IT TASTE BETTER 

Classic chili is easy to prepare and damn tasty! But having the same version now and then can get old. You need to add a kick to that bowl of deliciousness to keep people interested and coming back for more. 

What’s the secret to making chili taste better? I’ll spill the beans. 

Fresh jalapeno. Just that? Yes, that’s it! 

RV cooking camping chili in bowls overhead vertical

This one ingredient can transform your regular chili into a bowl of heart-warming, spicy comfort food.

Here’s how you add the secret ingredient. After heating butter in your large pot, add one seeded and minced jalapeno together with the diced onion. Saute until the onions begin to soften. From there, continue with the usual recipe. Add ground beef and cook till brown, then add in all the remaining ingredients. Bring the mixture to a boil. Cover the pot, reduce the heat, and allow to simmer for 15 minutes.

When serving, add the secret ingredient once again, sliced fresh jalapeno with shredded cheese and sour cream as a topping. Dig in, and enjoy mouthfuls of glorious flavor-filled easy chili.

Camping Chili RV Meals horizontal

RV Cooking | Easy Chili

Yield: 6 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

RV cooking is made easy with this one pot camping chili. Quick and delicious and always a crowd-pleaser at the campground.

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 small white onion, diced
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
  • 1 pound lean ground beef (so you don't have to drain)
  • 2 15 ounce cans diced tomatoes with juices
  • 2 15 oz. cans red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • TOPPINGS: Shredded cheddar, sour cream, sliced jalapeno (all optional)

Instructions

  1. In a large pot, heat butter (can use olive oil) over high heat and add onion and jalapeno. Cook, stirring occasionally until onion begins to soften. Add ground beef and cook until crumbled and no longer pink.
  2. Add remaining ingredients (except toppings), stir, and bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer covered for 15 minutes. Serve in bowls with toppings.

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