Consider blasphemy if you like, but for the most part I prefer lentil and bean chili over beef chili. Beef chili weighs you down, sitting in your stomach as if you had swallowed a bowling ball whole. Lentils and beans are filling without being heavy, spicy chipotle provides the heat and beer gives the chili a rich, smoky taste.

This chili can be made in either the Crock-Pot or in a heavy kettle on the stove, depending on your kitchen needs on game day. I made this batch on a day when I was using the oven and the stove for other things, so the slow cooker it was.

My guests? Yeah, they’re lentil and bean chili converts too, even though they’re all heavy meat eaters.