This Original Chili Recipe layers delicious Southwestern chili and creamy polenta in a cocktail glass for the best tasting chili parfait you have ever seen. Chili Recipes are a little like cowboy boots, casual or dressy, you can’t beat the down home flavor.
This amazing Chili Polenta Parfait was created by my sister and former blogging partner, Donna Kelly. She originally posted this recipe in August of 2010 and it has been a fun favorite ever since.
You can find Donna on ApronStringsBlog.com were she now blogs with her daughter, Anne.
Donna has shared many of her creative recipes here on Everyday Southwest including several original chili recipe (s). Her Nationally acclaimed Vegetarian Chili along with her Authentic Texas Chili are two of our reader’s favorites.
I have updated her post to include a recipe for creamy polenta and to put the recipe in our easy to use, printable recipe format to make it easier for you to re-create this delicious meal for your family.
Along with the text from Donna’s original post, you will find my chef’s tips and serving suggestions.
Donna’s original post for her Original Chili Recipe:
Many of us foodies, in our low-brow moments, are fans of State Fair fare. C’mon. Who doesn’t love funnel cakes, or corn dogs or deep fried Coca Cola? If you don’t know if you’re a State Fair food junkie, take this fab quiz and find out. Did you know that the Iowa State Fair’s claim to fame is an annual life-size butter sculpture of a cow? But, I digress. Fair food is unabashedly uber UNhealthy, but intensely fun. Food should always be FUN, shouldn’t it?
Anyway, this month’s Food Network Magazine features a State Fair savory parfait of pulled pork and mashed potatoes. I laughed out loud! Then, I decided a veggie version was in order. If you whip up some chili and polenta and spoon it into fancy parfait glasses and eat it on your porch swing, you’ll have just as much fun as you would at the State Fair. Maybe even more, depending on who is sitting next to you!
(SHAMELESS PLUG: Come and watch my Demo at the Utah State Fair on Saturday, September 11, 2010 at 4:00. I’ll be doing quesadillas and promoting my new book – Quesadillas! )
— posted by Donna
Use your favorite Chili Recipe for this parfait OR use our favorites! I prefer the Authentic Texas Chili Recipe for all of my chili needs.
Click here for recipe ->
Donna’s family has several serious vegetarians so, she prefers her amazing Ultimate Vegetarian Chili recipe.
You can try them both!
Click here for Ultimate Vegetarian Chili Recipe->
Tips for Original Chili Recipe Polenta Parfait:
- Make the chili first! Creamy polenta is best while is is warm and fresh so, be sure your chili is ready and your garnish are set out before the polenta is finished.
- This recipe is great for leftovers! Yes! Use your leftover chili and polenta. This recipe is so fun, no one will realize they are eating leftovers.
- Creamy polenta may need to be thinned just a little bit if it has been warming for awhile or it is leftover from another meal. Add a little milk or cream to thin it. If you are choosing vegetarian, use a little vegetable stock instead.
- Garnish with cheese, if desired. I try to use a “melt-y” cheese like Monterey Jack or a finely grated cheddar. Longhorn style cheese is a favorite here in the Southwest.
- Use clear plastic cups! No need to drag out the fine crystal, use plastic cups for a family meal or an outdoor picnic.
- If you use the crystal or glass stemware, be sure that the chili and polenta is not too hot—you don’t want to crack your lovely stemware.
- If using plastic cups or glassed with no stem, be sure the chili and polenta is cool enough to hold the cup in your hand.
- Have fun! This dish is really fun for a “build your own buffet” or a family meal that will get the kids talking. I dare your teenagers not to smile.
- Come back and tell us how you like it! We’d love to hear from you and how your friends and family like this parfait
Save the crystal and use heat proof plastic cups-
Print the Original Chili Recipe Polenta Parfait Recipe Here—
Original Chili Recipe and Polenta Parfait
- 3 cups chili heated
- 4 cups water vegetable or chicken stock or milk
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup polenta NOT quick-cooking or yellow cornmeal
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup grated Monterey Jack or cheddar cheese
- 1/3 cup sour cream
- 4 cherry tomatoes
- Heat your favorite chili to a simmer, reduce heat and keep warm.
- Bring water, stock or milk and salt to a boil in a 3-quart heavy saucepan
- Add polenta in a thin stream, whisk constantly. Whisk and cook over moderate heat, 2 minutes.
- Reduce heat to low then, cover pan. Cook at a barely a simmer, stirring with a long-handled spoon for 1 minute after every 10 minutes of cooking, 45 minutes total. Remove from heat and whisk in butter until incorporated.
- Let chili cool some before spooning into glass or crystal stemware.
- Spoon polenta into the bottom of each glass or cup. Spoon a layer of chili on top and sprinkle with cheese repeat the layers to the top of the glass.
- Garnish with a dollop of sour cream and a cherry tomato.