Main Dish

Lizzy's Sweet and Savory Bean Chili with Bacon and Sausage

Martinelli Winery

3360 River Road
Windsor, CA 95492

  • RECIPE YEAR: 2013
  • YIELD: Serves 12
  • PAIRS WELL WITH: Martinelli Vigneto di Evo Zinfandel

It all started with a present brought home to a husband. "Look, honey, I got you an Easter pig!" We called her Lizzy. She frolicked in her pen and if you scratched her back, she would squeal, wiggle and jump in the air. It was fun - until she grew to 500 pounds. It was time, though it wasn't easy. My husband had a butcher do the deed. And we had to come up with recipes that used a lot of pork!

  • 1 1/2 pounds bacon, cut into 1-inch strips
  • 1 1/2 pounds Portuguese or spicy Italian sausage, casing removed
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon crushed garlic
  • 1 can (6 ounces) tomato paste, plus more if needed
  • 1 can (15 ounces) stewed tomatoes
  • 1 can (15 ounces) tomato sauce
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 can (15 ounces) pinto beans, drained
  • 1 can (15 ounces) kidney beans, drained
  • 1 can (15 ounces) butter beans, drained
  • 1 can (15 ounces) white kidney beans, drained
  • 1 bottle (12 fluid ounces) beer, plus more if needed
  • Corn bread for serving


In a Dutch oven, cook the bacon until crispy. Transfer to paper towels to drain.

Pour off the fat in the pot. Add the sausage, onion and garlic to the pot and cook, stirring occasionally, until the meat is browned throughout. Spoon off any excess fat.

Return the bacon to the pot. Add the tomato paste, stewed tomatoes, tomato sauce, molasses, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, beans and beer. Bring to a slow simmer and cook the chili, stirring occasionally, for 2 to 3 hours. If it seems too thick, add more beer. If it seems too thin, add more tomato paste.

Serve the chili with corn bread on the side.

Martinelli Winery

3360 River Road
Windsor, CA 95492