Three Bean Chili as Seen on Hallmark Channel USA

Host of “Lucky Dog,” Brandon McMillan went on Hallmark Channel USA’s Home & Family to  cook up a pot of Three-Bean Chili for the 20th Annual Charleston Animal Society Chili Cook-Off.

  • 2 dried Pasilla chiles, stem removed
  • 2 dried California chiles, stem removed
  • 1 dried guajillo chile, stem removed
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced (~300g)
  • 1 head garlic (about 10 cloves, 30g), chopped
  • 1 tablespoon ground paprika
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • ½ tablespoon ground coriander
  • ½ tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1-pound cremini mushrooms, (remove and discard stems, finely mince caps by hand or grind in food processor)
  • ½ pound dried pinto beans
  • ½ pound dried kidney beans
  • ½ pound dried great northern beans
  • 2 quarts vegetable or chicken stock
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Water to cover
  • ½ red onion, diced (~150g)
  • 2 scallions, sliced (~50g)
  • 2 tablespoons ancho chili powder
  • ⅓ cup tomato paste
  • 1 28-ounce can crushed-tomatoes
  • 3/4 cup non-hoppy beer (porter, doppelbock, lager, dark ale, etc.)
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 3 cups frozen corn (fire roasted, if available)
  • 2 small cans diced green chiles (230g)
  • Oil for sauteing
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Garnishes: shredded cheese, sour cream, scallions, lime slices, etc.


  1. Toast chiles in the bottom of dry Dutch oven over low heat for 3-5 minutes until pliable and fragrant. Remove from pan and set aside.
  2. Heat a few tablespoons of oil in Dutch oven and add yellow onion. Sauté onion until translucent, 5-7 minutes. Add garlic, continue to sauté for another 2-3 minutes, until fragrant.
  3. Add spices to Dutch oven and sauté until fragrant.
  4. Add ground mushrooms, stir to combine with spices and onion. Cook until reduced and browned, about 10 minutes.
  5. Add dried beans, stir to combine with onion/mushroom mixture.
  6. Pour in stock, add salt, reserved toasted chiles, and bay leaves, stir to combine.
  7. Bring to boil uncovered over high heat, boil for 5-7 minutes, then reduce heat to low and simmer (covered) until beans are tender, 1-3 hours (depending on how fresh the beans are). If liquid level gets too low, add enough water to keep beans fully submerged while cooking.
  8. Meanwhile, in second saucepan, heat oil and add red onion. Sauté until translucent.
  9. Add scallions to saucepan, sauté another 3-4 minutes.
  10. Add chili powder to saucepan, sauté 2-3 minutes, until fragrant.
  11. Add tomato paste to saucepan and toast over medium heat until darkened.
  12. Pour crushed tomatoes, beer, and vinegar into saucepan. Bring to boil, drop to simmer, and cook until reduced by ⅓. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  13. When beans are completely tender, pluck out bay leaves and as much of the dried whole chiles as you’d like (they will have mostly fallen apart). Stir tomato sauce into pot. Do not stir tomato sauce into beans if they’re “almost done.” Acidic food trigger an enzyme in beans that halts cooking immediately.
  14. Stir in frozen corn and diced green chiles.
  15. Taste beans and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.
  16. Serve with cheese, sour cream, scallions, lime slices, and other garnishes.