Recipe Details

Smoky Pork, Bacon, and White Bean Chili

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour, 20 minutes
Servings: 6


Cook to 145 F with 3 minute rest


1 1/2 pounds pork loin roast, cut into 3/4-inch dice*
8 ounces bacon, thick-cut, (5 or 6 slices), cut crosswise into 1/4-inch strips
1 large onion, cut into 1/2-inch dice
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
2 14 1/2-oz cans diced fire-roasted tomatoes
1 1/2 cups water
2 15 oz cans cannellini beans, (white kidney) or other white beans, drained
1/2 cup sour cream, (optional)
2 scallions, thinly sliced (optional)

Cooking Directions

In a large saucepan or small stockpot over medium heat, cook the bacon, stirring occasionally, until crisp, 8 to 10 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the bacon to a paper towel-lined plate and set aside.
Add the onion to the bacon fat and cook, stirring occasionally, for 2 minutes. Increase the heat to medium-high, add the pork, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are crisp-tender, 6 to 8 minutes. Stir in the chili powder and paprika. Stir in the tomatoes (with their juices) and water. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the pork is tender, 35 to 45 minutes.
Stir in the beans and about 2/3 of the bacon and cook, stirring occasionally, until heated through, about 10 minutes. Add salt to taste. Serve the chili garnished with the remaining bacon and the sour cream and scallions, if using.

Serves 6
* You can also make this recipe with pork shoulder.

Serving Suggestions

To make this chili even more smolderingly smoky, add a finely chopped chipotle chile (from a can of chipotles in adobo sauce) along with the onion, or add some cayenne powder along with the chili powder. You can also cook this recipe in a slow cooker—start it in a large skillet, then just before adding the tomatoes, transfer everything to a slow cooker and proceed from there in the slow cooker. On the side, serve warm tortillas, tortilla chips, corn bread, or a green salad with radishes, avocado, and cilantro.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 500 calories
Protein: 40 grams
Fat: 22 grams
Sodium: 1080 milligrams
Cholesterol: 84 milligrams
Saturated Fat: 7 grams
Carbohydrates: 33 grams
Fiber: 9 grams

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About the Cut: Bacon

The cut used to make bacon comes from the side - or belly - of the pig. When it is cured and smoked, it becomes bacon. An abundance of fat gives bacon its sweet flavor and tender crispiness.

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About the Cooking Method: Stewing

1)Season meat, if desired.
2)In large, heavy skillet with lid, brown meat on all sides in a small amount of oil; remove excess drippings from pan.
3)Add a small amount of liquid and cover pan tightly.
4)Simmer over low heat on the stove or in a low to moderate (275 to 300 degrees F.) oven.

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Tips and Tricks

Buying, Handling & Storage Tips

Store bacon in the package in the coldest part of the refrigerator at a temperature between 36 and 40 degrees F. Check the freshness date (“open by date”) on the package. Once the package is opened, use within five to seven days.

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Butcher's Tips

Bacon doesn’t just come from one place on a pig. In fact, English, American and Italian bacon comes from the belly of the pig while Irish and Canadian bacon comes from the back.

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by anonymous 03/14/2014
I love this! Easy to make (I used a whole package of bacon), and just rinsed out the cans with water so it was thicker, like a stew. The flavor is wonderful. It reminded me of a meal I had out in Wyoming on a Dude Ranch. Will make again and again and again.

Very tasty
by anonymous 11/18/2013
different way of making chili and the smoky taste is wonderful

great taste!
by anonymous 03/05/2013
I made this with leftover smoked pork belly and followed the rest of the recipe exactly. My husband said it is one of the favorite things I've ever made!