Our Chef’s Tool Kit prize winner’s submission is perfect for these increasingly dark and wet autumn days. Lukas’ Chilli con Carne has an unusual and damn good twist. His secret ingredient, ground coffee, adds an incredible something extra to the rich flavour of the dish. Lukas uses 50/50 ground meat (pork and beef) but you can use whatever you prefer – 100% beef or even turkey mince. He says “double, triple, whatever” the ingredients so you can keep some in the freezer for when you need a quick and tasty meal. It’s also great for feeding a hungry crowd who’ve popped in to watch the rugby, football or X Factor! Serve with fluffy, white rice or some toasted crusty bread and enjoy with a cold beer.


  • 2 large onions, diced
  • 6 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1kg ground mince (lean)
  • 1-2 tbsp ground cumin
  • 1 tbsp cracked black pepper
  • 2 tbsp salt
  • 1 tbsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tbsp chilli powder
  • 1 fresh jalapeño or habanero pepper (optional)
  • 2 tins tomatoes
  • 250g passata
  • 150g tomato puree
  • 4 tins red kidney beans
  • 2 tins black beans
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 50g butter
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp ground coffee beans


  1. Sweat the onions in a large casserole dish over a medium-high heat with some butter and olive oil
  2. As the onions become glossy, add the garlic. Once the onions and garlic begin to brown, add the ground mince and stir.
  3. As the meat browns, add the cumin, black pepper, salt, cayenne pepper and chilli powder.
  4. If you want to use japapeño or habanero peppers, add them now. Stir and cover.
  5. When the meat is fully browned and all the ingredients are mixed together, add the tomato puree and passata. Stir in the beans and let it cook on a low-medium heat for 15-20 minutes.
  6. Add the sugar and ground coffee beans. Stir and cook for another 15-20 minutes, adding a cup of water if necessary.
  7. Add cayenne pepper or a few dashes of Tabasco if desired.

BK Tips

  • Using fresh, good quality (usually Italian) tomatoes and tomato puree really make a huge difference in flavour.